With the warmer weather approaching in the city come TICKS!
Ticks are active at any point when the temperature is above 4 degrees Celcius.
This year is predicted to be especially bad for ticks since there were multiple warm days this winter when ticks could be active.
Ticks “quest” on the edge of grasses/leaves with their front legs out waiting for a target to latch onto.It is a common misconception that they are only found in dog parks or very heavily wooded areas. They can be present in your local park too – every dog is at risk if they are walking outdoors When a dog or other animal walks by, the tick uses its front legs to grasp onto the target and then it crawls up to a suitable location to feed.Ticks are especially fond of warm, dark, moist areas. Common locations include in the armpit, between the toes and around the ears, but they can be present anywhere on the dog.
Ticks need to feed for multiple hours (at least ~12h, generally) in order to pass diseases on via their saliva and mouthparts.Ticks should be removed as soon as possible to avoid damage to skin or transmission of diseases. You can do this by either using tick removers which are available for free at The Animal Clinic, or tweezers in your home
- If using a tick remover, place the flat edge in line with the dog’s skin and ensure that the opening goes around the tick’s mouth. Gently twist back and forth to loosen the connection between them – do not pull too hard or you may leave the mouthpiece in your animal!
- If using tweezers, gently pinch the tick at the base where it is
attached to the animal and pull.Ticks start out about the size of a toothpick head before they have fed, then gradually get bigger as they fill with blood and stay attached to the host. They can be commonly mistaken for warts or skin tags – do not let them fool you!Multiple preventative measures can be taken to control ticks.
- Medicating your pet
Oral medications include Bravecto, Simparica and NexguardTopical medications include K9 Advantix II
- Disrupting the tick’s environment
Keep your grass mowed short to avoid giving the ticks an environment to quest.If a tick is found on your animal, the tick itself can be tested for various diseases to see if your pet is in danger. We also recommend a tick borne disease panel approximately 2 months after a tick has been found on your pet.Written by Dr. Emily Chris; The animal clinic does not retain copywrite to images above – all images present from google quick search