HealthParasitesCan My Dog Catch Mange From Foxes? It's Possible!

Can My Dog Catch Mange From Foxes? It’s Possible!

Dogs can catch mange from foxes if they come into contact with a fox that has been infected. Foxes carry Sarcoptic mange, which is deadly for the fox species. Luckily, Sarcoptic mange is easily curable in dogs if treated promptly.

As you take out the trash, you come across an almost hairless dog lurking near the garbage can. You notice the four-legged pal’s patchy, dry, and exposed skin. You know this is not a healthy physical appearance of a dog and that the poor pup probably has mange.

You already know mange is common in foxes, but you might wonder whether dogs can catch mange from a fox.

In today’s guide, we will answer that exact question. But first, we will go over a brief description of what mange is and then go over some of the best home remedies to treat mange in your dog.

What is Mange?

Mange is a very unsightly skin disease that is commonly seen in dogs who have been neglected. You may have seen varying degrees of this skin condition if you’ve been exposed to any rescue videos or organizations.

With neglect and mistreatment, mites cause mange in dogs. Sarcoptic mange is the most common form, which is often found in strays.

This type of mange is highly contagious. It can easily be transferred to and from other dogs. The mites will lay eggs underneath the skin of a dog. Once the eggs hatch, they will all feed on the
dog’s skin.

Signs of Mange

Since some dogs have different reactions to the mites, signs and symptoms of mange will vary.

Some of the most common signs of mange include:

  • Itchiness
  • Rash
  • Patchiness
  • Hair loss
  • Bacterial infections
  • Yellow crusts
  • Thickened skin.

Depending on when the dog has been exposed to the mites, the reaction may not be immediate. It can range from a couple days to a few weeks.

If left untreated, it can spread throughout the dog’s entire body. Please note that this disease is a very painful experience for the dog, so it’s important to deal with it ASAP.

Can My Dog Catch Mange from a Fox?

As we know, sarcoptic mange is highly contagious. It can easily be transferred from animal to animal, which means your dog can catch mange from a fox.

Sarcoptic mange is a deadly disease to foxes. In fact, it may be the biggest factor in their decreased population. This contrasts with your four-legged friend. If your dog shows symptoms of mange, take them in for treatment as soon as possible.

It is easily treated and curable if found early in dogs. It may be harder to cure if left untreated. If you live in an area where there is a large fox population, we highly recommend that you supervise your dog while they are out in the yard.

Can Dogs Catch Mange From Each Other

Unfortunately, it’s even easier for dogs to catch mange from each other than from a fox. If your dog has come into contact with another infected dog, be sure to keep a close eye on your dog the next few days and look for the symptoms mentioned above.

Can I Catch Mange From My Dog?

Sarcoptic mange is a highly contagious disease. It can be transferred from various animals, including humans.

Though it may find its way onto a human, it will not complete its life cycle on a human. For humans, mange is also known as scabies. A human will most likely experience severe itching, skin rashes, or blisters and bumps.

It will commonly affect folded skin areas, such as the armpits, shoulder blades, feet, and inner elbows. Mange is often mistaken for other skin diseases such as eczema or dermatitis. Therefore, it is important to consult and diagnose your symptoms and conditions correctly.

How to Treat Mange In a Dog

If your pooch has contracted mange, no worries!

We know that it can be scary at first, but here are some methods, tips, and products you can use to treat your dog’s mange.

Please note that even though it can be treated at home, we recommend reaching out to your vet to come up with the best treatment plan for you and your dog.


Your vet might recommend using a dip to help with your dog’s mange. A dip can be found at your veterinarian’s office, local pet store, or online.

The dip will most likely be a lime sulfur dip and is supposed to kill any microorganisms that are causing your dog pain. It should also soothe or end any rashes or irritability on your dog’s skin.

The solution is very concentrated, so you will have to dilute it. If you are unsure of the instructions, please contact your vet for the best method while using it on your dog.

Topical Ointments

Your veterinarian may also suggest topical Ointments. These can be applied to your dog’s infected skin multiple times per day.

An example of medication is fipronil. These topical ointments should soothe your dog’s skin and remove any mites that may breed on them.

Topical Sprays

This may not be a solution, but it will help reduce the pain your dog is experiencing from mange.
Topical sprays are found at your local pet store or online. These will prevent your dog from wanting to itch or nip at the infected area.

These sprays will not sting your dog’s infection. They are safe and hypoallergenic, making it perfect for your pup’s sensitive skin.

Oral Medication

If a topical solution is not an option, your veterinarian may recommend taking an oral medication.

They come in many forms, such as a liquid, chew, or pill. An example of oral medication is afoxolaner. The oral medication will help get rid of the mites that are affecting your dog’s skin.

Shampoo and Conditioners

Like topical sprays, specific shampoo and conditioners can assist with your dog’s treatment.
These shampoos and conditioners are fast acting and help relieve your dog’s irritated skin. The type of shampoo you want to look for is antiparasitic shampoo and conditioner, as it will help get rid of the mites that are causing your dog’s mange.

What If I Only See Hair Loss Around The Ears?

If you look up pictures of dogs that have been infected with mange, you will most likely only see the severe cases. You may look at the pictures and then at your dog and think, “there’s no way my dog has mange, he is only losing hair around the ears.”

Don’t be so quick to come to that conclusion. Typically, hair loss will start around the face and the ears and slowly spread to the legs, tail, and rest of the body.

The reason for this is that the mites prefer hairless skin. If you see hair loss around the ears, chances are good you’ll see some hair loss on the belly.

If your dog has come into contact with another animal that has mange, it’s good to take them to the vet just to be on the safe side.

What To Do If I See a Fox With Mange?

If you live in an area with a high fox population, you’ll likely come across a few foxes that have mange.

It’s important to report this to animal control for two different reasons.

1) The fox is suffering and needs help

2) You don’t want the fox to spread mange to other animals, especially your dog!

Many people will try to catch the fox themselves, but considering humans can get infected with mange from a fox, we don’t recommend this method. Instead, it’s best to let the professionals handle it.

If you see a fox with mange, give animal control a call. Do your best to monitor the fox’s location until animal control gets there.

It’s also important to keep your pets inside during this time. If your dog gets sight of the fox, they
may begin the chase. The last thing you want is for your dog to come into contact with an infected fox.

How is Sarcoptic Mange Diagnosed?

Identifying sarcoptic mange is a tricky task. Although you should be able to see the mites under a microscope, that’s not always the case. Unfortunately, blood work is no help either.

The way most vets diagnose mange is to identify the symptoms and then rule out other health conditions that could cause those symptoms, such as scabies or allergies. If those other health conditions come back negative, the vet will then diagnose your dog with mange.

Bottom Line – Mange in Dogs is Curable

We hope this article gave you insight into how mange can affect you and your four-legged friend.

We know that it can be scary, but with some understanding and some simple solutions, you can
help prevent your dog from getting this troublesome disease.

As always, if you have questions regarding any of the information above, please contact your vet. We hope to see your dog’s tail wagging soon!

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