The Troublesome Tick
When temperatures rise, pets tend to spend more time outside, either relaxing
in the sunshine, taking long walks or playing. While the fresh air and
exercise are great for them (and you!), it's important to be aware of
some outdoor risks — specifically, bugs and parasites that can bite
your pet and make him sick. But don't worry, taking a few precautions
before you head outside can help keep these pests away.
Ticks are attracted to motion, warm temperatures and the carbon dioxide
that your pet exhales. Ticks cannot jump or fly, so they climb onto objects
like fences or vegetation. They wait there for a human or animal to walk
by so they can drop onto an unwitting host and hitch a ride. Ticks can
carry different pathogens, depending on the area of the country in which
you live. Ask your veterinarian which ticks are prevalent in your area
so you can be on the lookout.
Once ticks find a host, they take a bite — though most tick bites
are painless, and your pet probably won't even feel it. The bite can transfer
pathogens to a pet, which can lead to disease, or the bite site can become
infected. If this happens, your veterinarian will often treat the infection
with oral antibiotics. Topical antibiotics aren't enough, as the infection
could have already spread through your pet's body, making it much harder
Keeping Ticks at Bay
One of the best ways to deal with ticks is to avoid them in the first
place. Don't take walks in the woods during prime season. Keep the grass,
trees and bushes in your yard trimmed, and clear away any brush where
ticks might like to hide.
Speak to your veterinarian about which of the available preventive products
are best suited to your geographic area and the age of your pet. These
products help kill ticks, but be sure you check with your veterinarian
before using them. Some products should only be used on adult dogs or
cats. The new generation of preventive products is highly effective at
tackling ticks, but only use one product at a time. Insecticide sprays
intended for use on clothing and/or humans should never be used on pets.
Most importantly, never use any product labeled for a dog on a cat.
Products labeled for dogs may contain pyrethrins or permethrins, which
can be extremely toxic to cats. Your veterinarian can advise you on the
best preventive products for your particular pets.
After your pet spends time outdoors, check him carefully for ticks, especially
in hard-to-reach places (ticks like to hide in warm areas, so be sure
to check folds of skin, under the arms, in the ears, between the toes,
etc.). Keep in mind that ticks are very tiny - some are as small as the
head of a pin. If you find a tick on your dog or cat, first of all, don't
panic. Try to remove the tick as soon as possible. Cats can remove ticks
during grooming, but not if the tick is in an inaccessible place, like
behind the ear. For safe removal, avoid touching the tick with bare fingers.
Use tweezers to take hold of the tick, and pull slowly and steadily. If
you can't remove the tick's mouthparts from your pet's skin, don't worry.
Once the body has been removed, the tick can no longer transmit pathogens,
and the area should heal on its own. Just tossing the tick down the sink
or toilet may allow it to survive and crawl out, so first put the tick
in rubbing alcohol to kill it. If you have a hard time removing the tick,
or are unsure how to do it properly, contact your veterinarian.
By taking a few simple precautions and checking with your veterinarian,
you can help keep your pet tick-free all summer long!
Get Your Doggone
Good Cookbook Today!
Noah's Ark Animal Foundation's Doggone Good Cookbook is here!
These cookbooks make excellent gifts for
all your animal-loving friends and family! Cookbooks
can be purchased at the shelter Tuesday through Friday from 1:00–5:00,
and Saturday from 10:00-4:00. You can also order cookbooks
from us and have them delivered directly to your door. Cookbooks are
$15.00 each, plus shipping and handling. Your purchase of our
Doggone Good Cookbook makes it possible for us to continue
In addition to over 200 of the best recipes submitted by friends of Noah's
Ark, the cookbook is a "whose who" of Noah's Ark residents and alumni,
with over 150 pictures of our (and your!) beloved animal companions. We've
also got Happy Ending stories, a place to keep track of your favorite
recipes, and a chapter devoted to dog and cat treats. Take
a peek inside and then order your cookbook! Bone
3 Happy Ending Stories
Added in April *-*-*
Kuranda Dog Beds