Mange Mites

In February, 2009, we noticed a mild rash on the ankle of one of our breeding bucks. It seems to be mildly irritating but not serious. We determined we would just watch it for a few days. We were confused, to a degree, because he had 14 does in the paddock with him; and he was the only one with the rash.

We were talking to a friend from Mississippi who told us several of his animals had a fungus caused by all the rain they have had. When we had him describe the fungus, it sounded exactly like what we have seen. A customer from Alabama, when he saw our buck, said he had a doe with the same condition. When his vet couldn’t determine what the problem was, they did a scrapping and sent it to Auburn. The doe was diagnosed with having an allergy; moving her to a new paddock solved her problem.

Several days later we first noticed the rash, it had spread up his legs, totally covered his testicles, and was moving onto his body. The emperor had no clothes – at least not from his waist down!! We diagnosed the problem as mange mites. Mange mites are transmitted by the wild squirrels that live in our woods. Aggressive treatment was suddenly called for.

The first step of treatment is to scrub the infected area with diluted Prolate. This is the medication used to treat mange in dogs and cats. Step two is to spray the infected area with an antibiotic spray (we used Old Hickory, but an iodine spray or scarlet oil would also work) to prevent a secondary infection. Finally, step three is to give shots of Ivomec Injectible, at double the cattle dose (or at whatever dosage your vet recommends), for 3 weeks in a row. Between week 2 and week 3 the hair will start to return. We did move him, and all his girls, to a different paddock.

Amazingly, one year later the same buck was affected by the same problem. This time we got the situation under control before he started losing all his hair. In a different paddock we had 2 does also infected. We still don’t understand why only 3 out of a herd of 103 were affected but are grateful that the cure is relatively simple.

Ken and Pat Motes
Clear Creek Farms
33 South Clear Creek Road
Fall River, Tennessee 38468
Phone: (931) 852-2167
Fax: (931) 852-2168

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