Can My Kids Get Lice from Our Pets?
Most parents are all too familiar with the anxiety that discovering head lice in your household can cause. Especially if you’re not sure where the pesky critters originated, you wait in dreaded anticipation of where they may strike next.
You may even ask yourself: How safe is the dog? Did the kids catch lice from the cat? The last thing you need while treating your child is for your pets to continue spreading it back to them. After all, they are best friends, and best friends are known to share.
Lice Are Species-Specific
Parents, you’re in luck! The probability of your child catching lice from the family pets is slim to none. Lice are species-specific; meaning there are lice that only infest dogs (Trichodectes canis and Linognathus setosus), lice that only infest cats (Felicola subrostrata), and yes, lice that only infest humans (Pediculus humanus capitis). These insects are species-specific to the extent that they literally cannot survive on the blood of a different host species. It also means that dogs and cats are unable to carry or distribute eggs of human lice. So, if your child has been sent home with an infestation, there is no need to scold the family pets.
About Human Lice
Lice are an unwelcome, social nuisance but, are no indication of lack of hygiene or neglect. Although lice are not a serious medical threat to children, it’s embarrassing and carries a shameful stigma. Do not attempt to remove any attached eggs from your clothing, bedding, or furniture, yourself. This could lead to further spreading throughout your home.
Risk of Dog or Cat Lice for Your Pets
Since lice are species-specific, your pets are not at risk of catching lice from your children. As for their risk of dog or cat lice, although pets are susceptible, it is uncommon for household pets to get lice. It is mainly found in pets without proper shelter. Animals that are either very young or very old, or in poor health, are most at risk of infestation.
Lice Treatment Options
A lice infestation is an annoyance every parent wishes to avoid. At the first symptoms or sightings of lice, call Fresh Heads Lice Removal, for the safest most lice treatment options. Our goal is to rid your child from irritating lice and offer ways to prevent future outbreaks. Visit our website to learn more about our environmentally-friendly products. Fresh Heads provides consultations for removing lice from your home during an infestation.
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