What Are Ticks and What To Do About Them
The summer months are fun times to take your dogs hiking and outdoors. Although flees and ticks pose a problem for pets all year, however your pet is more susceptible during the warmer summer months to get flees and ticks. These pests can infect your dog as early as March and predominate through September in certain warm climates. Tick season can extend longer in warmer areas.
What Are Ticks
Adult ticks are the size of sesame seeds. Once ticks encounter a host, such as your dog, they latch on and burry their heads in your pup’s flesh. Underneath the flesh, they use your dog as a host to feed on his or her blood. The bites of ticks carry a bacterium that causes Lyme disease. Lyme disease in dogs often effects joints and kidneys where the dogs have a characteristic generalized pain and loss of appetite.
How Does My Dog Get Ticks?
Your dog can attract ticks from anywhere such as dog parks or your backyard. Ticks particularly like dark damp areas, so beneath tall blades of grass are the perfect place for ticks to wait for unsuspecting dogs. After a long excursion outdoors like a hike, dogs should be checked thoroughly for ticks from head to tail.
Where To Find Ticks On Your Dogs
Ticks are small and hard to see with the naked eye. Often, they are mistaken as skin tags or scabs. If you look carefully and slowly with a magnifying glass, the pests can be spotted. Ticks often hide in these areas on dogs and go unnoticed.
- Private Parts: These areas are dark and warm, and ticks enjoy the environment. The skin in the private parts tend to be thinner and easier for ticks to penetrate.
- Underneath the Collar: This dark and warm area is a popular hiding spot for ticks. This area requires frequent and careful inspection.
- Between the Paws: This area is the lowest to the ground and one of the first place of contact with ticks. Ticks could nest between the webbing of paws unsuspectingly.
- Inside of Ears: It is easy for ticks to hide in the folds of the ears. Once inside the ears, it is even harder to find them there.
- Around Eye: As your dog sniffs the ground with its nose, the tick can land on the eyes. If you notice a tick near your dog’s eye, contact your veterinarian.
How To Get Rid of Ticks
Once a tick has been spotted, their removal is vital for your fur baby to maintain its quality of life. Don a pair of gloves and equip yourself with tweezers. Use the tweezers to help you grab as far down the tick closest to your dog’s skin. This ensures that the body and head of the tick will be removed. Don’t twist or pinch as you are pulling the tick out as this could leave the tick’s head lodged under your dog’s skin. Place the tick in a bag and give to your veterinarian if your dog exhibits signs of Lyme disease.
Consult your vegetarian for preventative methods and how to treat infected dogs!