Tick Removal: What you need to know
Ticks spread diseases like Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis and babesiosis. Your dog can encounter ticks on your lawn, in the woods, when romping through fields and in the garden. If your dog spends a lot of time outdoors, they’re likely to encounter a tick at some point or another in their lifetime.
Transmission of pathogens can take place in as little as three to six hours following a bite from a tick, so it’s important to remove ticks from your dog as soon as possible. It’s also very important to remove the tick the right way. If you tear the tick off your dog’s body incorrectly, the mouth parts could be left behind inside your dog’s body, and that could lead to infection. Here’s what to know.
How to Remove a Tick
You’ll need a pair of fine-point tweezers to remove the tick from your dog. If ticks are a problem that your dog experiences regularly, you can also buy a tick removal hook to make pulling ticks off easier.
Check your dog for ticks when they come indoors. Feel your dog’s body starting at the top of their head and moving down. Pay particular attention to the creases in the folds of their skin, like the area behind their ears and under their tale. Ticks like dark, moist parts of the body – so look in the folds between the legs and the body. When you feel the tick, it will feel like a bump that doesn’t belong on your dog’s body.
To remove a tick:
- Spread your dog’s fur so to reveal the tick more clearly.
- Use the tweezers to grasp the tick. Grasp the tick as close to your dog’s skin as possible.
- In a slow, steady motion, pull straight upward.
When to See a Vet
Take your dog to see a vet if they develop a fever, lethargy or swollen lymph nodes. Most of the time, dogs do not develop symptoms that would require them to se a vet – so try not to worry!
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