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September 5, 2013 at 8:00 AMComments: 5 Faves: 0

C'mon People, Motor Oil DOES NOT Cure Mange!

By Victoria Swanson More Blogs by This AuthorFrom the Paws & Awws Blog Series


Handed down for generations, a common "old school method" to cure dog mange is the use of motor oil. You heard me right! Motor Oil!!!

Sadly, this is what one pet-parent recently tried on his 2 year old Wheaten/Terrier Mix, Caylie, who had been suffering from mange. Instead of curing the mange, Caylie suffered severe burns all over her body. Once the pet-parent realized the hot motor oil was causing more damage to the dog's skin, he decided that in the best interest of the dog, it was time to surrender her to a rescue group.

Caylie is undergoing intense rehabilitation for her burns and must be sedated three times a week to have her bandages changed. Until she is cured of the mange and her skin is healed, she will continue being taken care of at the rescue group. According to the staff at the rescue organization, Caylie will be an easy adoption because she "has a great disposition."

The pet-parent is not being charged with animal cruelty because it is believed that he wasn't doing this as an act of abuse but as an ill-conceived form of treatment.

Home Remedies and Common Sense

First and foremost, I cannot say this strong enough; DO NOT USE MOTOR OIL ON YOUR DOG EVER! Using motor oil as a means of killing mange is an old-wives tale that has yet to be universally debunked. When searching on the Internet, I discovered that this "treatment" is still recommended in 2013!

The Internet is a "wealth of information." But, should we really believe everything we read? When looking for a home remedy treatment, please take extra time to research the information. If the source in regards to the treatment sounds indifferent, dangerous, or unreliable - please apply common sense here. Prior to any type of treatment, please consult with a vet first.

Depending on the severity of mange, you may want to consider a more natural approach. You could use a skin remedy to help heal the skin and products like cider oil or olive oil to assist in killing the mites. The best recommendation is to visit a holistic vet to help you cure the mange naturally.

What do you think of using an "old school method" such as Motor Oil to cure mange or any other condition? Do you think the pet-parent should have been prosecuted? Has your dog suffered from mange? If yes, what type of treatments have you tried?


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  • Holy Crow! There should have been a warning on that picture - what an awful mess this pet owner did to his dog! Hot motor oil? Seriously even when splattered with a touch of bacon grease a person will quickly react with an OUCH! I can't imagine pouring hot oil on my dog. I don't even think my dog would allow it, she would get up and run away.

  • Hi Nancy~

    I wanted a shock factor, which is why I didn't put a warning. We need to see how horrible this is! This is commonly done, and needed to be shown how dangerous, some may not want to open the blog if there is a warning.

  • These pictures gave me chills..but anyway I rescued a pitbull mix with mange from the pound recently and used natural neem oil on his spots with mange (ears, tail and a couple other spots) after one appliction the mange dissapeared completely and the fur returned very quickly...granted the mange wasn't widespread but neem oil is powerful stuff, look into it (I got mine off amazon), just make sure the dog isn't licking the spots you rub the oil into because it isn't meant to be ingested...maybe use a cone for 24 hours, but it works so well and is all natural!

  • Hi Amber~
    THANK YOU for rescuing and a Pittie (which I LOVE those dogs)! Yes, we have a great shampoo product for Mange; Defendex and its main ingredient is NEEM OIL! So that is awesome that you mentioned about the Neem Oil! Here is the link to our shampoo;

  • I Have a little pit hes just about a year old and he started getting dandruff like spots and mostly his ears were scabby. But it wasnt really bad at the moment. But any type of dandruf looking patches on my pets i jut automatically assume its mange. I had a cat die of mange before and i dont want anything like that to happen again. But we first gave him a neem oil soap baths and then once he was completely dry we powdered him up with diatomaceous earth. **FOOD GRADE** anything other than food grade is probably dangerous. But its supposed to kill anything with an exoskeleton. But i powder him up and then i leave him be for 2 days. And repeat. After 5 days it was gone and i could flop his ears around and they didnt feel stiff or dandruffy lol. But i gave him one more neem soap bath just to seal the deal lol then i bathed him in some milky oatmeal water to soften him up again after all that soap and powder drying him up.

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