After any outdoor activity, it’s always a great idea to get in the routine of checking your dog for ticks. This is because ticks can transmit diseases in as little as 24 hours after attachment.
Around their face
Around their neck
Inside their ears
Under their arms and legs
Between their toes
If you do find a tick on your dog, it’s important to know how to safely get ticks off dogs. Follow this guide to learn how to remove a tick from a dog and dispose of it properly.
Tools You’ll Need to Remove a Tick
To remove a tick safely, you’ll need these supplies:
Latex or rubber gloves
Extra lighting and a magnifying glass
Tweezers or a tick removal tool (my personal favorites are the Tick Tornado and the Tick Twister)
Jar or small container with a lid
Triple antibiotic ointment
Steps for Removing Ticks From Dogs
Use caution when trying to remove ticks that are attached near your dog’s eyes, around their mouth, and inside their ears. If the tick is in an area that seems uncomfortable for your dog, don’t be afraid to call your veterinarian and ask for assistance.
Use the treats as distractions and rewards for your dog during the tick removal process. Here’s how to get ticks off dogs using tweezers or a tick removal tool.
Using Tweezers to Remove Ticks
If you are using tweezers to remove a tick, follow these steps:
Try to grab the base of the tick as close to your dog’s skin as possible. Try not to pinch your dog! Also make sure you are not squeezing the tick too tightly, as it may crush the tick and make it more difficult to remove.
Slowly begin to pull the tick out from your dog’s skin in a steady motion. Do not twist or jerk your hand while pulling the tick out. The goal is to pull the head of the tick out of your dog’s skin while it is still attached to its body.
Once the tick has been removed, examine it to make sure all body parts have been removed from your dog’s skin.
Using a Tick Removal Tool
If you are using a tick removal tool—like the Tick Twister—follow these steps:
Gently “hook” the body of the tick in the notch of the tool.
Rotate the tool clockwise or counterclockwise until the tick detaches from the skin (do not pull on the tick while it is still attached).
Once the tick has detached, lift the tick away from the skin.
Examine the tick to make sure all body parts have been removed from your dog’s skin.
What to Do If the Head of the Tick Gets Stuck in Your Dog’s Skin
If the head of the tick is still embedded in your dog’s skin after the body has been removed, there’s no need to panic.
Do not try to dig the head of the tick out of your dog’s skin. This will cause more irritation and inflammation and will open the skin to infection.
Instead, take your dog to the veterinarian to remove any remaining embedded pieces of the tick.
How to Kill a Tick
Once the tick has safely been removed, place it in a jar or small container that is filled with isopropyl alcohol and put the lid on the jar. The isopropyl alcohol will kill the tick.
Many veterinarians recommend keeping the tick in the container in case your dog starts to show any signs of illness. Different types of ticks can carry different diseases, so having your veterinarian identify the tick may help with a diagnosis.
Disinfecting the Skin
After disposing of the tick, you can tend to the tick bite area.
Gently clean the site of tick attachment with soap and water. Vetericyn Plus Antimicrobial Hydrogel spray can be applied to the area as well.
Continue to watch the area where the tick was attached. If you notice any redness or inflammation, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Preventing Tick Bites
Keep your dog on flea and tick prevention year-round.
There are very effective oral prescription products available, including Nexgard and Bravecto, that will provide great protection against fleas and ticks.
For over-the-counter flea and tick prevention, consider Frontline Plus or a Seresto collar for continued prevention.
By Jennifer Kvamme, DVM
It’s no fun having to remove ticks from your dog during the spring and summer months. Not only are these blood-suckers nasty to look at, all filled up with your pet’s hard won blood as they are, they are also notoriously difficult to dislodge, making it so you have to get up close and personal in order to assure success. Because left too long or not removed entirely, these buggers can cause some serious diseases. So, what can you do to keep your dog tick-free this season? There are many different methods for getting rid of and preventing ticks on a dog, and they work in different ways. Here are ten ideas for you to consider …
Using an over the counter spot-on medication that you purchase from your veterinarian, pet store, or online can be a very effective method for controlling both ticks and fleas. These medications are effective at keeping parasites at bay for up to a month. While these medications are great, you still need to be very careful about which one you use. Make sure you read all labels carefully, and if you have any doubts, be sure to get advice from your veterinarian before application.
Pills that are given once a month are readily available for dogs. These medications can work to kill both ticks and immature fleas and will disrupt the life cycle of fleas. They are easy to give and you won’t have to be concerned about small children and cats coming into contact with dogs immediately after application, as you might with spot-on treatments.
Bathing your dog with a shampoo that contains medicated ingredients will generally kill ticks on contact. This can be an inexpensive (though labor-intensive) method of protecting your dog during the peak tick season. You will need to repeat the process more often, about every two weeks, as the effective ingredients won’t last as long as a spot-on or oral medication.
A dip is a concentrated chemical that needs to be diluted in water and applied to the animal’s fur with a sponge or poured over the back. This treatment is not meant to be rinsed off after application. The chemicals used in dips can be very strong, so be sure to read the labels carefully before use. You should not use a dip for very young animals (under four months) or for pregnant or nursing pets. Ask your veterinarian for advice before treating puppies, or pregnant or nursing pets.
