Mange mites are tiny parasites that can turn a once healthy looking dog into a sad and sorry sight indeed. Mange is caused from a mite that burrows under the skin causing discomfort or itching, infection and unsightly hair loss.
There are different types of mange mites the most common being sarcoptic mange and demodectic. Mange will generally only affect animals with depressed immune function. It is necessary to visit your veterinarian for correct diagnosis of mange, where he or she will do a skin scraping to determine the presence of mites, which are not visible to the naked eye.
Chronic mange can be very debilitating to the animal and cause depression, lethargy, anaemia, hair loss & thickening of skin amongst other symptoms.
Demodectic mange is caused from a mite that lives in the hair follicles and may cause great discomfort and irritation for the host.
It is more common in young or elderly animals and particularly those that have been recently vaccinated. It appears as a bald patch usually on the head, face, elbows, feet or neck area. This can often clear up without treatment by the time the animal reaches one to two years of age. There are two forms of demodectic mange – squamous and pustular. In the squamous form, the hair falls out in patches leaving dry lesions, which may become inflamed and swollen. The pustular form may result from a bacterial infection when the skin becomes thickened, inflamed and itchy.
Sarcoptic mange (scabies) is caused from mites that burrow under the skin causing an itchy rash generally around the muzzle, eyes, ears, elbows and hocks extending over the whole body. Itching can be intense also causing inflammation and infections to develop. The skin may be dry with bran-like flaking or red and inflamed. Notoderic mange mostly affects cats with weakened immune function, causing intense itching, hair loss, flaky and scabby skin. It is highly contagious, so all pets in the household should be checked.
Otodectic mange affects the ears with itching which may lead to secondary infection and ulceration of the earflap from constant head shaking or scratching.
Most of the chemical dips and drugs used to treat mange are quite toxic and in many cases simply do not work. They may cause damage to liver, kidneys, immune system and nervous system. Often the animal’s health will deteriorate during or after chemical treatment, which is not the best option for overcoming this condition.
It is always essential to treat the animal internally as well as externally and a natural raw food diet is the best defence for building a healthy immune system and aiding in detoxifying the liver which is generally necessary for animal’s suffering from mange. Internal treatment involves fasting for at least 48 hours on fresh vegetable juices & broths with added vitamin C to aid in detoxification and help strengthen the immune system.
High doses of Vitamin C may be needed under the guidance of a natural animal practitioner. Other nutrients, which may be beneficial, are lecithin, zinc, vitamin A, E and vitamin B complex. All processed (dried, canned and packaged) foods should be avoided and all milk products also.If your pet has been on antibiotics, which can disrupt the friendly bacteria in the intestinal tract, it is a good idea to supplement with an acidophilus supplement for a few weeks afterwards. Garlic is essential as an effective anti-parasitic herb; it also aids immune function and healing. So add to food daily.
Excessive amounts of fresh garlic can irritate the stomach so don’t go overboard.
Herbs, neem oil, essential oils, cider vinegar and other natural ingredients may be used externally to help mange. We have a special rinse available for external treatment that is safe for you and your dog. Herbal MNG rinse.
A very effective lemon-garlic rinse can be made up. Chop up around 30 to 40 cloves of garlic(skin and all) and place into a large pot with 6 or more lemon skins and one whole lemon, chopped. Fill pot with about four litres of water and bring to the boil, simmer just until peel is mushy. Remove from heat, cover and allow to cool. Apply cooled solution liberally to all affected areas and leave to dry. Use daily for up to ten days.
Homeopathic remedies are also an important part of natural treatment for this troublesome condition. Sulphur is one of the most commonly used remedies in ascending potencies, but other remedies include Psorinum, which can be used as a prophylactic as well as for treatment. Arsenicum alb may be used for severe itching, restlessness and when worse towards midnight. Tellurium may be beneficial when lesions appear equally on both sides of the body and Mezereum may be indicated when pustular lesions are found on the head and face with small scabs.
This is just a few of the many remedies that may be used depending on the particular symptoms showing. Flower essences to choose from are Crab apple, cherry plum, Gorse, Mimulus or Aspen depending on the particular animal in question. Once correct diagnosis is made, then natural treatments should be commenced immediately with herbal and homeopathic treatment, fasting and nutritional supplementation. All processed foods must be eliminated from the diet and only fresh raw meat, bones and minced vegetables should be served daily as part of an on-going natural diet with additional supplements as required.
This should be used with external herbal rinses and washes to eliminate the mites and aid in the healing of the skin.We have a Natural relief pack which contains – herbal rinse concentrate for external use, herbal & homeopathic remedies for internal use, vitamin C and also includes treatment instructions and dietary information sheet to help overcome this condition naturally. Order MA Relief pack for dogs.
It is possible to overcome mange naturally without harming the health of your pet (or yourself) with harsh chemicals and drugs. It is best to seek the guidance of an experienced animal practitioner for the most suitable treatment procedure for your animal.
(Right) One month after using our totally natural remedies
By Julie Massoni ND