Can my kids get lice from the chickens???

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by khable, Oct 29, 2007.

  1. khable

    khable Songster

    Mar 16, 2007
    LaGrangeville, NY
    Quick question, my kids turned up with head lice... YUCK!!!

    Just wondering if they could have come from the chickens??? or was it just from other kids at school??


  2. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    I'll start with a quote from my mom, "Having head lice is not shameful, but keeping them is!"

    You can relax about the chickens, lice are pretty species specific. Even in humans, there are three distinct species of lice - head, body and pubic, and each tends to prefer it's own environment and has anatomy designed for it. IE, head lice and pubic lice have different types of claws/legs - one for coarse hair and the other for head-type finer hair.

    While a stray lice from the chickens might get on you if you have a really bad infestation, they won't be able to reproduce on you and would die within a day or so.

    Head lice are endemic and they could get them from just about anywhere. Good news is that they can only live about 24-48 hours tops off their human host.

    I've become quite an expert on headlice - we got them in our house this summer from a toddler friend of ours who got them probably at a birthday party. My daughter and one son got them, as well as the toddler's mom. Needless to say, it was all out war to get rid of them. While I had them, my husband who was sleeping right beside me all that time never had a one, but we were careful not to get our heads where they were touching.

    Sharing hats and hair brushes, or little kid having direct head to head contact etc are the most easy ways they spread, but they don't spread as easily as people think - they can't jump or fly, for instance. It usually takes direct contact to catch them from someone. Which, of course explains how I got them since I'm always rubbing heads with the kids - it's a quirky sign of affection in our house.

    Nix was the best stuff we found to use, along with combing or cutting out the nits as you find them. Use the shampoo as directed, then comb EVERY DAY very thorougly using good light and a magnifing class. Then use the medicated shampoo again in 10 days or as directed, and comb again for another couple days. The shampoo kills the living lice and the combing will get out any eggs. White or clear eggs are the cases of eggs that have already hatched. Dark eggs are the ones that have baby lice inside.

    Hope this helps!!
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2007
  3. Oh thats so sad for you, what a pain.
    Yes I get lice from my chickens if they have an unanticipated build up that I have missed, though it only happenes to my 16 year old hen. She is a lice magnet!!
    When i have her on my lap with the powder, the lice jump on to me but jump off just as quickly, they dont hang around, annoying little blighters. No they wont stay on humans!!! as arlee said so dont worry!!!
    Lice dont like squeaky clean hair ive heard, My son has never had them , touch wood.
    good luck.
  4. FluffyChickenMama

    FluffyChickenMama Songster

    Jun 13, 2007
    actually from everything I read when my daugther had lice a couple years ago Lice like clean hair because its easier to maneuver through.. I got info from the Health Dept and everywhere else I could think would have it.. I was insane about it.. couldnt even sleep for waking up thinking about it in my house..
  5. woops perhaps I had it the wrong way around, sorry!!!
    I must learn to keep myself under control and think before i Type!!
    clean hair versus dirty hair!
  6. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    Yes, they like the clean hair - they can grip it better. They don't like coarse or wiry hair - that's why African Americans are less likely to catch head lice - they don't like the texture of the hair.

    Interesting how much you can learn about something like head lice when you are up at night and can't sleep for having the heeby jeebies... [​IMG]
  7. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Crowing

    May 8, 2007
    Sorry you are having trouble with this at your house.

    This last year, I read that using a blow dryer on the hair, along with other control measures, was also helpful.
  8. paganfish

    paganfish Songster

    Sep 15, 2007
    Fleming, Colorado
    When we were kids we used to get them all the time from school...playing with other kids who had them. My mom got rid of them and even shaved us. (It was a kewl look and all the kids thought we were a kewl family!) and ever since then...anytime I feel ANYTHING crawling on my scalp I panic.

    Haven't had lice since that shaving! LOL!
  9. mullers3acers

    mullers3acers Songster

    Oct 9, 2007
    la porte, In
    I feel for you about 3 years back my youngest daughter's friend brought them to the house. The youngest got it first,then my oldest daughter, and then of course me. My husband has a limited amount of hair so he didn't get it. But it was 3 months of sure frustation as we kept passing it to each other. About $250.00 later it finally went away. But just hearing the word"lice" and my head begins to itch like now!!!! Good Luck!!!![​IMG]
  10. TxChiknRanchers

    TxChiknRanchers Songster

    Aug 18, 2007
    Southeast Texas
    Funny story about lice, the kids came home with them from school several years ago. So their mother was freaking out, she called my mom to ask for help............And Mom told her everything she could to try to get rid of them. However, Mom was a total wreck about lice or any other bug for that matter. and would not go over there. So the wife called her after a few days and asked if she was ok. Mom said well she was better but had just about scratched herself bloody just thinking about the lice. So mother asked if the kids were doing well and had gone back to school(wanted to know if the coast was clear to come over). The wife said sure they were fine but the fleas and ticks were still a problem(NOT) but she could come see the kids anyway. It was another week until we saw moms happy face! LOL I just told her the other day that it was the kids mom's way of getting back at her for not coming over. It has been about 15 years.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: