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Lice Notes

Veterinary Medicine Notes > Endocrinology and Integument 2 Notes

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Ectoparasitic skin disease - lice INTRODUCTION Lice are insects, and therefore have three body segments and three pairs of legs. They are small but visible to the naked eye. N.B. lice may be confused with keds, which are wingless flies. Keds are larger than lice and have much longer legs. Lice may be sucking or chewing lice. Sucking lice have long narrow heads, whereas chewing lice have broader heads.

Sucking louse

Chewing louse

Lice are very host specific. Lice infestation is known as pediculosis. The louse life cycle lasts approximately 3 weeks. Lice eggs are found attached to hairs, and can cause indirect infestation from contaminated bedding and blankets.

CANINE AND FELINE PEDICULOSIS In dogs caused by Trichodectes canis (biting louse) and Linognathus setosus (sucking louse).

Trichodectes canis

Linognathus setosus

In cats caused by Felicola subrostratus.

Clinical signs???May be asymptomatic Poor haircoat Scaling Papules Crusts Variable pruritus. Heavy infestation can cause anaemia and lethargy.

PathogenesisLice eggs are found attached to hairs.

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