Collars that repel ticks are an additional preventive you can use, though they are mainly only useful for protecting the neck and head from ticks. The tick collar needs to make contact with your dog’s skin in order to transfer the chemicals onto the dog’s fur and skin. When putting this type of collar on your dog, you will need to make sure there is just enough room to fit two fingers under the collar when it’s around the dog’s neck. Cut off any excess length of collar to prevent your dog from chewing on it. Watch for signs of discomfort (e.g., excessive scratching) in case an allergic reaction to the collar occurs. Make sure you read the labels carefully when choosing a collar.
Another method of topical medication, tick powders work to kill and repel ticks from your dog. These powders should be used with care during application. Be sure that the powder you are using is labeled for dogs before use, as well as for your dog’s specific age. Also, make sure you check the label to make sure that the product is designed to kill ticks as well as fleas. This very fine powder can be an irritant to the mouth or lungs if inhaled, so use small amounts and slowly rub it into the skin. Keep powders away from the face and eyes when applying. You will need to reapply the product more often, about once a week during peak season. Some powders can also be used in areas where your dog sleeps, and in other parts of the household your dog frequents.
Another topical application of medication, tick spray kills ticks quickly and provides residual protection. Sprays can be used in between shampoos and dips, and when you are planning to spend time out in wooded areas — where ticks are most prevalent — with your dog. Be careful when using this product, and other tick control products, around your dog’s face, and do not use it on or around any other animals in the home.
Treat the House and Lawn
Keeping your lawn, bushes, and trees trimmed back will help reduce the population of fleas and ticks in your backyard. If there are fewer areas for these parasites to live and breed, there will be fewer of them to be concerned with. If you still have a problem, consider using one of the various household and yard sprays or granular treatments that are available from your veterinarian, pet store, or local garden center. Just be careful when using these products, as they can be harmful to animals, fish, and humans. If you have a severe problem or you are concerned about the proper handling of these chemicals, you might want to consider hiring an exterminator to apply yard and area sprays to control the ticks and fleas.
Check your Dog(s)
After a romp outside in areas where ticks could be lurking, be sure to carefully check your dog for ticks. Look between the toes, inside the ears, between the legs (in the “armpits”), and around the neck, deep in the fur. If you find any ticks before they have had a chance to attach and become engorged, you may have prevented serious illness for your pet. If you do find a tick attached to your dog, removal should be done immediately and carefully, making sure to get all parts of the tick’s body removed from the skin.
Keep Dog(s) Indoors
While you do have to take your dog outside a few times a day, it is probably not a good idea to allow him to stay outside for extended periods during the height of tick season. Preventing your dog from roaming through wooded areas where ticks are likely to be lying in wait is a very effective way of keeping your pet safe from exposure, but you will still have to check your dog over thoroughly, even after short walks through grass and brush. You may still have a few ticks wandering around your yard, but if you keep things tidy and use preventives for when your dog does go out and check your dog over for any rogue ticks that might have attached themselves, your dog should have minimal risk of becoming a meal for ticks this summer.
If your dog spends a lot of time outside, tick checks should be part of your daily routine. In many areas of the United States, ticks are active year-round, even after a killing frost. Here’s how to spot a tick—and what to do if one has grabbed hold of your pet.
Step 1: Scan for ticks
Start by running your fingers slowly over your dog’s entire body. If you feel a bump or swollen area, check to see if a tick has burrowed there. Don’t limit your search to your dog’s torso. Check between their toes, around their legs, the insides of their ears and all around their face, chin and neck.
Step 2: Is it a tick?
Ticks can be black, brown or tan and they have eight legs. They can also be tiny; some species are only as large as the head of a pin.
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Step 3: Safe removal
- Clean tweezers / tick remover
- Disinfectant or antiseptic cream
- Isopropyl alcohol
Stay safe! Always wear gloves while handling ticks to avoid contact with your skin.
- Grasp the tick as close to your dog’s skin as possible (without pinching your pet).
- Pull it out slowly in a straight, steady motion. Don’t jerk; anything left behind could lead to an infection.
Using a tick remover:
- Gently press the remover against your pet’s skin near the tick.
- Slide the notch of the remover under the tick, pulling it free.
Step 4: Cleanup and after-care
Drop the tick into isopropyl alcohol and note the date you found the tick. If your pet begins displaying symptoms of a tick-borne illness, your veterinarian may want to identify or test it. Some symptoms include arthritis or lameness that lasts for three to four days, reluctance to move, swollen joints, fever, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, loss of appetite and neurological problems.
Wash your hands, clean your pet’s wound with antiseptic and make sure to clean your tweezers with isopropyl alcohol.
Keep an eye on the area where the tick was to see if an infection surfaces. If the skin remains irritated or infected, make an appointment with your veterinarian.
Step 5: Prevent future bites
If you or your companion animals spend any time outdoors, you should routinely check for ticks. Ticks transfer between hosts, so it is important to check all family members after outdoor activities in wooded, leafy or grassy areas.
Comb your pet regularly with a flea comb, vacuum frequently and dispose of the bags immediately after use, mow areas of the lawn where your dog spends time, wash pet bedding weekly and wash your pet with a pesticide-free pet shampoo. In addition, to protect cats from fleas and ticks, as well as a host of other outdoor hazards, cats should be kept indoors at all times.
You can also ask your veterinarian about flea and tick preventatives.
Ticks are grey-brown egg-shaped, blood-sucking creepy crawlies.
They have eight legs, making them look spider-like, and vary in size from about 1mm to 1cm long. Ticks can look small at first and get bigger and darker as they fill with blood.
