One day my farm hand came to me and asked me what the crusties were on some of the female alpacas. As i was investigating I realized I had munge in my herd. It looked like a scab, but bigger. Thinking it was a rash, I put some zink oxide (diaper rash ointment) on it and turned her back out.
A day or 2 later I looked at her again. Now both sides of her nose had crusty scabs. Now I know it wasn’t a rash and was something else so I read up on skin problems in alpacas.
After consulting the Field Manual by Dr. Norm Evans I realized it was Munge: Nasal Nyperkeratoxic Dermatitis and is common in alpacas. Causes for Munge aren’t really known nor are they sure which virus causes it. Some people say its caused by mites, others say it's not enough zink in their diets.
What to look for:
Munge usually is found around the nose and mouth, all though in severe cases, I've seen in on their legs, and chest too. The skin thickens up to a hard crust. The crust will split and either bleed or some puss will leak out.
The first is what is often called the alpaca witch's brew, an open wounds ointment for alpacas that actually works:
- 1 part Lotrimine - if dealing with the possibility of a fungus
- 1 part hydrocortisone - for the itching
- 1 part swat - for the flies
Mix these ointments together and apply on an open wound. Works great.
This one is a bit more involved:
Treatment is surprisingly simple and for my case very effective.
The Munge Cocktail as I prepared it:
- 100ml Gentamicin Piglet – No prescription required when using this strength
WEAR GLOVES!!!! DMSO allows the Ivermec and Gentamicin to penetrate skin. So when you mix this solution up and any time you handle it wear gloves.
Shake up the concoction thoroughly before each application. I soak a cotton ball in it and squeeze out the access. Catch your alpaca and dab the cotton ball on the affected area. Repeat every other day.
On off days use M-T-G. Shake thoroughly before each use. Again I use gloves and a cotton ball and dab it on the affected area. M-T-G is an oil product with Zinc. It softens up the scabs, assists in any zinc deficiencies and promotes hair growth.
This one is for the ones that don't want to mix anything and just buy something that will work. A bit more expensive too.:
You need to get perscription strength Frontline Spray from you vet. It can be expensive, but will last a long time and it actually works. Spray the affected area throughly every 3 weeks (no more, no less) for 4-5 treatments.