Home Earwigs Earwig Bites: Dogs, Humans, Marks &How to Treat

Earwig Bites: Dogs, Humans, Marks &How to Treat

Do earwigs bite human beings and pets including dogs and cats? Find out more including the symptoms associated with the pincher bug bites in addition to how to deal with them.

Do Earwigs Bite/ Pinch?

Truthfully, they bite. This is evident by the presence of mouth parts. The Pincer on their rear can also create a pinching effect.

When you trap them and then hold them hostage, they are likely to get agitated and will therefore bite you as a way of self-defense.

The actual act of pinching may leave your skin with some marks at the end.

The bites and pinches from this insect are mild hence cannot be compared to not typical bites or stings from other dangerous insects.

What happens when an earwig bites you

  • The first thing that will draw your attention to the bite is the pain that results. This is because the bites break your skin.
  • Also, the bites could leave some marks on your skin and this could even be permanent. Blood may also ooze from the bitten area.
  • You are similarly likely to show some allergic reaction because your immune system is alive to any intrusion by foreign bodies.
  • There are other cases where there could be no symptoms or nothing happens completely.
what earwigs look like
A photo of an Earwig

Pincher Bug Bite symptoms and how they look like

The earwig bites can easily be confused with the bites from other insects. This is because they also grossly misunderstood from their anatomy.

Looking keenly at the symptoms, you can be able to dig out the differences.

The symptoms may not be obvious but studying the symptoms below, you will be able to understand them.

  • Two red marks on your skin. This is because the insects have two forceps which they use to bite. The marks look different from each other and they are separated by some distance.
  • If the bug bites hard and then you have some pain, blood is likely to ooze from your skin.
  • There are chances that redness and inflammation occur on your skin. As time passes, you could develop cellulitis.
  • Itchiness is also likely around the bitten areas.
  • There are some reported cases where you could present with blisters around the bitten area. These are unique and severe cases of the bites which need serious attention lest they lead to infection.
  • If the earwigs bite and then get embedded in the skin, then this would result in the formation of a hardened skin.
How earwig bites look like
Bites from earwigs

Earwig Bites Dogs & Cats?

pets cat and dog

It is poorly understood whether or not earwigs can bite cats and dogs.

It is also not easy to conclude with certainty that your pet has been bitten by an earwig.

This is because there are so many bugs that invade and bite dogs and cats.

However, the information available could help you understand that if the cats and dogs are a disturbance to the residence areas of the earwigs, then they could be bitten.

The earwigs would find residence in the holes and crevices in your house or the compound.

They would be interested in your house when the conditions outside are not favorable.

The dog’s feeding bowl is a very attractive environment for the earwigs. They thus would pinch and bite the dog if it struggles and attempts to feed and thus disturb the bug’s comfort.[1]

How to Deal with Earwig Bites

There are a number of ways you can undertake to handle earwigs. Here are just some of them:

Wash the bitten area

This is the initial and very first step that you should undertake. Use mild soap and some warm water. This is important because it will remove the bacteria and soil germs that could be transferred from the biting forceps to your skin.

Apply an ice pack to the bitten region.

This is also a very viable idea because it would help ease the pain and reduce the itchiness that is likely. If the area gets infected in the due course, then the ice pack would help to reduce the inflammation.

The icepack also reduces the temperature of the region and thus reduces chances of redness developing. The irritation that could follow the bite is also reduced by the ice pack.

Using a towel, dry the region and then apply an ointment

After applying an ice pack and the itchiness still persists, it would be wise to take a towel and then add an ointment and soothe the area as you pat it dry.

Before applying the ointment, you should make sure the skin is dry of any moisture. You can obtain ant-itch creams and ointments readily available in the stores and shops near you.

Use Neosporin and hydrogen peroxide

The combination constitutes antibiotics and anti-infective drugs. They are useful in the event that the bitten area develops secondary infection. Apply this mixture on the wound according to the guidelines given on the pack.

They both play independent roles but at the end of the day achieve a common objective.

The hydrogen peroxide keeps the infections away from the wound while Neosporin would make the healing to take place faster.

Seek medical attention

It is always important to as soon as possible report the bite case to your doctor.

This is because the doctor would have ample time to examine the bite and then give an input in terms of the best treatment.

The doctor will also be able to prevent secondary infections from ensuing.

Keep the earwig infested area dry.

The area that is bitten should always be dry and tidy. This is because the earwigs love moist areas and thus failure to dry the area attracts more bites in the future.

Moist places encourage their reproduction and thus denying them this convenience means their populations will not be propagated and thus die.

Apple Cider Vinegar

You should use unpasteurized and organic apple cider vinegar. You should apply the vinegar to the areas bitten so as to relive any burning sensation or itch from the bite.

Always use dilute vinegar because your skin could be sensitive to concentrated solution and thus would make the case worse.

Witch Hazel

It itchy feeling brought about by the bite. It does this because it has compounds called tannins that provide mild anesthetic properties. Use cotton ball to apply the product on the affected area for about 10 minutes.

Aloe Vera

Check out for fresh leaves of Aloe vera. Then apply sap from the leaves a number of times in a day till you no longer have the itching sensation around the bitten area.

It has natural compounds and amino acids that perform this role. The gel from the leaf also has some soothing property.


This is a native of the Americans. It has been used for long to treat insect bites and bee stings. Cut the leaves into pieces and then apply to the affected area.

This will be able to stop any allergic reactions that result from the bite or any itchiness as it promotes healing eventually.

There are other remedies that you can undertake to treat the bite from the earwigs. They are discussed below:

Emu Oil

It is extracted from the fat of the emu bird. It is able to take care of the itching and swelling that comes with the bite.  It is also able to help your skin to heal faster and prevents it from forming a scar.

Calendula Cream

It is also able to relive the itch and irritation from the bite. It also has some antiseptic properties that would be useful in the event secondary infections set in.

You can also use this cream to remove blisters when they form.[2]

Further Reading


[1] http://www.biospotactivecare.com/proactive-pet-care/home-and-yard-pests/earwigs-101/

[2] https://gofreedompestcontrol.com/treat-insect-bites-stings/