As the snow melts and the temperature rises, ticks become more active. Ticks remain alive through the winter, when the temperatures reach 40°F and above they become active again. Ticks are small blood sucking parasites that feed on both animals and humans. Their lifecycle is complex and involves one or more species of animals as hosts. A full blood meal for a tick can take 4-5 days, once full they drop off. While tick does drop off when full, disease can be spread in less than 24 hours. Ticks carry a number of serious diseases such as Lyme disease, Anaplasmosis, Erlichia Canis, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. There are different products on the market for the control of ticks. Topical (recommended) products are applied to the animal once a month. They come in liquid form and are absorbed into the hair follicles of your pet. Most of these products are water proof or at least water resistant. They vary in task from sterilizing the ticks, to killing them, to repelling. Collars are also available and can varying how frequently need to be replaced. Most, however, do lose efficiency once wet.
Tick borne illnesses are so prevalent on our area we treat multiple cases every week. For this reason, Interstate Veterinary Hospital recommends tick control products from March 1st through October 31st. These dates vary each year depending on when spring arrives and when we consistently stay under 40°F in the fall. We strongly believe in the aid of these products but also recommend you manually check your dog and yourself regularly.
Image credit: Pixabay | Used under CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) license.
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