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Treating and Preventing Ticks

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Preventative care is best for ticks. Together we can find a product that works best for you and your pet to prevent occurrence. There are a range of options to ensure the optimal health of your friend. If treatment is required after a tick bite has occurred, our team has the expertise to get your pet back healthy.

If you are traveling to an area that has paralysis ticks, prevention medication is available. Call your local Peninsula Vet Care hospital before you travel!

It is very difficult to differentiate between the two main types of ticks commonly found on dogs and cats. Identification requires a history of travel in the past weeks and examination of the tick with a microscope.

Ticks can often be quite difficult to find, particularly on animals that have long fur. Ticks can attach to any part of an animal’s body, including inside ears and between pads and toes. Ticks can easily be confused with skin warts, wounds and scabs.

There are two main types of ticks commonly found on dogs and cats;

  1. The brown dog tick (Bush tick) is non-toxic; this tick is typically found in the cooler areas of Eastern Australia and should be removed from your pet by a vet.
  2. The paralysis tick (Ixodes holocyclus) is deadly. This tick is generally located in Queensland, NSW and North Eastern Victoria, including East Gippsland. Removal and potential treatment is required as soon as possible.

Tick paralysis occurs when ticks attach to and feed on dogs and cats. The tick releases a toxin into the animal as it feeds, causing paralysis and death.

It is best to take your pet to your local veterinarian for an examination, where we can safely remove and identify the tick. The use of a plastic tick hook makes this process much easier. Do not twist or squeeze the body of the tick, as this can squeeze more toxin into your pet.

Animals may become agitated and unable to settle, they may start to stagger when trying to walk or even collapse or you may notice a change in their bark/meow sounds. They may also appear to be breathing faster or having trouble breathing, may make unusual grunting sounds and there may be coughing, vomiting or gagging present.

After a thorough assessment from the veterinarian and identification and removal of the tick, patients need monitoring and hospitalisation for at least 48 hours. The vet will give tick anti-serum to help prevent or reduce the effects of the toxin.

There can be more than one tick attached to your pet, hospitalisation and close monitoring is essential, as patients can deteriorate 12-24 hours after tick removal.

The risks with tick paralysis include:

  1. Heart failure
  2. Aspiration or upper respiratory tract obstruction
  3. Respiratory muscle paralysis
  4. Death

Patients should be rested for 3-4 weeks following discharge from the hospital.

Your pet will recover completely if you seek immediate veterinary attention as soon as you suspect your pet may be suffering from tick paralysis.

The longer the paralysis tick feeds on the animal, the more likely it is that the animal will suffer from serious health problems, and the less likely there is of a full recovery.

In some severe cases, animals may die.

Tick paralysis cases can become very costly to treat due to the cost of the tick anti-serum, the many tests/medications required and the lengthy intensive care needed to aid a full recovery. Talk to our team about pet insurance or other plans to help with medical costs.

Have you heard about our new tick treatment price guarantee?

At each of our Peninsula Vet Care locations, we are able to secure better pricing from manufacturers on tick treatment products. And so, we are passing on those savings to you, our clients! We are so confident in our great new prices, that we have created our tick treatment price guarantee.

If you find a cheaper price from any local Peninsula business on any stocked tick treatment, we will beat it by 10%!

At Peninsula Vet Care, not only do we offer great prices, but also the expert advice to ensure you get the best product for your best friend.

Contact us today to find out more.

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