Carroll County Animal Hospital

Ernie's skin issue

Ernie, an 18 week old male great Pyrenees mix, presented to Carroll County Animal Hospital for a puppy Check up. He was recently adopted from a humane society and had been in his new home for just a few days. So far he is eating and drinking well. He has a normal appetite and normal urination and defecation. His new mom and dad report that there is hair loss on his head.

On examination, Ernie has a normal body condition (not underweight and not overweight). His body temperature is normal. His heart rate and respiration rate are also normal. Ernie has several areas of hair loss on his head and around both eyes. The skin is reddened in these areas. The rest of his skin is normal. No fleas were seen on examination.

A skin scrape was performed on Ernie's skin surrounding his eyes.

This is what we saw under the microscope!

Ernie has demodex mange.


Demodex mites live in the hair follicle and sebaceous glands of most animals in small numbers. These mites are transmitted from mother to nursing puppies within the first days after birth.

Generalized demodex is when there are more than 4-5 lesions on the body ( hairloss, redness). It can occur at any age although young puppies are most often seen with the lesions due to their low immune system. Demodex requires treatment quickly so that secondary infections do not form.

This type of mange is NOT contagious to humans or to other dogs and cats.

Ernie was started on a daily medication for 4 weeks. He was also discharged with a special shampoo used to flush the hair follicle. Baths were recommended twice a week for one month.

Ernie will be rechecked in 4 weeks to make sure his treatment was successful.

If your puppy has hair loss or signs of a skin infection be sure to seek medical attention.