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Fur Mites

Fur Mites 

Natural remedies to help control and kill fur mites ("walking dandruff") on your dog and cat. 

 

Nutrition plays a major role in skin and bone health. Healthy skin and bones are a result of a well-functioning, synchronized effort by the immune system, tissues and organs in the body to provide skin support, help to maintain the skin’s ability to withstand and repair the effects of topical skin wounds, scars, burns, environmental exposure to toxins, antigens and microorganisms, bacterial and viral.

Fur mites, also known as Cheyletiella mites, are larger than most other mites affecting pets, and can actually be seen by the naked eye if you look closely enough. These mites can cause Cheyletiella mange which is characterized by skin irritation, hair loss, itching, and dandruff. It is often referred to "walking dandruff" as the mites move around under the scales and skin flakes on your pet giving the impression of moving dandruff.

Fur mites can live in the environment without a host for up to 10 days and so it is fairly common for bedding and carpeting to become contaminated. Fur mites can also temporarily affect humans causing itchiness and skin irritation, and even painful skin lesions in severe cases.

Fur mites on cats are very contagious and can be easily transmitted from pet to pet through direct contact or through contact with contaminated environments. There are a number of different species of parasitic mites and they usually live in the hair follicles of our pets.

The entire life-cycle of the fur mite is approximately 3 weeks and during this time the female will lay a number of eggs. These eggs can also contaminate the environment causing re-infestation if not treated in addition to the affected pets.

Mites are almost always transmitted from mother to young in the first few weeks of life, and generally live in harmony on your pet without causing any problems. However, malnutrition, a weakened immune system, or intense stress can disrupt the natural balance. Mites can reproduce rapidly and become out of control. Mites do not originate with unhygienic living conditions or environmental contamination. 

Hair loss is usually the first visible symptom. Hair loss typically begins on the head area, starting around the eyes and muzzle. Crusty, red skin may look moist in appearance and can be sensitive, itchy and may crack and ooze.

Untreated mite infestation can become a serious problem. It can even be fatal. In serious cases hair loss can spread over vast areas of the body, lymph nodes can become swollen, the skin can become inflamed and painful and secondary infections can quickly develop. Your pet can become very ill and may develop symptoms such as a fever, lethargy and lose of appetite.

Mites flourish on animals with a poor immune system and are most common in canine puppies with under-developed immune systems or older pets with suppressed immune systems. Corticosteroids or other immune-suppressing drugs have also been implicated as a possible cause for demodectic mange as well as other types of mange caused by demodex mites.

Mites are almost always transmitted from mother to young in the first few weeks of life, and generally live in harmony on your pet without causing any problems. However, when something such as malnutrition, a weakened immune system, or intense stress disrupts this natural balance, these mites can reproduce rapidly and become out of control.

It is not enough to treat one pet in the household after a fur mite infestation. Because these mites are so contagious, it is important to treat each pet in the household as well as all bedding, collars, pet brushed and carpeting your pet has come in contact with.

Organic Remedies - (listed in order of relevance and recommendation by holistic vets for this disease or condition)

Herbal remedies are safe, gentle but effective and acts as a natural deterrent for fleas, mites and other parasites, acting as a natural insecticide, antibacterial and antibiotic which can help guard against infections after a mite infestation, soothing itchy skin and stimulates tissue growth, promoting skin healing properties and boosting immunity.  

Seal ‘Em & Heal ‘Em – (learn more) promotes healing for all types of wounds, including hot spots, abrasions, bites, cuts, scrapes, skin irritations, infections, bleeding & hemorrhaging conditions, ulcers, GERD, esophaghitis & other degenerative conditions of the larynx & throat; provides cellular support of tissue, skin & coat; for gastrointestinal distress; as a neurasthenic that blocks the activation of nerve fibers & tissue response to inflammation, supporting the body's tissue repair mechanism to stop mutations (important in the treatment of all types of Lyme disease, including Lyme borealis, burgdorferi, borreliosis & Chronic Lyme disease (CLD).

Yummy Tummy  (learn more) promotes Probiotic digestive, urinary, bladder and gall bladder support, for all types of digestive disorders, promotes proper digestion and assimilation of nutrients, for bladder (cystitis) and kidney (pyelonephritis) infections, for urine leakage and urinary incontinence, as a natural, plant-based steroid alternative, provides important support for cramping, pain, discomfort, Gastroenteritis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Inflammatory Bowel Disorder (IBD), prostate inflammation, BHP, prostatitis, Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD), Feline Urologic Syndrome (FUS) and for Candida albicans.

Love Your Liver - (learn more) promotes the performance, health and repair of the liver, kidneys and bladder, facilitates rental and digestive excretions, provides protection and detoxification from insecticides, toxins, vaccinations, an inappropriate diet and an excess of food, relieves symptoms such as pressure, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting and flatulence, regulates kidney acid/alkaline levels, for hepatic lipidosis, Fatty Liver Disease (FLD),  Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD), Feline Urological Syndrome (FUS) and Feline cholangiohepatitis.

Shake Ur Groove Thing  (learn more) promotes healthy bowel function and purification, gentle parasitic detoxification and body clarification, used for cramping, pain, constipation, gas and bloating, supports correct balance of intestinal flora and helps calms the digestive system, for anal fissures, fistulas, hemorrhoids, food allergies and hypersensitivities, as a general skin support, and provides a healthy solution for waste and toxin removal, including pesticides, environmental toxins, chemicals related to flea and tick products and drugs regimens such as NSAID’s and synthetic glucosteriods and corticosteroids.

Stix & Stones – (learn more) promotes kidney function, helps to break up kidney, liver, gallbladder and bladder stones and gravel (active stones, crystals and as a preventative), helps to safely remove stones from the body; treats urinary infections, for kidney and liver disease, tones and balances kidney, liver, intestine, pancreas, gall bladder function and health, reduces uric acid levels in urine, increases urination, blocks the formation of calcium oxalate, provides pH modulation, for urinary system disorders and pathologies and for hepatic insufficiency.

Conventional Remedies:

Mite infestations are serious and should never be ignored. Make an appointment with your pet’s vet at the first sign of severe itchiness or hair loss. Whenever possible, avoid giving your pet harsh pharmaceutical drugs and chemicals. Many prescribed products can suppress the immune system and cause toxicity build up in your pet.

Ivermectin is commonly used to treat mange mites however; it can be fatal to certain breeds and should not be used in Collies and other canine herding breeds to treat mites.

For mites can often be detected by the naked eye if you look closely enough, however, they are still quite small and a magnifying glass is often necessary. Your vet will probably examine your pet’s skin and fur with a magnifying glass; do skin scrapings, or combings to detect the fur mites and their eggs.

In the past, most conventional flea programs could be used to control both fleas and fur mites in dogs and cats. However, newer, safer flea products tend to be less effective that the older pyrethrin-based flea treatments. Today, conventional treatment of a fur mite infestation usually includes chemical based lotions, shampoos or dips. These products often contain chemicals such as pyrethrin, lime sulfur, fipronil, or selamectin.

An injection or oral dose of ivermectin is also a possible treatment; however, this is not an option for herding dogs such as collies as normal dosages of this drug could be fatal for these breeds.

Conventional treatments of fur mites often include harsh chemicals which may cause a number of unwanted side effects.

 

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