Pets & Animal Pets Cats

Life Cycle of Ear Mites

    Background and Symptoms

    • Ear mites cannot live on human hosts; they can, however, bite you. They can only survive on furry animals such as cats and dogs. Brown, black and crusty ear buildup is a common sign of ear mites. A veterinarian can detect ear mites by examining the animal's ear discharge.

    Egg

    • Ear mites begin their life cycle on the skin of your animal's ear canal. Eggs laid there have a four-day incubation period before they hatch.

    Larvae

    • Larvae hatch from the ear mite eggs. Larvae eats the animal's ear wax and skin oil before transforming into a protonymph, which turns into a deutonymph.

    Deutonymph

    • The deutonymph mates with an adult male mite before establishing gender. After mating, the deutonymph develops into either a male or female ear mite. Female ear mites lay eggs, while males do not.

    Adulthood

    • Once adulthood is reached, ear mites can begin reproducing, and the results can cause pain and discomfort for the infected animal. Adult mites live for two weeks eating ear wax and skin oil.

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