How do I know if my dog has a tick?
After feeding, ticks are big enough to spot and feel like a small bump on your pet’s skin. Run your hands over your dog’s body when you get back from a walk to check for them. They tend to attach themselves to areas around a dog’s head, neck, ears and feet.
Ticks don’t fly or jump, but climb or drop on to your dog’s coat when they brush past them.
How to remove a tick from a dog
Twisting them off your dog is the best removal method, and pet shops sell handy tick-removal devices to make this easier.
You need to be careful not to squeeze the tick’s body, or allow its head to get stuck inside your dog. Squeezing a tick’s body can cause it to expel blood back into your dog, increasing the risk of infection. Ask your vet for advice if you’re worried about doing this.
- Once you’ve located the tick, gently part your dog’s fur so that you can easily reach the tick
- Get your tick remover and slowly push it under the tick
- When you have a firm grasp of the tick, twist it in a clockwise direction several times until the tick comes loose
- Take a look at your dog’s skin and make sure the tick is completely removed
- Get rid of the tick by putting it in alcohol or popping it in tissue and flushing it down the toilet before washing your hands
Never use your fingers to crush a tick.
Ticks carry diseases, so it’s important to remove any that attach themselves to your dog as soon as possible.
How can I protect my dog from ticks?
If you live in an area with ticks, it’s a good idea to use a tick treatment that will either repel ticks or kill them quickly if they attach – the longer the tick is attached, the greater the risk of your dog catching a disease. Spot on treatments, tablets and collars are available and it’s best to consult your vet about which is most suitable for your pet.
Read tick treatment instructions very carefully if you have a cat. Some dog treatments can be lethal if used on cats.
Why should I protect my dog against ticks?
Ticks are very good at passing on infections from one animal to another. They feed by biting an animal and feasting on their blood. Once they have had enough, they drop off.
Ticks transmit microbes that cause diseases, such as lyme disease and babesiosis.
Lyme disease in dogs
Lyme disease is a serious bacterial infection. So, if you walk your dog in areas with deer or sheep make sure you keep a close eye on your dog. If your dog has lyme disease, you may notice:
- loss of appetite
- a fever
- swollen and painful joints
- swollen lymph nodes
These symptoms can be present in other conditions, so if you think your pet has lyme disease, contact your vet. They can perform tests to identify lyme disease and start treatment with antibiotics.
What is babesiosis?
Babesiosis is extremely rare in the UK and the tick that spreads it is currently only found in southern England and on the continent.
It takes around two weeks to show signs and symptoms of the disease, but some pets are not diagnosed for months or years after transmission.
If your dog is suffering from babesiosis you may notice:
- pale gums
- a swollen abdomen
- a fever
- loss of appetite
- they become depressed
- their skin becomes yellowish
If you spot any of these symptoms after walking your dog in a tick-infested area, contact your vet and make sure to tell them your dog may have been bitten by a tick. These symptoms can be caused by other conditions, but your vet will be able to identify the cause.
Where are ticks found?
Ticks are common in woodland, grassland and heath areas, but can also be found in your garden if you live in an area with lots of wildlife. You are most likely to come across them in areas with lots of deer or sheep between spring and autumn. But they are active throughout the year.
Tick prevention on holiday
If you’re planning on taking your dog abroad, be sure to speak with your vet before you go. Ticks in other countries can pass on different diseases and it’s important that your dog is protected against these.
How can I avoid being bitten by a tick?
Owners are more likely to be bitten by ticks if they walk their dogs in areas with a high tick population. Hikers and people who exercise in woodland and the countryside are at risk too.
Three ways to help avoid tick bites
- Wear long sleeved tops when out walking and either tuck trousers into socks, or wear long socks
- Check your clothes for ticks and brush them off quickly if you spot any
- Use an insect repellent
How can I remove a tick from my body?
Twisting them off your body is the best removal method. You can use a pair of tweezers or a tick removal tool. After you’ve removed the tick, give the bite area a good wash.
Ticks should be removed from your body as quickly as possible. Be very careful not to squeeze the tick’s body, or allow its head to get stuck inside your body. Squeezing a tick’s body increases the risk of infection.
Never try to burn off the tick or smother it with lotions, oils or moisturisers. This may cause the tick to expel some of the blood back into you, putting you at higher risk of infection.
If you develop a rash around the tick bite – these often look like red rings around the bite area – or feel unwell, contact your doctor and make sure to tell them you have been bitten by a tick. The earlier you seek treatment from your doctor, the better.
Can I catch a disease from a tick?
People can catch lyme disease from ticks, just like dogs.
Lyme disease is serious. So, if you walk your dog in areas with deer or sheep make sure you take precautions to avoid being bitten.
Symptoms of lyme disease include:
- a circular rash
- muscle and joint pain
Left untreated, the disease can develop into conditions such as:
- viral-like meningitis
- facial palsy
- nerve damage
Lyme disease can be treated with antibiotics if caught early enough, so inform your doctor if you have been bitten by a tick.
May 3 2021, Updated 4:25 p.m. ET
Ticks are nasty little arachnids that feed on the blood of other mammals. They climb into their fur and latch themselves onto their skin, often carrying Lyme disease and other pathogens that make them less-than-ideal travel companions for your family pup. Picking them off isn’t always easy, but once you know how to safely remove a tick from your dog, you’ll be able to do it swiftly, whenever you catch them hitching a ride.
