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Tick alert!

Tick alert!

The season for ticks is open. As cat and dog keepers, we should think how to protect our pets. The pet care market offers a full range of securing products, from drops and collars to tablets and ultrasonic deterrents, but no preparation can provide 100% safety and this is why it is so important to check the pet after each walk.

Where to look for ticks? Actually, we should expect to find them everywhere but there are areas on the dog body which ticks like more, such as ears, neck, armpits, paws, belly and tail.

If you notice a tick stuck into the skin, you should remove it quickly and safely. Remember not to apply anything on the skin before doing that! To get rid of the unwelcome guest safely, you will need a pair of disposable gloves, tweezer and a disinfectant. There are two commonly used methods of removing ticks each having its supporters and opponents. One method consists of gripping the tick close to the skin and pulling the tick straight out, along the axis of penetration, with a slow and firm movement. The other method uses a device designed to lift up and twist off the tick. It is up to the pet owner to decide, which method is safer.

After extracting the tick, make sure that it came out whole. Always avoiding squeezing or crushing the tick because this could get your dog infected with babesiosis. How to get rid of the removed tick? Just place it in a small container, “drown” it in a few drops of alcohol and wait a few minutes.

Do not forget to disinfect the bite area. Now, watch your pet for two weeks, looking for any change in behavior. The typical symptoms of tick-borne diseases include apathy, weakness, fever, paleness of mucous membranes, nausea, diarrhea or brown discoloration of the urine (hematuria). If you notice any of these symptoms in your pet, take it to a veterinarian for thorough examination as soon as possible.

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