8 Types Of Small Black Bugs On Dogs And Solutions

Sometimes, you may see small black bugs on dogs. They are ectoparasites settling on your pet’s body and causing his skin to become red and itchy.

These crawling critters are tiny and fast; thus, you may find it difficult to deal with them. These little black bugs on your dog can be various, requiring different curing methods.

Let’s delve into my article to identify each type of these bugs and learn how to help your pet get rid of them. Scroll down for more!

8 Types Of Small Black Bugs On Dogs And Dealing Solutions

small black bugs on dogs

Small black bugs are often seen on furry pets. They are various and mostly cause skin troubles, such as redness, crusty skin, and irritation.

Regularly combing your pet’s fur and using standard dog shampoo may help you eliminate these insects.


What Are They?

Are tiny black bugs a flea? In most cases, yes. It’s the most common pet skin parasite you can see, even without a microscope.

They are small (about 1/8 of an inch), black or dark brown, and very good at jumping.

Their jumping ability allows them to move from one host to another in a second and, of course, quickly run away from your eyes, too.

Once the female fleas lay their eggs on your puppy, hundreds of fleas will appear and attack your poor dog.

Adult fleas make your canine feel incredibly itchy and scratch every time, especially in hot weather. You also may see the flea dirt on your pet’s skin.

It’s the flea poop, which appears as black sand and turns red when you dab it with a wet tissue.

How To Deal With Them?

Once you identify this tiny black bug on your dog, take action immediately to save your dog from flea infestation.

You can buy the flea treatment from a vet store, including anti-flea shampoo and anti-flea medication. Also, use a flea comb to brush your pet’s fur to remove the insect.

In addition, bathing your dog in vinegar can keep fleas away from your pet. 


What Are They?

Ticks or seed ticks are the second most common critters you can see in your pet’s skin. They are approximately 1/32 inch and can become bigger than 1 inch when engorged.

This external parasite is quite dangerous as it can transmit diseases to dogs and humans through its bites.

Some of the common diseases include Ehrlichia, anaplasmosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and Lyme disease.

Besides, ticks are possible reasons why your dog keeps scratching his privates. Therefore, removing ticks from your puppy as soon as possible is vital.

How To Deal With Them?

You can try to remove them by using tweezers. First, look for ticks on the dark areas of the fur, including behind the pet’s ears or under its legs.

Once you see a bug, grab it with tweezers and gently pull away.

Remember that you should grab as close to the skin as possible to ensure you remove the tick head. If you can not, still keep an eye on the area and seek medical help if needed.

Besides, you can take oral medication or topical medication for tick prevention.


What Are They?

Unlike the previous 2 types, mites can’t be seen by our naked eyes. Some common types of mites include sarcoptic mange, demodectic, and Cheyletiella.

You can identify their existence by looking for the significant skin irritation on your canine. Or sometimes, you can see the Cheyletiella look like dandruff slightly moving on your pet’s fur.

How To Deal With Them?

Mites are harmful to both dogs and humans. However, they are less common, and there are ways to eliminate them.

Well-diluted lime sulfur dip and Frontline Plus are useful methods that you can use. Keep your bedding and rooms clean to prevent the presence of mites.

If you think your dog gets some mites on him, seek help from the vet for further consultation.


What Are They?

Sometimes, lice are mistaken for small fleas, yet these black bugs on your dog are not fleas.

They are small (1/8 to 1/4 inch in length) and lay eggs on the hair shaft, which can be seen by close look.

Though lice don’t attack humans, we can’t underestimate them. Besides canine itching skin, lice are the reason for secondary skin infections in your pet.

How To Deal With Them?

You can use shampoo to remove lice on your canine’s fur. But if it does not work, talk to your vet for prescription medications.



What Are They?

Springtails are another little black bug on your dog, but unlike the previous ones, they don’t bite and bring no disease to your pet.

Its name is likely derived from its season since you will mostly see them in the late spring.

Springtails are moisture bugs that coincidentally enter your house and hide in moist places. And also, by accident, they get on your puppy.

Your canine also can carry these tiny jumping bugs on their body if they play around moist areas in your yard, such as a puddle.

How To Deal With Them?

Removing springtails is easy. You need to use a pincher and remove them from your pet’s fur. And that’s it!

Tiny Black Ants 

What Are They?

The tiny black ants are another bug that can latch on your pet’s fur. These little black bugs on your dog can come out from nowhere.

Your furry friend can get some of them if he plays on the soil with ants or steps on the ants’ nest.

