The tick is a small mite likely to cling to your dog’s coat after a walk. If not removed quickly, it can transmit sometimes fatal diseases to your four-legged friend. To guarantee the well-being of your animal, it is essential to regularly monitor its coat and treat it with suitable products. Why and how to protect your dog against ticks?
Why protect your dog against ticks?
Unlike the flea, the tick belongs to the mite family. It measures only a few millimeters and feeds on your dog’s blood for two to three days. It then leaves its host by dropping to the ground.
Ticks usually live in tall grass, thickets, underbrush, and bushes and cling to your pet as it passes by. Long-haired dogs are more likely to catch it. After a bite, the tick can leave a small wound like a bite, or even a small inflammatory granuloma (swelling). Even worse, it can transmit certain deadly diseases by inoculating parasites into your dog’s blood, such as:
· Piroplasmosis: this disease causes the destruction of the dog’s red blood cells and can be fatal if not treated quickly. Symptoms are usually anemia, fever, or dark urine.
· Lyme disease (or borreliosis): it is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. The first signs of the disease can appear between two to five months after infection and are generally fever, fatigue, muscle or joint pain, anorexia…
· Anaplasmosis or ehrlichiosis, a disease with symptoms similar to those of piroplasmosis which leads to a faster death.
How to protect your dog against ticks?
To thrive, ticks need heat and humidity. In France, they are mainly active in spring and autumn. Since they can survive several months without feeding, it is recommended to be careful all year round. Because of the deadly diseases that ticks can transmit, the best way to protect your dog is through prevention.
If you are camping with your dog or after each walk, inspect your pet thoroughly. Tick control can be done by caressing it, brushing it, washing it… The most important thing is to find the parasite as soon as possible in order to avoid complications. According to recent studies, when the tick bites, it takes about 8 hours of contact for there to be contamination. They usually cling around “hidden” areas like the ears, neck, armpits, or between the dog’s fingers. They like to lodge where the skin is thin with few hairs.
To protect your dog against ticks, there are pest control products with a repellent effect. These treatments are effective against both ticks and fleas. They come in different forms:
· The pipette or spot-on: easy to use and effective, it is applied between your dog’s shoulder blades and protects him for up to four weeks. This product is ideal for eliminating ticks while ensuring a repellent action.
· The spray: it is sprayed on the coat and helps to destroy ticks. Its remanence is about four weeks.
· The collar: it eliminates ticks and prevents new infestations. Its advantage: its duration of action against parasites (200 days).
· Shampoo: it has no residual action but is effective as an attack treatment if the tick is already present.
These treatments help protect your dog against deadly tick-borne diseases. You can also vaccinate him against diseases such as piroplasmosis. This type of vaccine limits the risks, especially if your animal is very exposed. Do not be reluctant to take advice from your veterinarian.
Good to know: anti-tick treatments are not the same for dogs and cats. Remember to check that the product is suitable for your animal.
My dog has a tick: how can I remove it?
When a tick attaches itself to your dog, it is important to remove it as soon as possible, before it begins to feed. The most difficult thing is to remove the rostrum, the part of the tick embedded in the skin. For this, do not use tweezers or a lighter: the most effective tool is a tick remover for cats. It allows removing the body of the tick in its entirety.
Once you have your tool in hand, follow these steps:
– spread the hair of your dog.
– place the hook under the tick passing from the side and turn gently without pulling (as if you were trying to unscrew the tick).
– make sure that the tick is entirely removed.
– disinfect the wound with a conventional disinfectant.
Once the tick is removed an embedded fully ticks on dogs, watch for any complications. If your dog shows any other worrisome symptoms after a bite, such as unusual fatigue, weight loss, fever, or urinary problems, take him to your veterinarian. Dog Realted news at mediatakeout.