Is Mange Contagious to Other Dogs?

If your pet is affected by mange, you may want to know whether it is contagious to other dogs. The response depends on the type of mange that affects your dog. For instance, sarcoptic mange is contagious, while demodectic mange will only affect immunocompromised dogs.

Types of Canine Mange

Canine mange is a skin disease that is caused by parasites known as mites. The most common symptoms of mange include skin flakiness, lesions and pustules. The skin may thicken and become crusty. There are several types of mites that cause mange, and these will lead to various types of skin problems known as:

  • Demodectic mange, caused by Demadex mites
  • Sarcoptic mange, caused by Sarcoptes scabiei mites
  • Scabies, caused by Notoedres mites

Some of these mites are more contagious to other dogs and some can even be transmitted to humans.

Demodectic Mange

The demodectic canine mange can be transmitted to other dogs. If the infected dog comes in direct contact with other dogs, these are very likely to catch the mites. The demodectic mange will manifest through:

  • Hair loss in patches
  • Itchy skin
  • Redness
  • Flaky skin

Other means of transmission include contact with bedding, because the mites can be present in the bedding of an infected pet. In rare cases, dogs that eat from the same food bowl as dogs infected with demodectic mange may catch the parasite. The demadex mites cannot be contracted by humans.

Sarcoptic Mange

Sarcoptic mange manifests through hardened skin, irritation and hair loss. This infection is not as contagious as other types of mange. Most dogs will be immune to the parasites. However, puppies, senior dogs and dogs that have a compromised immune system may be more at risk of catching this infection. The mites can only be transmitted if the dog touches the skin of an infected dog. The Sarcoptes scabiei won't live on bedding or other surfaces, so these cannot be contracted from other sources than infected skin.

Dog Scabies

Dog scabies are contagious to other dogs and also to people. The parasites will cause itchiness, thickened skin and bumps. The skin may bleed and there may also be open sores that are worsened if the dog scratches his skin.

Cheyletiella Mange

Cheyletiella mange is also known as the "walking dandruff," and is contagious to other dogs. The infection will cause flaky skin and crusts. The dog will scratch and lick his skin due to the irritation and this can also cause other bacterial infections.

Canine Mange Detection

If you detect any symptoms of mange, you will need to get a clear diagnosis. This can be done with a skin scraping test. The results will determine the treatment that's prescribed. Treatment will focus on the skin symptoms. The dog will have to get some ointments to soothe the skin and anti-parasitic solutions or shampoos that will eliminate the mites.