Here’s how pet-owners should remove ticks from their dogs:
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the best way to remove a tick from a dog is to use a special pair of fine-tipped tweezers. Ticks are small — most are no bigger than the head of a pencil — so regular tweezers might be too blunt to properly get ahold of one. Fine point tweezers will also help you avoid accidentally tearing the tick in half.
Once you’ve secured special tweezers, spread your dog’s fur until you locate the offending arachnid. You may want to have someone else hold the dog before attempting this process as they might be tempted to move around during the process. Using the tweezers, carefully grasp the tick as close to the dog’s skin as you can. Steady your grip and slowly pull upward.
Make sure you’re gentle, and don’t squeeze too hard — you don’t want to break or rupture the tick. The tick’s mouthparts are likely still embedded in the dog’s skin at this point, so pulling too hard might cause the “head” to remain inside while the rest of the parasite is pulled away. Squeezing too hard can cause the tick to regurgitate infectious material back into the wound.
Once the tick is free, dispose of it and clean the bite area with rubbing alcohol. Remember to wash your hands and the tweezers. If you’d like to venture outside of tweezers, tick removal hooks like the Tick Twister are easy to master and highly effective at removing ticks. If you live in an area that is known for ticks, it might be a good investment. To use a tick hook, place the prongs on either side of the tick and just twist upward.
Why are ticks dangerous to dogs?
Ticks are considered hematophagous, which means they feed exclusively on the blood of other animals and need it to survive. Blood can carry all sorts of dangerous diseases and pathogens, which can transfer from host to host to feed. This is the same logic that makes mosquitoes the most dangerous animal in the world, according to the CDC. It also makes ticks particularly dangerous to any animal they happen to feed upon.
Like humans, according to Pets and Parasites, dogs are susceptible to Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis, and Anaplasmosis. Both Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever can cause arthritis, swelling of the joints, fever, and eventual lameness in dogs. The toxic saliva of some female ticks has also been known to cause a rare type of paralysis in dogs. If enough ticks feed on a dog’s blood, that dog can even develop anemia.
It’s never pleasant when we find creepy crawlies on our furry friends. From fleas and ticks to roundworms and tapeworms, dogs are prone to getting extra ‘passengers’ if they are not regularly treated with parasite control treatments. So, what if you spot a tick on your canine companion? What should you do?
What is a tick?
Ticks are a type of parasite which feed on blood. Adult ticks have four pairs of legs, and they vary drastically in appearance before and after a feed. Males are typically smaller than females and have a hard shell. This shell stops them from engorging as much as female ticks, who reach a substantial size after feeding. They are common in long grass, forest, or moorland areas and are most active in the Spring and Autumn months. If your dog is walked in areas where ticks are present, they will attach to your dog to feed. They remain attached for the duration of their feed, which could be days or over a week. Once they have fed, they often detach on their own to continue their life cycle in the environment.
Ticks can carry diseases that can be very serious. In addition, if your dog has a large number of ticks feeding on their blood, it could cause them to be anemic.
Can ticks make a dog unwell?
So, if ticks naturally fall off after feeding, you might wonder why they are a problem. However, ticks can carry diseases that can be very serious. In addition, if your dog has a large number of ticks feeding on their blood, it could cause them to be anemic.
The diseases that a tick might carry depend on the location. In the US, there is some variation between states since the climates vary so much. However, some of the most common tick-borne diseases are Lyme Disease , Babesiosis , Ehrlichiosis , and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever . The symptoms of these diseases can include fever, joint pain, bleeding, swollen lymph nodes, poor appetite, and anemia, and sadly they can be fatal.
As well as having the potential to make your pooch unwell, some tick-borne diseases also infect humans, making it even more important to take precautions.
How do you remove a tick from a dog?
If you spot a tick on your dog, you might want to consider removing it . However, it’s not always easy because ticks seem to find the most awkward areas to attach, like behind your dog’s ears, on their face, or in their armpits or groin. When removing a tick, it’s essential to remove the whole tick, but it’s easy to leave the tick’s head or mouthparts behind if your dog is wriggling. If the mouthparts remain embedded in your dog’s skin, an infection may develop.
The best way to remove a tick is with a tick fork. These two-pronged tick twisting devices allow the tick’s mouthparts to ‘unscrew’ so that the tick is removed as a whole. To use a tick fork, slide the fork under the tick so that the prongs are on either side of the tick’s attachment. Then, twist the device without pulling it until the tick comes away. You can then check the tick to see that it’s been fully removed.
If you don’t feel confident removing a tick yourself, then you should contact us. Our veterinary team will be able to remove the tick for you. If you like, they can demonstrate the technique so that you feel more confident to remove them in the future.
So, should I remove a tick from my dog, or should I call the vet?
If your canine companion has an unwanted visitor in the form of a tick, it can be hard to know what’s best to do. After all, you can attempt to remove the tick and home with a tick fork, but won’t it drop off eventually anyway? The most important thing if you notice a tick on your dog is to ensure it is removed or killed as soon as possible to reduce the risk of transfer of diseases. So, if you feel confident and your dog is well, with no symptoms of tick-borne diseases, you can try to remove the tick at home. However, if your dog seems unwell or if you are struggling to remove the whole tick, you should visit your veterinarian. They will be able to remove the tick or prescribe medication to kill it.
If your dog has had a tick or is walked in an area where ticks are abundant, it’s sensible to use a tick control treatment. If you speak to one of our vets, we can find the preventative medicine that suits your dog best. Then you can enjoy time outdoors with your dog without worrying about the risk of ticks.
