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The dreaded Demodex

Hi all,

Oscar here.

Each week, Dr. S. and I sit down and discuss what blog topic we should chat about this week. For all my long term readers, you'll remember that this blog has been going on for a while so it's not always the easiest thing to come up with a brand new, exciting story to share with you all. But when we do? Makes it even better.

Ok so this week, we're going to talk about a little parasite called Demodex. The animal body is a magical and mysterious thing. It knows when to cool us down. When to heat us up. Tells us when we're hungry or when we need to go to the bathroom. It also has certain organisms living inside of it that normally stay pretty under wraps.

One such thing as you might have guessed is Demodex. Demodex ends up in a dog's body by being passed through the mother's birth canal and continues to for the most part, live in an animal's body undetected in their hair follicles. However, in the case of animals with somewhat compromised immune systems, like older dogs, sick pooches, or puppies, these little parasites aren't always content to lay low and prefer to let their presence be known by acting out.

In these instances, they might appear on a dog's skin in the form of hair loss, redness and itching. The good news is, it was recently discovered that Nexgard, a medication usually used to treat fleas and ticks, is equally effective at treating these little guys. So if you notice your pet scratching more than usual, bring them in to the PPAC for a look—it might be a dermatological condition and it's likely easily treatable!

Til' next time,

Oscar

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