Once you or your children are diagnosed with head lice, you will wonder whether or not your family’s furry, four-legged friend could be infected as well. We’re often asked, “can my dog get lice from my kids?”, or “can I get lice from my cat?”
We are happy to report that the answer is “NO!”
The reason this cross infestation isn’t possible is lice don’t move from one species to another. Let’s dig in:
Lice are actually species-specific ectoparasite. Human head lice are called Pediculus Humanus Capitis. The lice that you would find on a dog are called Trichodected Canis or Linognathus Setosus. The lice that you would discover on a cat are called Felicola Subrostrata. Each is a different type of bug! Human lice need humans to survive, dog lice need dogs to survive, and cat lice need to live on cats to survive. Lice can tell the difference between the blood types, and stick to their animal host preferences.
Additionally, animal lice infections aren’t nearly as common as human head lice. It’s more likely that your pooch or kitty will catch a case of the fleas or ticks [we hate those too] before ever experiencing a lice infestation.
If you suspect your dog/cat caught lice from a same-species pet, contaminated grooming utensil or bedding consult a veterinarian for screening for lice, fleas, ticks or other ectoparasites.
Dog/Cat Lice Symptoms
Scratching, rubbing, biting skin
Dry scruffy coat
If lice are discovered, your vet can provide you with the most effective treatment program and your furry friends will be back to couch climbing and bone chewing in no time!
For more information on Human Head Lice visit call us or visit us online.
Do you know someone who may be infected with lice? Call us to get more information about their treatment options.
Disclaimer: the cute dog pictured here is lice free and was not harmed by the writing of this article!