Ants are not common parasites. However, if they get stuck in your dog’s coat, they can bite to find the way out.

How To Deal With Them?

Though ants are not as dangerous as the insects discussed above, they can cause discomfort for your pet.

If your canine has ants crawling on him, use a hair dryer to blow them away. Having your pet take a shower with standard dog shampoo will also help.

Remember that I’ve mentioned the ants’ nests. If they are from the fire ants and your canine steps on them, he will likely get some nasty bites.

Therefore, I highly recommend you keep your garden free of ants to avoid potential risks.

Moss Mites 

What Are They?

Moss mites are identified as shiny, round shapes on your pet’s fur. If you look closer, they look like poppy seeds.

The bugs are harmless and useful for some specific plants, compost piles, and soil beds underneath sheds as they assist in breaking down organic waste and releasing nutrients into the ground.

Moss mites don’t bite and spread any disease. They just accidentally get stuck on your puppy while he plays outdoors.

How To Deal With Them?

You can quickly brush your pet’s fur so the moss mites disappear. Or you can use a pincher.

These bugs can not jump or run away when you try to remove them. So, it will be easier for you.

Flea Beetles

What Are They?

If your pet likes to stay around the vegetable growing section in your yard, he may get some flea beetles on his body.

Are flea beetles harmful to dogs? No, they are harmless. They just enjoy the leaves on the plants but will not bite pets or humans.

Flea beetles have an oblong shape. They look like fleas (that’s why we call them this word in their name) and also can jump.

How To Deal With Them?

Though the bugs are harmless, they can be a nuisance to pets. Comb your puppy’s fur can help to remove them.

You can also bathe your pet with a standard dog shampoo to get rid of these small insects. Yet, I suggest you contact your vet if the situation is not better.

How To Find Small Black Bugs On Dogs?

How To Find Small Black Bugs On Dogs

Let Your Dog Lie On A White Sheet

First, let him lie on a white sheet to identify any small black bug on your dog. Then, you can use a hair dryer to blow his coat or a flea comb to brush his fur.

Pay attention to the fleas or flea dirt, including feces and red dried pieces dropped on the white sheet. The red spots are likely the blood resulting from the fleas’ bites.

Comb His Fur

Here is how you comb your pet’s fur to inspect for those insects.

You should focus on some position, such as his tail’s base, legs and thighs, neck and stomach, and around the ears.

If you see flea dirt appearing, take a tissue to rub it. After wiping, it may become red.

Another case is that you will see the bugs quickly crawling through the pet’s thick fur. Because they are fast, sometimes you can or can not catch them.

Or even they may disappear before you see them. Thus, it doesn’t mean your dog is clean if you don’t see any fleas.

Take A Bath For Your Pet

You can also find the tiny black bugs on your dog by bathing him. After that, looking carefully under good light, you may see little drowned bugs in the water. 

Pay Attention To Symptoms

When these bugs attack your pet, he may feel itchy and try to scratch or bite its skin. The most common place for the fleas to gather is your puppy’s buts.

You will see the skin get raw and red, and your dog may feel pain. Therefore, keep an eye on any of these symptoms to cure your dog.

Tips To Prevent Those Bugs

Tips To Prevent Those Bugs

Luckily, there are ways to prevent your pet from getting these annoying bugs.

  • I recommend you keep your dog’s living and playing area clean. Frequent and thorough vacuuming of your house is necessary to prevent the situation. If you buy any second-hand furniture, carpets, or other stuff, ensure they are clean and free of fleas.
  • You also should often trim and clean your yard. Thus, there will be no environment for the insects to grow, and your puppy can freely play. 
  • Set up a fence for your yard so no flea-bearing animal can come in. Exposure to strange animals should be limited.
  • Lastly, you should frequently inspect any signs of fleas on your canine. Once he is exposed to these insects, using flea shampoo treatment may help.

The Bottom Lines

The small black bugs on dogs are various. Though some are not dangerous, others can bite and cause skin irritation.

Plus, some bugs can be a source of disease, causing some health issues.

When you see your furry friend scratch or lick his body more often, inspect his fur. Some insects may leave the red spots trait on your puppy’s skin.

Frequently showering and cleaning living and playing areas will reduce the potential of getting these bugs. Talk to your vet about medication if needed.


Photo of author
Hi I am Mitchell. Dog Growth is a blog about dog caring and training where I share my experiences to my community. Hope you enjoy it!

Leave a Comment