Rabbit Ear Mite Infection

Topics: Ear, Inflammation, Ear canal Pages: 4 (1169 words) Published: January 14, 2014
TITLE: Rabbit Ear Mite Infection
Psoroptes cuniculi is an ectoparasitic cause of ear mite infection in several different host species particularly rabbits, horses, goats, antelopes, sheep and cattle. This disease should not left untreated as when it became worst, the parasite may spread and infest the head, the neck, legs, ventral abdomen and they may loss the ear pinnas and even cause fatal meningitis. Psoroptes mites do not infect human. EPIDEMIOLOGY

This condition is common in captive rabbits and can infect any aged rabbits. Psoroptes cuniculi can survive off the host for 4-21 days at temperatures between 5ºC-31ºC and relative humidities between 20%-99%. Survival of this mite is greatest at low temperatures and a high humidity. Temperatures greater than 40ºC and a humidity less than 75 % are lethal to the mite within two days. It has five stages life cycle which are the egg, larva, protonymph, tritonymph and adult. Within 4 days, the mite egg hatches to release a larva. The larval mite feeds and grows and sheds its exoskeleton, emerging from it as a slightly larger stage called a protonymph (both larva and protonymph stages have only 6 legs). Again, the protonymph mite stage feeds, grows and sheds its exoskeleton, emerge to eight-legged stage called a tritonymph. The tritonymph mite stage grows and sheds its exoskeleton, emerging from it as an adult mite (eight-legged also). The adult mite feeds and lays more eggs and the cycle last about 3 weeks. PATHOGENESIS

Psoroptes cuniculi rabbit ear mites do not burrow down into epidermal layers of the rabbit's skin like certain other species of mange mites. They live feeding and breeding on the surface of the rabbit's skin. The mites feed upon the rabbit's lymph by piercing the rabbit's ear skin with their needle-like mouthparts. It produces and secretes waste products like feces and mucus which are highly allergenic and antigenic to the rabbit's skin. Then, the rabbit's immune system reacts against...
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