You should contact the veterinary clinic if you try to remove a tick but leave the mouthparts behind or if the tick seems too embedded to remove with a tick fork. They can examine the area, if needed, and assess whether antibiotic or anti-inflammatory medication is required. You should never try to dig out the tick’s mouthparts from your dog’s skin. Your dog’s body will recognize the foreign material and will usually reject it over time. But, if not, your veterinarian will be able to help.
If your dog has a tick, it’s best not to try to put anything on the tick to kill it or encourage it to drop off. Many home remedies and theories exist, but applying anything hot or a potential toxin or irritant could harm your dog. In addition, stressing the tick may cause it to ‘vomit’, and increases the risk that the tick will pass on dangerous diseases. The safest way is to use a tick fork or see your veterinarian.
The best way to stop your dog from getting a tick is to use regular preventative medication. However, if your dog does have a tick, your veterinarian can prescribe medication, including a spot-on, a medicated collar, or a spray that will kill the tick and cause it to drop off in a day or two.
Ticked Off Yet?
Even if your dog tays close to home, ticks are canny creatures, and they have ways of making it into your home and onto your pets, even with preventions in place. All it takes is a few ticks to get established in an area to set up a full-scale infestation of your yard, your dog, and your home. Here are five common ways your dog gets ticks.
Image: Makarova Viktoria / Shutterstock
#5 Other Animals
No yard is an island unto itself, and squirrels, raccoons, feral cats, and other small rodents will find ways to get into your yard, carrying ticks along with them. This is one reason not to encourage wild animals to come into your dog’s domain by leaving out offerings such as corn, nuts, and seeds. Even a bowl of water, left out for when your dog is outside, is an invitation for other animals to hang about.
Image: Denise Kappa / Shutterstock
#4 Human Transportation
You and your human visitors can also be unwitting carriers of ticks. They can be brought in from the person’s own home or pet without their knowledge. If you like to spend time hiking in areas where ticks are prevalent, it’s easy for a few to hitch a ride on your pants leg, socks, shoes, etc.
Image: Kapu / Shutterstock
#3 The Great Outdoors
Anytime your dog goes out into the world — even if only for short walks around the block; play dates at the local dog park; a visit to the veterinarian; a stint at the boarding kennel; a trip to the groomer; a ride in the car; etc. — he/she is being exposed to the opportunity for fleas and ticks to hop aboard.
Image: Raywoo / Shutterstock
#2 Poor Landscaping
For the outside, there are some plants that are known for their tick repelling characteristics, and it is worth it to try anti-pest landscaping. However, it is often easier and more effective to use chemical pesticides and repellants for yard and perimeter treatment, especially when dealing with a tick infestation that is already in full progress.
External parasites are a problem for you and your dog. There are several products available to eliminate them, but you can also choose to use home remedies if you detect any in your dog.
Because most home remedies are made from natural products, they are not toxic to your dog and are friendly to the environment.
Symptoms of Ticks on Dogs
Before presenting you with the best natural remedies, you need to know the symptoms of ticks in dogs. Ticks live in damp and dark areas, and your day may come in contact with a nest without knowing. Ticks are small and can go unnoticed if your dog has long hair.
They usually cling to the skin, begin to feed on the dog’s blood, and reproduce quickly. Some of them can transmit dangerous diseases, but all tick infestations cause the following symptoms:
- Skin rash
- Intense itching
- Skin wounds, caused by dog scratching
- Frequent scratching
- Fatigue and weakness
How To Remove Ticks From Your Dog
There are different medications to eliminate ticks on your dogs, but it may be easier to use pipettes, necklaces, shampoos, and antiparasitic sprays.
Never ignore a tick infestation. If the problem spreads, it could kill your dog. Before you apply any treatment, try to remove as many of the ticks as you can, including the jaw, with tweezers and kill them.
It is best to use these natural remedies in conjunction with commercial products, always under your veterinarian’s supervision.
Home Remedies To Eliminate Ticks in Dogs
Chamomile is effective because of the smell it gives off. Prepare an infusion using two commercial bags of chamomile tea or a handful of dried natural leaves. When the water has an intense smell, wait for it to cool and bathe your dog with the infusion.
To make it more potent, you can add a slice of lemon to the water during preparation. In addition to preventing ticks from feeding off your dog, chamomile will soothe their irritated skin.
Vinegar has multiple uses at home. Among them is as a repellent against ticks. Depending on the size of your dog, mix equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water.
Then, rub the fur with a cloth, avoiding the dog’s eyes, ears, and nose. Your dog may show displeasure at first due to the smell, but it will pass after a while.
A bath in eucalyptus infusion is as effective as chamomile. Prepare the water by infusing commercial tea or natural eucalyptus leaves. Let the solution cool, bathe your dog with it, or spread it on its fur with a soft cloth.
Neem oil is an effective repellent against ticks and fleas. For this reason, it will help you prevent them from harboring your dog. In a bowl of water, mix 5 drops of neem oil with 5 drops of citronella oil.
Then, use the mixture to spray your dog’s coat. The smell gets rid of the ticks, but it won’t be annoying for family members.
Citrus fruits are among the natural remedies to remove ticks more effectively. Choose some slices of lemon or orange and place them in a bowl of water. Boil the solution for about an hour, then remove the slices of fruit, wait for the water to cool, and use a bottle to spray your dog with it.
