Canine Nasal Mites

  • Current Advice on Parasite Control:

    Ectoparasites - Canine Nasal Mites

    Last reviewed and edited Jul 2007

  • Species

    Pneumonyssoides caninum (canine nasal mite)

    Pneumonyssoides caninum lives in the nasal and paranasal sinuses of the dog. Infestation has been reported from the tropics and from Scandinavia, indicating that the geographic range of this species is probably worldwide.

  • Overview of Life Cycle

    • Adult mites live on the dog, are nonburrowing, and feed on the keratin layer of the epidermis. Mites are very mobile and extremely contagious by direct contact.
    • These mites have been found on fleas, lice, and flies; it has been hypothesized that this is one means by which they move between hosts.
  • Stages

    • Ornithonyssus4x001CAPC_w-caption.jpgStages include egg, larva, nymph, and adult. All stages occur within the sinuses.
    • Adults are large (1-mm long) and visible to the naked eye. They have long legs that extend beyond the edges of the body, and their overall appearance is similar to that of the avian mites, Dermanyssus and Ornithonyssus.
  • Disease

    • Heavy infestations or infestations in certain dogs can result in violent sneezing or epistaxis.
    • Infestations are often diagnosed by chance.
  • Prevalence

    • Infestations appear to be more common in areas after an initial case is discovered; examination of dogs by people expecting to find infestations often increases the numbers of cases identified.
  • Host Associations and Transmission Between Hosts

    • This mite appears to be restricted to the dog.
  • Prepatent Period and Environmental Factors

    • The prepatent period and environmental factors are unknown.
  • Site of Infection and Pathogenesis

    • Mites are found in the nasal and paranasal sinuses.
  • Diagnosis

    • Rhinoscopic examination often can reveal the mites crawling in the nasal cavity.
    • Mites are also sometimes found in mucus or watery secretions from the nose or in mucus sneezed onto the examination table.
  • Treatment

    • Cases have been treated with ivermectin (200 μg/kg).
    • Selamectin is likely to have efficacy.
  • Control and Prevention

    • Selamectin will probably prevent infestations with these parasites.
  • Public Health Considerations

    • No human health hazard appears to be associated with these mites.