Pet Tips on 95.3 The Beach: Ticks

Dr. Joel Conn’s segment “Pet Tips” aired Monday on 95.3 The Beach! The topic was “Ticks.”  Tune in every Friday morning at 10:40am to hear more Pet Tips!

Click Here to Listen…

This week on Pet Tips We’re going to talk about Ticks

First, let’s discuss a few common tick myths:

  • Myth:  I only need tick prevention in the rainy months!
  • Fact:  Ticks are around year round.  The immature ticks (nymphs) that are out during dry periods may only be the size of a freckle and hard to spot on a furry creature.
  • Myth:  I don’t need a tick preventative because I am able to manually remove any ticks my pet acquires.
  • Fact:  While it is true that it requires about 48 hours for ticks to transmit disease, it can be very easy to miss a tick on a pet if they are not on a preventative.
  • Myth:  Tick preventatives are highly toxic
  • Fact:  This is true of some of the older generation products.  The products that your veterinarian recommends are very safe and have been extensively tested.
  • Myth:  My pet has not had a tick in years. His current illness can’t be due to ticks!
  • Fact:  Just like in humans, tick borne illnesses can hand around for years or even for life, potentially causing disease a long time after exposure.

The truth is that ticks can pose an extremely serious risk to both people and pets, leading to the spread of diseases like Lyme disease and ehrlichia, causing tick paralysis, and leading to autoimmune diseases like chronic fatigue syndrome and hemolytic anemia.

The Good News is that ticks and tick borne illnesses can be easily prevented.  There are a number of very effective and safe products on the market, available as topicals or prescription collars, many of which also contain mosquito repellents and flea control. 

If a tick does manage to attach, it can be easily removed with a pair of fine tweezers.  Grasp near the head, twist slightly as you pull the tick from the skin.  Rubbing alcohol may also help to promote tick detachment.  Be sure to kill the tick prior to disposing of it.  If you are concerned, check with your county laboratory, as most will provide inexpensive testing for the tick for lyme disease.

This is Dr. Joel Conn from Pismo Beach Veterinary Clinic.  I’ll be back next week with more pet tips.   For more information, visit us online at pismobeachvet.com or come see us at 990 Price Street, Pismo Beach.   We are open 7 days a week

Veterinarian/Owner of Pismo Beach Veterinary Clinic

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