Mango worms or “Cordylobia anthropophaga” are a mango fly’s parasitic larvae. This is a common type of fly found in parts of Africa including Uganda, South Africa, and East Africa.
They are often drawn to warmer temperatures and places where high humidity is normal. While this is true, they do have the ability to spread quickly and will do so through different carriers including dogs.
The reason mango worms are dangerous has to do with how they find hosts. They can burrow into a dog’s skin and create pus-filled lesions that are quite uncomfortable.
This is why it becomes important to learn how to treat mango worms in dogs.
To treat mango worms in dogs, it’s recommended to manually remove the mango worm by squeezing the pus-filled lesion causing it to expand. Once it expands, the parasitic larvae will slip out allowing the lesion to heal.
This can be a time-consuming process but it’s essential to provide relief.
Here is a breakdown of how to treat mango worms in dogs and potential preventative actions you can take as a dog owner.
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Tips On How To Treat Mango Worms In Dogs
1. Manually Remove The Mango Worms
It’s recommended to manually remove the mango worms.
In most cases, you will have to use the methods listed below (i.e. hydraulic expulsion, suffocation, or general squeezing). It comes down to how embedded the mango worm is in the dog’s skin.
If it is at the surface then it might be easy to just pick it out with your fingernail or tweezers. It depends on the situation.
You are recommended to remove as many with your hands. This will allow you to avoid damaging the dog’s skin and avoid irritating the lesion.
2. Hydraulic Expulsion
This method requires the specialized use of epinephrine and lidocaine.
Vets will often attempt to use something like this for manual removal of the mango worms. The idea is to take the mixture and inject the lesion with it.
What is the mixture going to do?
It will help flush the lesion and push the mango worm out. In some cases, you might have to use forceps to complete the task by lifting the mango worm out once it’s been flushed.
It’s a method that does work well and tends to help with deeply embedded mango worms in a dog’s skin.
3. Squeeze The Hole
This is an option dog owners can use at home.
What you are going to do is try to squeeze the lesion to get the mango worm to come out. This is a simple procedure where you grip onto the ends of the lesion and press inwards.
This will cause the lesion to squeeze and force the mango worm out of its hole. As soon as you see the mango worm out, you can pull it away.
Remember, you don’t want to be aggressive during this process. It’s essential to remove the entire larvae or some of it will be left behind leading to an unwanted infection.
4. Suffocate The Larvae
Another option is to suffocate the mango worm.
You are going to look to remove all of the scabs on the lesions. This can be done with something as simple as oil.
The goal is to make it hard for the larvae to survive in their current position. Once you cover the top of the boil, it will become difficult for the larvae to breathe. This is when it will attempt to pop out of the skin.
The moment you see them pop out, you can use forceps to complete the removal process.
How To Prevent Mango Worms In Dogs
1. Rinse Dog’s Fur Regularly
It’s important to learn how to prevent mango worms in dogs.
The best strategy is to rinse the dog’s fur regularly. This is a common issue when dogs are spending a lot of time outdoors and tend to welcome all sorts of insects and ticks onto their skin.
This can include mango worms.
With a mango worm on a dog’s body, it can become quite difficult to remove them. You want to make sure the larvae don’t get a chance to thrive in the dog’s skin.
The only way to do this is to rinse the dog’s fur whenever it spends a lot of time outdoors. This is a bare minimum to avoid situations where the mango worms spread on a dog’s body.
2. Change And Wash Dog Blanket
Is the dog using the same blanket all the time? What about its dog bed?
Anything the dog is making contact with should be washed regularly. You don’t want a situation where the larvae find a way onto the dog’s skin after it has been washed.
This is just as problematic as letting the dog roam around outdoors in areas with mango worms.
Look to wash the dog blanket every week to avoid situations such as this.
3. Clean The House Often
You should also look to clean the house often when preventing mango worms in dogs.
The goal is to keep the house free of mango worms to ensure they don’t spread onto the pets in your home. It is a simple process and one that is going to save you a lot of grief later on.
Remember, mango worms can also trouble humans. So, this is essential for your health just as it is for the dog.
These are the main details to think about as you learn how to treat mango worms in dogs at home.
When treating mango worms in dogs, it’s best to squeeze the lesion to get the mango worm to come out. You can do this with your hands by pressing along the sides of the lesion. This will cause the mango worm to pop out automatically.
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