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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28474
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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My piggies are scratching a lot. It's usually mites, I'm

Customer Question

My piggies are scratching a lot. It's usually mites, I'm told. None of my piggies ever had mites when I used newspaper and fleece in their cages but now that I've swapped to hay- they're scratching. I've tried a spray mite treatment but I if it needs contact to do the job I just don't see how you could treat them thoroughly (8 piggies at moment and more on the way). I've been told you can use the pipette style flea treatment for kittens. Different brands use different active ingredients. Which would be safest for my babies?
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Using the wrong medication for fleas can be dangerous. You should definitely talk to the Veterinarian. Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about I'm?
Customer: One of them is a texel- which means he has hair to the ground. Very hard to use a spray effectively on that!
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 6 months ago.

You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 6 months ago.

You're correct. The most common ectoparasites found in guinea pigs include mites and the most severe dermatitis is caused by Trixacarus caviae. Severe pruritis (itchiness) is a hallmark sign of infection; animals can scratch so intensely that they appear to be having a seizure. Ivermectin dosed at 0.2-0.5 mg/kg orally or subcutaneously every 7-10 days for 3-4 treatments has been the treatment of choice for T. caviae but anecdotally topical selamectin (Revolution) treatment at 6 mg/kg every 2 weeks for 3 treatments has been successful. 1% (10 mg/mL) ivermectin solution is available over the counter in pet/feed stores or online but Revolution is a prescription drug. You'll need to weigh your pigs in grams carefully to be able to give the tiny doses of these ectoparasiticides safely. There are 1000 mg in a kilogram (kg). Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish. I have to leave my computer for the night but I promise to reply in the morning if need be.