When pets investigate shrubbery and bushes, piles of cut brush, and wild undergrowth, they may bring back unwanted hitchhikers: ticks. These arachnids feed on blood and prefer to bite and attach to a pet on the neck, in the ears, in the folds between the skin, on the face, or between the toes.
Ticks generally drop off your pet when they’re full of blood, but it can take several days for this to happen. During this time, they can transmit several diseases to pets (and their humans!), including Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and babesiosis.
Check your pet often for the presence of ticks, especially in tick-prone areas and after camping or hiking. If you find a tick on your pet, remove it promptly to reduce the chance of disease transmission. Here’s what to do:
- Put on a pair of rubber gloves and grab some tweezers.
- With the tweezers, grab the tick’s body and pull it straight off your dog without twisting or jerking as you pull.
- Examine what you’ve removed to be sure that you’ve removed the tick’s head as well as the rest of the body. If the head appears to have been left behind, use a needle dipped in alcohol to remove it.
- Kill the tick by putting it in a bowl of alcohol, and clean the area from where you pulled the tick with soap, water, and alcohol.
Prevention is the best approach to tick management. Keep areas where your pet plays outside mowed and clear of fast-growing weeds, and maintain a tick-free yard with Adams™ Yard Spray. Kill any ticks that have latched onto your pet with an Adams™ Flea and Tick Shampoo, Adams™ Flea and Tick Spray, or Adams Plus Pyrethrin Dip, or use a topical anti-tick Spot On® treatment, such as Adams™ Flea & Tick Spot On® for Dogs and Cats. And, learn the symptoms of Lyme disease in dogs and cats, so you can continue to keep an eye on your pets.