How do I know if my dog has ticks?
Ticks are crawling creatures of the mite family, vaguely resembling egg-shaped spiders. They have eight legs and can measure up to 1 cm in length. They feed on the blood of their host by clinging to their skin. Ticks are common in wooded areas and fieldsbut they can also be found in the garden, whether in tall grass, shrubs, the pile of firewood, climbing plants, etc.
Since ticks can transmit diseases, including Lyme disease, it is important to detect and remove ticks as soon as possible. It is strongly suggested that you have the tick tested to make sure it is not a carrier of disease.
Found a tick on your dog and don’t know what to do? Do not panic, this article will inform you on how to detect them, eliminate them and protect your dog against diseases transmitted by ticks.
Tick on a dog, our tips and practical advice:
You are most likely to encounter them in areas where deer, horses, and sheep live, between spring and fall, but they are active throughout the year in some areas.
Ticks don’t fly or jump, but climb or fall on your dog’s coat when you walk past them. Then, they cling to your animal’s skin and suck their blood for a few days before dropping.
Get into the habit of visually and manually inspecting your dog’s entire body after each outing, especially if he has walked in tall grass or near shrubbery.
Warning: although they seem to like around the ears and the neck, they can cling anywhere on the body, even between the fingers of your dog’s paws.
If during the inspection of your dog you find one or more ticks, it will have to be removed in a safe manner. Indeed, by pulling anyhow on the critter, you risk decapitating it and part of its head will remain attached to your dog’s skin. Also, avoid crushing it to reduce the risk of infection.
To remove a tick, you can use small pointed tweezers or tick tweezers specifically designed for this purpose. Grab the tick by the body and gently pull perpendicularly, without any twisting motion. Once the tick is removed from your dog’s skin, disinfect the wound. To protect yourself from the risk of infection, remember to wear gloves to protect you from ticks!
Here are 2 tweezers for you to easily and quickly remove ticks from a dog. For having tested one of them, it is an excellent quality product for removing ticks from your pet.
- Easily remove ticks from a dog
- Painless for the dog
- Removes the tick by rotation
- Little price!
Store the tick in a small jar and take it for a test to the vet to determine what type it is (only the Ixodes Scapularis tick carries Lyme disease) and whether it carries the disease . Also, it would be wise to take the opportunity to have your dog examined in case the tick has not been completely removed.
Oh yes, if you are not comfortable removing the tick yourself, take your dog quickly to the vet to have it removed.
3. What if the tick carries Lyme disease?
So you had the tick that bit your dog tested, and the result is positive. What will happen next?
Your veterinarian will suggest blood tests that will determine if your pet has been infected with this nasty disease-carrying tick. Depending on the type of tick it is and the test results, he may prescribe preventive antibiotics for your animal.
4. What are the symptoms of Lyme disease in dogs?
If you haven’t had the tick tested from the bite, monitor your dog for symptoms of Lyme disease. These can only occur 2 to 6 months after the tick bite, and consist of:
- lameness alternating from one leg to the other,
- polyarthritis with joint swelling,
- loss of appetite
See your veterinarian quickly after the appearance of any of these symptoms, so that he can prescribe an antibiotic treatment to cure your dog.
The best way to prevent ticks in dogs is with a specially designed antiparasitic treatment with permethrins and imidacloprid. It comes in the form of a liquid that is applied directly to the dog’s skin. However, you can also ask for an oral antiparasitic treatment if you have cats. Why?
Be aware that treatments including permethrin are highly toxic to cats, and that you will either have to separate your animals for a period of 48 hours following topical treatment, or prefer oral treatment.
Also, if you have young children who might not meet the drying period of the topical treatment, it would be better if you opted for the oral treatment. In both cases, the treatment is given every month during the 6 months when the ticks are most active.
Avoid places where ticks are found
In addition to pest control treatments, avoid areas where you know ticks are active as much as possible. Also trim shrubs and tall grass, pick up plant debris on your land, keep the grass on your lawn as short as possible and finally get into the habit of regularly inspecting your dog’s body.
If you want to buy a pest control treatment for dogs and thus avoid bites from ticks, fleas and mosquitoes then here is the product you need:
If you also notice the presence of fleas in the house and on your pet quickly come to this other article: How