Avoid sensitive areas, such as eyes, nose, and snout. Citrus fruits work well as a tick repellent; you can use this same remedy to spray your dog’s belongings and areas of the house where your dog may have been.
Essential oils also constitute an effective repellent against ticks. In a sprayer with two liters of water, place five drops of peppermint oil, cinnamon, lavender, and almonds. Shake it well and spray on your dog’s fur.
Preventative Measures That Can Stop The Ticks From Getting in Your House
In addition to applying natural repellents on your dog to fight against the ticks, it’s essential to use treatments throughout the house as well.
- Vacuum all spaces in your home, emphasizing cleaning in corners, behind furniture, curtains, sofas, and cushions. Discard the garbage from the vacuum carefully, after you’re done.
- Wash all of your textile garments, such as covers, pillows, and sheets, with hot water. For carpets, curtains, and beds, you can use a vaporizer.
- Wash your pet’s bed and toys with hot water and lemon.
- Use lemon, mint, and peppermint solutions, boiled with water, to clean floors, countertops, and spray windows.
- Apply remedies made with water and essential oils on the rugs and carpets.
- Maintain a strict cleaning of your home for a few weeks.
These home remedies are more powerful if you apply more than one of them at the same time. If you have a tick infestation out of your control, you should immediately call your veterinarian and a pest control professional.
By Nicole Cosgrove
Updated on Jun 1, 2022
When you find a tick on your dog, it’s important to remove it as quickly as possible. Ticks can carry various diseases. The longer that an infected tick is attached to your dog, the more time the insect has to transmit these diseases.
Tick removal can be tricky. The best thing to do would be to take your dog to the vet for proper removal, but this isn’t always possible. Fortunately, you can remove any ticks that you find on your dog using dish soap and a few other household items.
Ticks must be removed completely and thoroughly, with none of its body parts left embedded in your dog’s skin. If the tick vomits or gets ripped in half, its contents can then leak into the bite wounds that it left behind in the skin, potentially causing illness.
In this article, we look at how you can remove a tick from your dog using dish soap and what to do afterward.
Identifying a Tick
Image Credit: Koy_Hipster, Shutterstock
To positively identify a tick, you have to know what you’re looking for. Many people realize that their dog has ticks when they feel hard, tiny lumps under their coats.
Ticks are arachnids with eight legs (tick larvae have six) and oval-shaped bodies. They can resemble warts on a dog’s skin at first, but you’ll see the legs if you look closer. Depending on the type of tick, colors can vary between tan, brown, and black. As the insects feed on blood, their bodies swell up and resemble coffee beans.
Ticks can bite and spread diseases to humans too. If you’ve spotted ticks on your dog, check yourself thoroughly to make sure they aren’t also attached to you.
Ticks like to hide in these areas on dogs, so pay close attention to them during your checks:
Under the collar and around the neck
Before You Start
Image Credit: Fire-n, Shutterstock
If your dog often gets ticks or you just want to be ready in case you happen to find one, you’ll need to have your supplies ready, since immediate tick removal is important. Storing them in one area that you can easily access when you need to will save you time.
Before you start the removal process, gather your supplies and set them up around you within reach.
Another person to help hold your dog still if necessary
Removing the Tick
- If you’re using gloves, put them on. Fill your plastic or glass container with warm water, and add 3 tablespoons of dish soap to it. Cover the container with the lid and shake well. Remove the lid.
- Soak a cotton ball in soapy water until it’s fully saturated.
- Cover the tick with the cotton ball, and hold it firmly in place for 30 seconds. This should make the tick start to loosen its grip. It can take up to 3 minutes for the tick to start to loosen, so keep holding it until you feel it happen. Don’t pull, rub, or try to grab the tick through the cotton ball.
- Once the tick releases its grip, you can pull it straight up off your dog’s skin. The tick may even get trapped in the cotton ball, making this easier for you. Make sure the tick is entirely removed from the skin with no parts left behind, like their pincers or head.
- Take your tweezers, and remove the tick from the cotton ball. Drop it in the bowl of rubbing alcohol to kill it. You may want to keep the tick in case your dog becomes ill. Your vet can determine the best course of treatment by identifying what type of tick was attached to them.
- Apply antiseptic to the affected area to kill any germs left behind. Pat the area dry.
After Removing the Tick
Image Credit: Vikulin, Shutterstock
Be sure to check your dog’s body thoroughly for any ticks that may remain. Repeat the removal process for any others that you find.
Once you’re sure there are no ticks left on your dog and the ones that have been removed have not left body parts behind in the skin, it’s important to watch for signs of tick-borne illnesses. Symptoms include:
If you notice any of these signs in your dog, let your vet know what’s going on. If you bring your dog in for treatment, bring the removed tick or ticks with you for identification purposes. Treatment can be determined more easily once the vet knows what type of tick caused the issue.
How to Prevent Ticks
Tick-prevention products are effective at keeping your dog safe from ticks and other parasites. Talk to your vet about which tick prevention would be right for your dog and how you should administer it. Some of these products are eaten as a chew or tablet, and others are applied as a liquid directly to the skin. Your vet will know which one would be best based on your dog’s age, weight, health, and lifestyle.
If your dog spends plenty of time outdoors, especially in tall grass, woods, or forests, they should have some sort of protection against ticks. By keeping these parasites off of them, you will keep your dog healthy and happy. You will also save yourself the unpleasant job of having to search for and remove ticks from their bodies.
