If you’ve ever been unfortunate enough to contract lice then you’re probably familiar with the irritable pain dogs with lice experience. However, dogs actually catch a different species of lice entirely, one that can’t be passed on to humans.Whew!
The two types of lice are very different. . .
The two types of lice are very different. Where human lice moves quickly and enjoys clean hair, dog lice mostly stays stationary and prefers dirty manes. Dogs that are properly cared for within clean environments are highly unlikely to ever come in contact with canine lice, which is why consummate dog owners never experience the parasitic pests.
There are two forms of canine lice, chewing and sucking. Chewing lice chews on the skin of its victim while sucking lice, the more irritating of the two, latches onto a dog and sucks its blood. Both forms are easily transferable between canines and through contaminated objects, although they only target dogs.
The good news is that dog lice are easily diagnosable and treatable. They can be seen with the naked eye and look like small six-legged bugs. They don’t move, making it easy for you to run a brush or comb through your dog’s fur and see the pesky gangs of itchy invaders.
Treatment is incredibly simple. Your local pet store undoubtedly has a wide variety of shampoos, sprays and powders that will effectively kill and rid your dog of lice. You may need to treat your pup multiple times in order to also kills the eggs as they hatch, but your puppy is sure to be clean as a whistle after just a few days or a couple weeks of treatment depending on how bad his/her lice infestation is.
To prevent reinfection, thoroughly clean or get rid of your dog’s bedding and all the places he/she frequents. Be sure to disinfect all grooming utensils and you should be free of dog lice soon after discovering their existence.
Yes, they’re disgusting, but so easily dealt with that you won’t even have to contact or notify your local vet. After dealing with the lice, make sure your dog is kept clean and healthy and you’ll probably never have to worry about dog lice ever again.