Topic: Wool Mites
Each month that goes by gives me better perspective on my wool mite treatment regime. Here's where I am this November.
5 months of aggressive treatment has resulted in the following situation: right now there is no one exhibiting wool mite symptoms. None.
I found the monthly oral dosages of .5 cc of 1% bovine Ivomec for adult rabbits to be too little for the mites/conditions I have here. It was sufficient for bunnies under 6 pounds. I have decided that since ivermectin is only guaranteed to work 30 days according to the bottle, then I simply have to use it that often.
After 4 months of dosing every 2 weeks (until this month), I have come to the conclusion that my barn hosts the mites here. The vet finally got a skin scraping to examine and what we have is the common fur mite, nothing unusual there. The problem seems to be that the field mice, outside cats (there are 5) and hay that is present in my barn is contributing to reinfection. This in spite of monthly dosing of the barn walls, floors and cages with Sevin, which kills the mite, also.
I can, however, report that my barns have not been this clean in years
My current dosing involves the use of generic bovine Ivermectin from Jeffers, not Ivomec, and I am finding that 1 cc per adult rabbit keeps the mites away, but seems to upset the rabbits' stomachs for 48 hours. This is unacceptable, so I have ordered Ivomec, which was easier on them for some reason. (The generic Ivermectin is $24/bottle, vs the $32 that Ivomec is. I am using up a bottle every 2 months with my herd, so tried to economize).
I am finding, too, that the length of the coat is a factor for reinfestation here after 3 weeks. The shorter the coat, the less I see mites. I assume the rabbits are grooming them off better.
The final word on this (for this year) is that Ivermectin alone will not protect a rabbit in a long coat. I use it AND Happy Jack flea powder in the last 2 months. Waiting for that treasured 5" clip, which has taken me years to get right, means that every 2 weeks in the last 8 weeks of growth, the rabbits need to be treated with flea powder containing carbaryl.
I have appreciated responses from all of you in the fur mite situations you do or do not have in your barns, and what treatments (if any) you use and what works. It seems to me that folks who have concrete floors under their cages just may fare better, so this is something I will look into for the future.