Your dog may smell great and seem friendly, but your porch is not the perfect place to socialize. A few ticks can cause many problems including skin infection and neurological effects. So take a few precautions before letting your dog get outside: spray down your couch or other areas of your house with tick-repellent, check yourself regularly for ticks, and consider scheduling a tick removal appointment with a vet or pest control company.
A tick is much more than a nuisance: it’s a pest that can transmit some serious diseases to humans and their pets. They are parasitic organisms that bite you and make you sick. They can infect you with diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and other tick-borne diseases. Dog ticks are not just found outside in wild areas of grass, but also inside homes. Homeowners often find ticks on their dogs inside the house. While most tick bites go unnoticed for two to three days before any signs of infection occur, such as itching or hair loss near the wound, it’s possible for your pet to carry and pass on illnesses like Lyme disease. This disease causes fever and rashes in dogs with some experiencing joint problems, cardiac issues or nervous system disorders.
Depending on where you live, different kinds of ticks will call your backyard their home. Most people are familiar with dog ticks but many do not realize that squirrel ticks and deer ticks also call yards their home too. Luckily these types of ticks tend to be found more in woodland areas then in backyards so let’s discuss the most common backyard pest tick: the dog tick!
How does a tick get on a dog?
Dog Ticks come from trees or tall grasses (think weeds). They will also come from the ground. Ticks are a very common cause of bites, and are also very difficult to distinguish from fleas. Many people think it is fleas when it is actually a tick.
It is best to check dogs during early spring before they shed their fur, but ticks can be found any time of year. Most ticks will only attach themselves to the surface they land on so spend some time combing over your dog’s coat and anything that comes in contact with him/her, like grass or brush, with your fingers.
How many ticks should owners be concerned about?
Many states have limits on the number of dog ticks a dog can have, with some limitations being: under one every 30 days, under one every 30 days and under one every 45 days. These numbers can vary by state. If you ever find a tick on your dog, remove it to avoid infection. Don’t worry about ticks being found within his/her fur because they will not attach themselves to hair depending on the thickness of it. (Source)
How to remove those pesky ticks?
There are many different methods that can be used to remove a tick from your pet. The most common way is to simply pick them off with tweezers. You can also use a flea comb to remove ticks and avoid the risk of your pet getting fleas too. There are different types of tick removal tools which can be purchased at your local pet supply store.
The most effective methods are those which cause minimal discomfort to your pet. One method that has been proven highly effective is the use of CO2 bulb syringes and weapons such as pointed tweezers or stainless steel blades (Source).
Should you have not removed a tick within 24 hours, it will become hard and indigestible, causing no harm but possibly still attached on your dog or in his/her fur. This can cause complications, including infection and death.
Also Read: How to tell if a dog has a fever?
If you have removed a tick from your dog, do not apply any chemicals to the site of the tick as this will only cause more problems. It is best to contact your veterinarian for advice, as they are trained experts in this area and know what to do. They should be able to provide you with a home remedy for removing ticks for your pet.
If you have taken the time to remove the tick yourself; please check it for signs of illness. This will allow you or your veterinarian a better chance at treating your dog if one has been infected with a disease such as Lyme disease or Rocky Mountain spotted fever (Source).
Many people claim their pets get ticks because they like to be outside and run around. While this may be true, there are other reasons why some pets are more likely to get a tick:
Dogs that live in isolated areas or areas with dirty air have an increased amount of ticks. Dogs who spend time in areas such as parks, forests, or open fields can pick up ticks. Ticks will also attach themselves to dogs who groom themselves excessively. Dogs that spend a lot of time outdoors are more likely to pick up ticks from infected animals brought indoors (Source)..