Finding a tick on your dog is never a fun experience. The good news is that you can remove ticks yourself at home if you have the right supplies. Dish soap and water can help loosen ticks so you can pull them out of your dog’s skin.
Once the tick is removed, watch for signs of illness in your dog. If you visit your vet, bring the tick with you so they know what type it is. Talk to your vet about monthly tick prevention to keep your dog safe from these critters.
Featured Image Credit: Jim Barber, Shutterstock
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Babesiosis, Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, hepatozoonosis, rocky mountain fever… these are some of the unpleasant illnesses transmitted by ticks. If left untreated, tick-borne diseases can become fatal.
So, how can you protect your canine friend from these ugly and dangerous creatures?
Well, for starters, use safe tick-prevention strategies to repel ticks from your dog’s body. These include the use of apple cider vinegar and garlic, which can be included in his diet to make his blood less appealing to ticks.
You can also buy a good tick repellent and spray his body with it.
Unfortunately, some of the remedies don’t offer 100% protection for your dog. In this case, you will need to learn how to safely remove ticks from your dog as soon as you see them.
There are a number of ways to do this but let’s focus on removing ticks using Vaseline.
What You’ll Need
- A tick removal tool or pointed tweezers
CDC recommends using fine-tipped tweezers or tick removal tools that can allow you to grasp the ticks as close to your dog’s skin as possible.
Check this post for the best tools: 12 Best Tick Removal Tools for Dogs
- Latex gloves
Steps to Follow
Put on your latex gloves. Although rare, some tick infestations can be transmitted to humans. For instance, in case of a scratch, you could become infected.
Look for all the ticks embedded in your dog’s skin. This is a bit straightforward because the bite area will appear swollen.
Check everywhere including the ears.
Ticks are very small and can hide practically everywhere. This is especially true if you have a thick-haired mutt such as a Yorkie, Lhasa Apso, Afghan Hound, or Shih Tzu.
Apply a generous amount of Vaseline on the tick.
The idea here is to make the tick back out or remove its grip from your dog’s skin. This way, the removal becomes easy.
Once the tick is suffocated, use the tick removal tool or tweezers to pull it off. This step is quite tricky because if you are not careful, you can rip the tick and pour its fluids right into your dog’s bloodstream.
For the best results, grasp the tick at the specific point where it meets the dog’s skin (see the image below). Don’t go for the body as it could squish and pour toxins into the dog.
If you grip too high, you will likely leave the tick’s mouthparts in the skin. These can develop into a tick granuloma that will need antibiotics or surgery to get rid of.
After grasping the tick, pull it backward slowly. Don’t attempt to twist it in a clockwise or anti-clockwise motion as this might squash the tick as well.
Once the entire tick is out, apply some Vaseline to suffocate it some more.
Clean the affected area with soap and water then wash your hands as thoroughly as possible.
If possible, disinfect the area with an antibiotic ointment like Polysporin, povidine iodine solution or chlorhexidine.
Although no prescription is required to get the ointments, remember to dilute them to lower their concentration.
You will always find dilution instructions on their labels.
Alternatively, consult your vet for more professional input.
Generally, suffocating tick with Vaseline is not highly recommended because it is not very effective.
It can actually induce the tick to regurgitate or drool into your dog’s skin or bloodstream, causing infections/diseases.
Covering the tick with Vaseline may also cause the tick to be more slippery and difficult to grasp.
A good ‘home remedy’ alternative is to use alcohol. Check this post for more insights: How to Remove Tick from a Dog with Alcohol
1. Feel Free To Use Tick Removal Tool Alternatives
If you don’t have a tick removal tool, go ahead and use a credit card, butter knife, or guitar pick to push the tick around until it backs out.
This needs to be done carefully and gently to avoid upsetting the tick in the first place.
The goal is to keep the tick happy for as long as possible so that it doesn’t spit its toxins on your furry friend.
2. Don’t Kill the Tick Right Away
If you care to know if the tick carries disease, don’t kill it right away.
Keep it in a sealed container alongside a piece of grass and send it to your vet for testing.
3. If the Tick’s Mouthparts Are Left Behind…
What many people perceive to be the tick’s “head” is actually not the head but mouthparts or tick jaws (to be precise). The mouthparts carry harpoon-like barbs that attach to its host, allowing it to feed.
If you have a botched job (i.e if the tick’s mouthparts are left behind), attempt to remove them with clean tweezers, but if they can’t come out easily, don’t fret; just leave it and allow your dog’s skin to heal.
According to the CDC, they are not as infectious as an actual tick.
Over time, your pooch’s body will reject and eliminate them.
Nevertheless, keep a close eye on the bite area for a week or so.
Watch out for things like a rash, redness, and swelling as these could indicate an infection.
4. Strive to Remove the Tick Safely
Finally, don’t resort to removing the tick by using dangerous means such as burning it with a cigarette, attaching cotton on it and pulling, and using your fingernails to pick it.
All these only distress the tick and can cause serious consequences.
Ticks may be small and seemingly innocent but they carry deadly diseases that can be fatal to dogs.
Therefore, it makes sense to do all you can to safely remove a tick from your dog before it does harm to its host.
The more you wait to remove it from your dog, the higher the chance of disease transmission.
Don’t take any chances. Use prevention strategies to keep them off your dog’s skin.
