Skip to main content - The Official Portal for North Dakota State Government

Sarcoptic Mange

Looks Bad

Commonly infected wildlife

CanineAny Mammal

Is this animal infected?

  • Infected animals show varying degrees of hair loss, usually on the legs and tail, but over most of the body in severe cases
  • Some animals may have thickened skin
  • Badly infected animals are in poor body condition
    • Animal may be weak and fearless of humans

Sarcoptic Mange

Can I get it?

Yes, but the risk appears to be low

  • Infections are rare and short-lived

How bad can it get?


Itchy, but rare and short lived; can be treated

Protect myself and others

  • Wear disposable gloves
  • Disinfect work space after skinning/ handling infected animals
  • Wash hands
  • Wear long-sleeved clothing
  • Shower and wash clothing after handling wildlife
Wear GlovesWash Hands

Symptoms in humans

  • Skin redness and rashes may be extremely irritating
  • It can be treated – seek medical attention to:
    • Ensure it is not human mange (which can be more difficult to treat)
    • Treat infection so you don’t transmit it to your pets

Safe for pets?


  • This is a skin disease of pet dogs and wild canines
  • Mange can be transferred to pets from infected animals by direct contact
Not safe for pets

What causes it?

  • Parasitic mites called Sarcoptes scabiei
  • Mites are related to spiders and ticks