How to Tell if Your Dog Has Maggots?

How to Tell if Your Dog Has Maggots

How to Tell if Your Dog Has Maggots?- As a dog lover, you always have to care for your pets. It is because, at times, they do face lots of health challenges.

One such encounter is the maggots. So, in that case, you have to be quite alert and treat the skin disease very seriously.

Especially, you need to know the answer to how to tell if your dog has maggots.

Caring for your dog is the ultimate thing that every dog owner seriously follows. But accidentally, if our dog shows some skin issue like maggot infestation, then understanding the sign is a must. Check their fur coat thoroughly as they are visible mostly on the skin.

Now many of you ever face this problem, like getting confused or are unsure whether your dog got a maggot or not.

In that case, we will enlighten you on some of the few facts related to maggots. Also, we will be aware of the signs and symptoms so that you can get the answer.

Understanding Maggots

Here we will let you know what is maggots in a real sense. In that case, you have to see whether your dog suffered any injury or wound. If so, then flies tend to deposit eggs, particularly in that area.

The hatched eggs are called the maggots. These maggots feed on healthy skin tissue. Remember that these maggots always remain in the wounded area, which does not allow the skin to heal.

Gradually it spreads to the rest of the body. Monitoring should be done regularly so that it fails to proceed further. Otherwise, it will eat away all other important organs.

What are the Types of Maggots?

The maggots are different, but the following two are mostly found in dogs.

Cutaneous Maggot

Cutaneous maggots are the skin ion found on dogs’ wounds or injuries.

Cavitary Maggot

On the other hand, cavity maggots are commonly found in areas like ears, nostrils, or mouth in the form of natural cavities.

What are the Reasons Behind Having Maggots?

Here in this section, we will only highlight the causes of having maggots.

Firstly you need to see whether your dog has any pre-existing skin issues or soreness, then that area is susceptible to having maggot. Initially, they are small and can increase with scratching or mating with any other animal or may be due to licking.

Secondly, skin rashes continue to remain for long on the dog’s skin. Else allergies in the canines, as well as unhealthy hygiene, are responsible for causing maggots.

Remember that maggots occur in the unreachable parts of the dogs where his tongue can’t reach. Dog’s tongues are the best healer when it comes to treating any wound because their saliva consists of healthy tissue. The tongue removes all types of hatched eggs from an infected area.

When the environment is hot and humid during the summer season, mostly dogs x will get the maggots. It is because this is the time when the flies lay eggs.

Dogs who are more exposed to a gathering or grass-laden areas are more likely to get maggots.

But yes, dogs who are mostly indoors can also have this maggot as the larvae get transferred from the fur of the infected dog.

Some Common Symptoms of Maggots

As discussed earlier, there are various maggots, but the symptoms are different for each. But whenever your dog gets maggots,

please make sure that you treat it as soon as it is recognized; otherwise, it can lead to acute health problems. The major symptoms incorporated in the list are:

  1. Diarrhea
  2. Fever
  3. Too much licking
  4. Discomfort
  5. Depression
  6. Edema
  7. Itching
  8. Twitching
  9. Pain
  10. Fatigue

How to Tell if Your Dog Has Maggots

How to Tell if Your Dog has Maggots?

This section is curated to warn you regarding the possible signs in regards to maggots in the dog’s body.

  • Remember that these are found on the wound, coat, or skin. A female fly who can lay about 75 to 150 eggs at a single time can cause maggots. These are mostly seen moving around slowly.
  • Coming to the size of the maggots, they range from 1 by fourth to 1 inch. You

You may also find the same sticky, white, just like a rice grain on the dog’s hair. Remember, those are the maggots.

  • The important part is whenever you see that your dog is fidgeting, feeling uneasy, and constantly changing place or grooming, or scratching, and then these are the clear signs of having maggots.
  • You need to look for areas like the head, beneath the ears, and the middle portion of the back. In addition to that, look into moist areas because these are the areas where maggots begin to breed.
  • You also need to check the area from where the urine passes out, underneath the tail, and the joint area in the toe.

