As the weather gets warmer, ticks on dogs can be a big problem. But remember, not all ticks are created equal — there are wood ticks and deer ticks. It’s the deer ticks that cause Lyme disease and is far more dangerous for your best friend.
So what is the best way to keep these critters off your dog? Here are some of our recommendations to protect her this summer:
- Topicals – These are easy to administer by placing on your dog’s skin up around the neck and between the shoulder blades. Frontline Top Spot is the leading topical tick repellent. Wal-Mart also sells their own brand, Pet Armor, which is less expensive.
- Collars – We like combining a tick collar with a topical especially if you live in and around wooded areas. A collar like Preventic lasts for about three months and costs about $20.00 from leading providers. Amazon often has the best deals when it comes to this preventive.
- Bathing – If you have found that your dog has run into an area with a large amount of ticks and you would prefer not to have to pick them off of her, get a good tick shampoo and bathe her. This type of shampoo will normally kill ticks on contact. After you have done this, make sure to use either a topical or a collar in the following days.
- Your home – Ticks typically congregate in shrubs, bushes and trees around your house. Make sure these are all trimmed back to keep the tick population down.
Part of the issue with ticks and tick bites is that you may not see any symptoms for anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks. Therefore, you really need to be vigilant about checking your dog for ticks.
In the height of the season, make sure to brush or comb your dog every day. Ticks that are not yet attached to the skin should come off in your comb or brush. For dogs with longer coats, push the hair backward so you can see the skin. If you find a tick, don’t remove it with your fingers because you can get a disease as well. Get a pair of forceps or tweezers and pull the tick out that way. If that it leaves a red mark, put a little Neosporin on the wound.
Make sure your dog stays healthy throughout the summer tick season. If you suspect he has been bitten by a deer tick, get your dog to the vet right away for treatment of possible Lyme disease.
Image Credit: istockphoto.com
What do you think is the best treatment for ticks on dogs? For more information on seasonal safety for your pet, click the links below!