Dermanyssus spp

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Adult Dermanyssus gallinae mite

The poultry red mite, Dermanyssus spp, are a parasitic mite that has been reported to infect cats worldwide[1].

This mite is normally found on fowl, pigeons and caged birds, and cats are often accidentally infected by close association with birds or when eating them. This mite is non-burrowing and lives primarily on the skin, causing intense pruritus and dermatitis in affected cats[2].

The majority of the life cycle of this parasite occurs off the host, where it lays eggs in the ground amongst the bird's or cat's bedding.

Treatment is effective with any acaricidal wash or application of topical fipronil[3].


  1. Bowman, DD et al (2003) Feline clinical parasitology. Iowa University Press, Iowa. pp:373-374
  2. Grant, DI (1985) Notes on parasitic skin disease in the dog and cat. Br Vet J 141:447-462
  3. Muller, GH et al (1983) Small animal dermatology. 3rd edition. WB Saunders, Philadelphia. pp:317