Is Demodex Red Mite Genetic in Bulldogs

Dear Dr. Kraemer

I a 4.5 Month English bulldog that was diagnosed with demodex mange today. Our personal vet suggested to not breed our bulldog, as this can be considered genetic. Would you agree?

bulldog and French bulldog Demodex skin mite

Do you agree with her saying to not breed her?

When is The Best Time To Breed My Bulldog

if so, is the best time to spay my bulldog is at 6 months, and is there anything we can expect from spaying (ex: weight gain)?

Many thanks,

1 Answers
Dr. Roy Kraemer Staff answered 4 years ago

Answer for Spaying a Bulldog Puppy with Demodex  Mites

Dear Tony

Demodex mites can be randomly found in any normal, healthy bulldog, even one that exhibits no clinical problems.

Demodex Mange in Bulldog Puppies

When a bulldog does exhibit clinical problems, it is typically in the form of non-itchy, patchy hair loss, and it is usually due to an underlying immune incompetency common to puppies.

Demodex Mites Due To Immune Suppression

Immune suppression is often due to:

  1. DRUGS: immunosuppression drugs like a steroid (prednisone) and immune incompetency.
  2. IMMUNE INCOMPETENCE: The insufficiency of the immune system is frequently attributable to an immune system that has not fully matured, as is likely the situation in the positive demodex detection in your young and developing puppy.

Bulldog Puppy Demodex Mite GENETICS 

Bulldogs exhibit a higher susceptibility to Demodex mites compared to many other breeds, suggesting a potential underlying genetic predisposition.

Nevertheless, this is less about “breed genetics” and more about your puppy young AGE.


Puppy demodicosis, or “juvenile localized demodicosis,” is generally a brief condition with limited medical and health consequences. It typically manifests as localized, patchy, and itchy hair loss in specific areas of the body.



The mild nature of juvenile demodex usually resolves as the puppy’s immune system matures over the course of a few months.

bulldog PUPPY demodex red mite


Unlike the juvenile, mild, short-term, non-itchy puppy variant, the adult type is characterized by severity, itchiness, and frequent bacterial and yeast infections.

The adult type requires aggressive, costly treatment, and it can linger for a long time despite our best efforts.

bulldog adult immune suppressed severe Demodex

The generalized demodex type is usually diagnosed in adult mature bulldogs and is due to a depressed immune system

Identifying the underlying cause can pose a challenge, and the prognosis is often less favorable and requires prolonged treatment.


Paradoxically, medical teams frequently misdiagnose generalized Demodex by confusing it with common allergies, yeast, and bacterial infections. In such instances, it’s not unusual for them to prescribe or administer a steroid (cortisone) to alleviate the itch.

It’s important to note that all cortisones act as immune suppressants, exacerbating the issue rather than resolving it.

Should I Breed or Spay a Bulldog Puppy Diagnosed with Demodex

Your puppy, Demodex, is more likely to have something to do with its young age and incompetent immune system than the breed’s genetic propensity to Demodex.

On the other hand, I would not breed or recommend spaying or  neutering  bulldogs with  the adult chronic generalized form

Bulldog or French Bulldog Puppy with Demodex Mites PREVENT & TREAT

Stress suppresses the immune system as well as parasite infestation, poor quality diet, and anxiety

immune boosting therapeutic supplement for bulldog demodex mite




Reducing stress and anxiety will help optimize the immune system. if needed, you can add therapeutic natural supplements like:


V4B StressLess for Bulldogs and French Bulldogs soft chews are suitable for long-term use.


Make sure that the puppy is on a balanced-quality “puppy diet.” If needed, you can boost it with


Boost your pup’s immune system by adding an immune support supplement like



Your bully demodex red mite resides deep in the hair follicle. There are often secondary infections such as bacteria and yeast.

You will need to bathe him with a follicular flushing antiseptic shampoo like

Bulldog Skin Infection Bundle - Ultimate


You can use some flea preventives that are effective against the Demodex mite. Most of them require once a month or once every three months oral or topical application


For more serious cases, you might need to add a few months of daily oral ivermectin.

Demodex in Bulldog and French Bulldog Puppies PROGNOSIS

You should see improvement within 2-3month with all the hair growing back and the problem is gone (neg scrape)

Spaying a 4.5-month-old English Bulldog Puppy

Regarding your spay question, please read my article HERE

Good Luck

Dr. Kraemer, Vet4Bulldog

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The information provided on this platform is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian regarding any medical condition. It's important to always consider professional medical advice promptly and not to delay seeking it based on information you've read on this platform. Any reliance on the information provided here is entirely at your discretion.

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