Diatomaceous Earth for Lice ?
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Thread: Diatomaceous Earth for Lice ?

  1. #1

    Default Diatomaceous Earth for Lice ?

    Is Diatomaceous Earth a good solution for rat lice? It is in a powder form. A girl at Pet Valu suggested it to me and so I bought it. She said to sprinkle it on their litter and on their backs.
    Would this get rid of lice on my rats? Is it safe?
    Any opinion on this powder would be greatly appreciated!

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  3. #2
    Skritch Lover CarolineRose's Avatar
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    I haven't heard of this treatment before, I've only heard of Revolution for lice. But I know they sell the food grade variety as a supplement for people and I've heard of farmers using it to kill insects that could harm their livestock so I guess it could work in theory. I'd wait for someone else's suggestions though because I don't know much about DE on small animals, it may damage their lungs as rats are very sensitive it that area.

  4. #3
    Little Fuzzy
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    DE is a common bed bug treatment, or controller anyway. It works by cutting into the exoskeleton of the insects and drying them out. It is not an instant cure, but works over several weeks. I maybe be wrong, but I think they also dry out the eggs. I have read that it's not a great idea to breathe it. I have a bag myself because I'm having an ant problem. I also have cats and a dog, who can walk through it if they really tried to. I personally haven't had any problems, however that may just be my experience.

    I have been pondering the use of a common reptile remedy for mites, which is called the Nyx treatment. The Nyx treatment consists of Nyx head lice medicine found at most stores and a gallon of distilled water. I can find the exact recipe if needed. I have wondered if it would be mammal safe for treatment of bugs. I think the major problem would be that mammals groom themselves whereas snakes do not.

  5. #4
    Squishy Laprat BigBen's Avatar
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    Since rats are so prone to respiratory problems, I would stay away from the diatomaceous earth. It may succeed in dealing with the lice, for the same reason it works on bedbugs (i.e., cutting into the exoskeleton), but that cutting effect would not be good for a rat's lungs, if breathed in, or digestive system, if ingested during grooming. Which is why diatomaceous earth is not good for human lungs, either.
    Things my rats have taught me: Wheels are for food storage, food dishes are seating, cherry tomatoes are decorative cage accents, cucumber slices are furniture, a ramp is not properly utilized unless a tissue box is blocking it.
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  6. #5

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    I mixed it with water and rubbed it on my rats with a cloth so that the power wouldn't fly in the air and be inhaled. The package said it can be mixed with food to kill internal parasites, or rubbed on pets to remove outer parasites, so it would still be safe if it were ingested. I'll try it and see if any progress is made through the next couple weeks.Just wanted to know how successful this treatment is and if anyone has used it before.

  7. #6
    Administrator Jaguar's Avatar
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    I prefer (and would recommend) the safe and effective $5 tube of Ivermectin from a feed store. But if this works for you, great... I still think rats are too frail to test possibly dangerous medications on. People have killed their rats using things like flea sprays designed for birds (usually also recommended by uneducated pet store employees).


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  8. #7

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    The powder just feels like baking soda in my hands. It does make their cage messy since it's wet...
    I wouldn't have the first clue where to get Ivermectin... everything I found said it is for horses and I don't know of any horse places close to where I am. I'll monitor them and see how it goes, but I really don't know how quickly it should work or how to check if the powder is working.
    Is there any way to check to see if the lice is cleared up? I've tried hard to get the girls to sit still so I can check their fur, but I can't see anything.

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