Also, dogs with undiagnosed maggots will produce a rotten smell because maggots produce an enzyme called the necrotize. It kills all the healthy tissue.

  • Besides all these, there are some situations where dogs also catch a type of infection called Cuterebra. It takes place when the botflies lay their eggs near the burrows of rodents or rabbits, then the larvae from the hatched eggs accidentally enter the dog’s body through the wound, mouth, or nose.

How to Diagnose Maggots?

Well, as the process of diagnosis goes, the maggot attack from a blowfly is easier to understand rather than treating the same. So for maggot, you need to look at the wounds your dog suffered from.

If such a thing happens, try to shave the place so that your vet can closely look at the tissues affected in and around.

In acute conditions, the injury can go deeper, and the necrotized secretion from the maggots can increase further.

The culture of the tissues affected will tell whether any fungal or bacterial infection affected the wound or not.

One more thing while looking at the skin, you will find a lump because botflies do create such things as they tend to grow. As said, you need to clear off the fur to make the wounded area visible.

But in other cases, if the problem is way too severe, then the grub’s breathing tube will peep out automatically.

Now, if the grub travels to the other parts of the body like the brain or lungs, then no doubt it becomes way more challenging, and the diagnosis becomes difficult.

Apart from that, imaging procedures like CT scans or magnetic resonance are also helpful in identifying the tracks of the migratory larva.

What is the Treatment Process in Curing Maggots in Dogs?

Coming to the treatment process, the primary one on the list is removing the maggots physically. The veterinary surgeon does complete the process by following a fragile procedure.

If the maggots are from a blowfly, then the number of the larvae will be more, and therefore it needs immediate removal of them. Most of the time, the damaged skin due to maggots has to be shredded to get rid of the dying tissue, and finally, it will heal with time.

Remember that the treatment process is too delicate. That is why to avoid any discomfort, and the treatment is conducted through natural anesthesia. But maggots caused by Cuterebra lead to removing the maggots surgically.

Steps in the Treatment Process

  1. The initial step to remove the maggots in dogs is by wiping and disinfecting the same area with an antiseptic medicine.
  2. But again, this depends on the vet because many of them like to extract the area and then clear off the wounds after the surgical process.
  3. As the vet is done with the process, they will clear off the fur from that area to check whether any trace of eggs or bacteria is still there or not.
  4. After that, they will apply an antiseptic lotion that is too topically.
  5. Finally, they will cover up the wounded area so that it remains clean and let it heal smoothly.
  6. After the procedure, the vet will ask you to provide your dog with antibiotics for several weeks. Additionally, will continue fluid-based therapy or provide anti-fungal so that your dog stays.

How to Prevent Maggot Infestation?

Though the maggot infestation is more in the rural areas, yes, dogs can catch the same in the large cities as well.

Therefore you need to stay alert always, and you can start the prevention measures by deworming your dog. Also, maintain his or her vaccination schedule diligently.

In addition to that, always give time to understand the coat and fur of your dog daily. Also, make sure that your dog does not have any wounds on the body. In case of wounds, just clean them and apply antiseptic-based solutions.

Don’t forget to take care of the hygiene level of your dog. Make sure that you brush or clean the fur so that you can check whether any underlying skin issue is there or not.

Remember, aged dogs with less mobility are more prone to developing maggot infestation. So you must keep them indoors most of the time.

The above elaborated guides you on how to tell if your dog has maggots. Just follow the points and look after the condition. In case of acute conditions, always take assistance from the vet.

Aapt Dubey
Aapt Dubey

Aapt Dubey, a devoted canine enthusiast and experienced dog Owner, brings boundless passion to our team. With a heart full of love for our four-legged friends, Aapt is dedicated to sharing insights on dog care, behavior, and training to make every pup's life happier and healthier at

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