Does your dog scratch more than usual? Ticks may be one of the main causes of this behavior. Waggy's invites you to read this article and discover what they are, how they are spread, the symptoms they cause in your pet, the diseases they cause, prevention measures and many other topics.
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What are ticks on dogs?
Many of us when mentioning the word ticks, the first image that comes to mind is that of an insect, however we are wrong. Ticks actually belong to the group of arachnids like scorpions, mites and spiders. Likewise, ticks can be considered external parasites since they feed by sucking the blood of an animal or a human. When this process is carried out, they also become carriers of certain diseases and their presence in our pets can go unnoticed for several days.
How does a dog get ticks?
The term contagious for this type of issue is a bit misleading since ticks do not act like a virus. It can really be said that they “choose” their guests. Dogs can contract ticks when they come into contact with infested areas, such as tall grass, bushes, forests, or areas with dense vegetation where ticks can live. When a dog enters an infested area, ticks can latch on to the dog's skin. They generally seek out areas of the body with thinner skin, such as the ears, neck, armpits, and between the toes, to begin their feeding process.
Symptoms of dogs with ticks
Our furry dogs are unique and very different from each other, which is why the symptoms they present will also be unique. Below Waggy's describes some symptoms considered general, however, remember that if you have any questions it is best to go or ask for support from your veterinarian:
Changes in behavior
The presence of ticks can cause a dog to become irritable, nervous or depressed.
Ticks often cause intense itching in the area where they attach, leading to excessive scratching or licking by the dog.
Changes in coat
The presence of ticks can cause hair loss in specific areas. You can also see red or irritated areas on the skin, so it is advisable that you know how to comb a dog to avoid further damaging the irritated area.
The skin around the area where the tick attaches may become inflamed and tender.
Limping or difficulty walking
If ticks attach to the paws or between the toes, the dog may limp or show discomfort when walking.
Changes in appetite
Some dogs may experience loss of appetite due to general discomfort caused by tick infestation. You may have to read the article: My Dog Doesn't Want to Eat to know what to do in these situations.
Ticks can transmit diseases such as Lyme fever, which can cause fever in dogs.
In some cases, nodules or lumps may form under the skin where ticks have fed.
The presence of ticks and the diseases they can carry can make a dog feel tired or lethargic.
What diseases do ticks cause in dogs?
Our furry dogs can be infected by ticks through saliva, transmitting various diseases such as the following:
It is a disease caused by parasites of the genus Babesia, which are protozoa that infect the red blood cells of dogs. Ticks of the genus Rhipicephalus (previously known as Boophilus) are the main vectors. Symptoms may include fever, lethargy, loss of appetite, yellowing of the mucous membranes and skin, and anemia.
This disease is caused by the bacteria Ehrlichia canis and is transmitted by the dog tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus). Symptoms can vary, but some common signs include fever, loss of appetite, lethargy, swollen lymph nodes, and clotting problems.
It is a disease caused by the protozoan Hepatozoon canis. Ticks of the genus Rhipicephalus can act as vectors. Symptoms may include fever, constipation in dogs , intestinal inflammation accompanied by gas in dogs , muscle pain, weight loss unrelated to diet such as being on a barf diet , and joint problems. Additionally, the infection can also affect the dog's muscles and tissues.
How long can the tick stay on dogs?
The length of time a tick can be on your furry will also depend on various factors such as the life stage of the tick, the species of tick, and how quickly it is detected and steps are taken to remove it. In general, ticks go through four stages of development: egg, larva, nymph and adult and the life cycle of this parasite is 2-6 years.
How to remove ticks from dogs? Treatment
Currently, there are many methods and products with scientifically proven compounds to prevent and eliminate tick infestation in dogs such as the following:
Pipettes are liquid products that are applied directly to the dog's skin, usually on the back of the neck. The liquid is absorbed and distributed throughout the dog's fat layer, offering protection against ticks and fleas. The duration of protection can vary, but many pipettes offer protection for approximately 1 to 4 weeks, depending on the brand and formulation.
Chewable tablets are tablets that the dog can swallow. These contain ingredients that kill ticks and fleas when they feed on the dog. Duration can vary, but some chewable tablets offer protection for a month.
Flea and tick collars release active substances that disperse through the dog's fur, offering protection against ticks and fleas. Duration varies depending on the brand and type of collar, but many offer continuous protection for several months.
Either way, it is important to follow specific product instructions and consult with a veterinarian before choosing a treatment method. Some products may have contraindications for dogs with certain medical conditions or sensitivities.
In case the dog does not like to visit the veterinarian, I recommend that you give him Waggy's brand puppy treats because they contain CBD for dogs , which helps a lot to level the stress and anxiety levels in dogs before go to your session, which will be beneficial for everyone. In addition, one of its other ingredients is Omega 3 for dogs , a necessary and essential component for the development of the puppy.
How to eliminate ticks in the house?
- Examine your furry friend's fur.
- Use fine tweezers or a tick remover to remove ticks from your dog's fur. Make sure to grab the tick near the head and remove it with a firm, steady motion.
- Do not use bare hands to remove ticks. Wear gloves and avoid crushing them with your fingers, as this can increase the risk of infection. Place the ticks in a bowl of alcohol to make sure they are dead before you get rid of them.
- Bathe your dog with a flea and tick shampoo. Make sure you follow the product instructions and cover your dog's entire body. This will help remove any remaining ticks and prevent new infestations.
- Vacuum all areas of the house, paying special attention to carpets, rugs, cracks in the floor, and other areas where ticks could hide. After vacuuming, throw away the vacuum cleaner bag immediately, as ticks can survive in it.
- Use approved chemicals to control ticks in the home. They can be sprays, powders or liquid treatments. Be sure to follow product instructions and protect pets and people during application.
Tips to prevent ticks in dogs
- Use specific products such as pipettes, chewable tablets or flea and tick collars recommended by your veterinarian.
- Examine your dog regularly, especially after spending time outdoors. Pay attention to tick-prone areas, such as ears, neck, armpits, paws, and between toes.
- Keeps your garden and outdoor areas clean. Trim tall grass, remove undergrowth, and make sure there is no debris where ticks can live.
- Ask your veterinarian about available vaccines to prevent tick-borne diseases, such as the Lyme disease vaccine.
- Always follow your veterinarian's recommendations and guidelines regarding tick prevention. They can offer specific advice based on your dog's geographic location and individual needs.
In conclusion, in this article with Waggy's we learned that prevention, early detection and proper treatment are essential to managing ticks on dogs. Using anti-flea and tick products, carrying out regular check-ups, maintaining a clean environment and consulting the veterinarian are essential measures to ensure the health and well-being of pets, thus avoiding diseases transmitted by these parasites.