Being tick aware is so important not only for your pets health but for yours aswell.
What is a Tick?
A tick is a small eight legged, spider like creature, with an egg shaped body. Ticks are parasites, this means they need a host to feed on to survive.
Where do Ticks come from?
Ticks can be found mainly in woodland and grassland areas where you may find a good population of livestock or wildlife. Unlike Fleas, Ticks cannot jump therefore they will be lurking on long grass, bushes and any other vegetation that either you or your pet will brush past.
What happens if a Tick lands on your pet?
Once on its host the Tick will bury its head under the surface of the skin and begin to feed. Ticks will often go unnoticed until full up with blood as they start off really small and expand as they drink and store blood.
What should I do if I find a tick on my pet or even myself?
If after your walk or during your walk you see a tick you can simply brush it off or remove it if it hasn’t attached itself. Unfortunately Ticks are not like mosquitoes that will feed for a few seconds and go, Ticks are in for the long term and will stay on its host for several days this is why it is important to remove the Tick as soon as it is spotted. There are several methods on how to remove a tick but the proper and safe removal can only really be done with pointed tweezers or a special Tick removing tool. To remove the parasite with tweezers you must grip it as close to the skin as possible and pull up vertically which will hopefully ensure that it is completely removed. If you are using a Tick removing tool please read the manufacturers removal instruction before use. On safe removal keep an eye on the area to ensure no infection builds up or changes to the skin colour occur. if it does seek immediate professional help from your vet/doctor. Some Ticks can carry and pass on some nasty diseases so it’s always good to work on the side caution.
What if I can’t remove the Tick or some of the tick is remaining?
If you are unconfident in the Tick removal or you have removed it but the head has remained under the skin it would be advisable to seek your Vets help. Most of the time if the head remains it will work itself out of the skin like a splinter or thorn does but you know that there is that chance that it won’t dislodge and consequently it will cause an infection that will need treating with antibiotics so do get it checked out by a professional.
How do I prevent Ticks biting my pets or even myself?
There are some really good preventative treatments from Ticks for your pets that are available from your local Pet shop these are usually the same treatment that you use for treating your pets for fleas. You may also purchase similar products from your local veterinary practice. To prevent Ticks biting you use a good insect repellent on your bare skin where you cannot cover up with clothing. Try to avoid going off the beaten track when out walking and areas that are densely populated with livestock.