In addition, check your pet as often as you can and store the necessary tools to deal with these critters right away.
Other Tick Control Guides
Curious about other tick control measures and tools? Feel free to check other our comprehensive guides to help you deal with these pesky critters:
This article was co-authored by Beverly Ulbrich. Beverly Ulbrich is a Dog Behaviorist and Trainer and the Founder of The Pooch Coach, a private dog training business based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is a Certified CGC (Canine Good Citizen) Evaluator by the American Kennel Club and has served on the Board of Directors for the American Humane Association and Rocket Dog Rescue. She has been voted the best private dog trainer in the San Francisco Bay Area 4 times by SF Chronicle and by Bay Woof, and she has won 4 “Top Dog Blog” awards. She has also been featured on TV as a dog behavior expert. Beverly has over 18 years of dog behavior training experience and specializes in dog aggression and anxiety training. She has a Master of Business Administration from Santa Clara University and a BS from Rutgers University.
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Ticks can be a pretty frequent problem if you have dogs. They can cause serious diseases like ehrlichiosis, anaplasmosis, and babesiosis, as well as Lyme’s disease, which can affect humans, too. Providing your dogs with regular care and maintaining the cleanliness of your home’s indoor and outdoor spaces can help prevent your dogs from getting ticks. You can also give your dogs a variety of preventative medicines that both repel and kill ticks. If you do find ticks on your dogs, there are things you can do to prevent the infestation from getting worse. Most tick borne diseases take more than 24 hours continuous tick attachment to be transmitted. Therefore, checking your dogs for ticks daily and removing them right away can help to prevent disease.
Ticks, those small, oval or round, eight-legged blood-feeders, are bothersome to both humans and animals alike. At best, a bite can be irritating, at worst it can endanger you or your pet’s health, causing tick-borne illnesses like Lyme disease. In fact, just reading this is probably giving you the sensation that something is crawling on you. But knowing how to find, remove, and prevent ticks on your dog is an important part of taking good care of your pet.
How Do Dogs Get Ticks?
Ticks are opportunistic parasites. They hang out on the tips of blades of grass or on the outer leaves of bushes and shrubs and wait for an animal to pass by. When your dog brushes up against the foliage where the tick is waiting, the tick makes his move, crawling onto your pet and eventually implanting his mouth parts into your dog’s skin.
There are different types of ticks that are prevalent in various regions of the United States and Canada. And while ticks themselves are gross, they are not, by themselves, dangerous. However, ticks are carriers of serious diseases like Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Consult your veterinarian to understand which ticks and what diseases are common in your area.
The good news: If your dog is infected, he cannot pass the disease along to you. You can, however, be infected by a tick bite. So if your dog is infected, and you’ve been in the same place as him, you may have been bitten as well.
How Can You Tell if Your Dog Has Ticks?
If you find an unattached tick crawling on your floor or furniture or even (eek!) on yourself, “pick it up using a tissue and kill it or flush it,” says Anne Conover, DVM, the owner of Rolling Hills Veterinary Clinic, a mixed animal practice in Madison County, Iowa. Then, check your dog for attached pests by petting him and feeling for small bumps. If you feel something, part the fur so you can see the skin.
Your dog’s behavior may give you clues to where there may be attached ticks. The pests are especially attracted to the warm, moist environment of your dog’s ears, so excessive head-shaking might be a clue. “He may lick, scratch, or bite at the area where the tick is crawling or attached,” Conover says. Another clue may be unexplained scabs. If your dog has removed a tick with his scratching and licking, a scab may form where the skin is irritated from the tick’s bite.
How Are Ticks Treated?
The first priority in treating a tick bite is to remove the attached tick. This is not as scary as you might think. Here’s more good news: Ticks crawl. They do not jump or fly. So you don’t have to worry about the tick escaping or getting lost once you remove it—just be sure you have your supplies ready before you begin the removal process.
The best way to remove a tick is with tweezers or a specific tick-removal tool. Wear disposable gloves or protect your hands with a tissue or paper towel. Part your dog’s fur and, using the tweezers, grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible. Do not twist; simply pull straight up with a constant steady pressure. Be patient, the tick may not release immediately.
Once removed, drop the tick in a jar with a bit of rubbing alcohol to kill it, then keep the tick in a container or a plastic bag labeled with the date, place, and other details. If your dog later starts to exhibit unusual symptoms, your vet can help identify the type of tick and the label information will be helpful.
After removal, disinfect the bite area on the dog’s skin and wash your hands thoroughly. “If the area where the tick is or was attached is inflamed or swollen, or if a tick is burrowed deeply into the skin, a veterinarian should examine the dog,” Conover says. “If there are abundant ticks on your dog, you should consult your veterinary care team for tick prevention methods that work best in your area.”
Prevention is Possible! Here’s How
“The best way to keep ticks away is to use a monthly preventative,” Conover says. “The most effective brands typically are those sold by a veterinarian.” Whether you choose an oral medication that your dog enjoys as a tasty treat or a topical treatment, a liquid that you apply to the skin between his shoulder blades, you still should do due diligence in keeping your pup tick-free. “It is still recommended to check your dog for ticks after an outing, and to remove any ticks you find as soon as possible,” Conover says.
Use Vinegar to Kill and Prevent Ticks on Dogs
The Daily Puppy (website) offers pet lovers 3 ways to use vinegar to kill ticks: spraying a solution of vinegar and water directly on your dog; put straight vinegar on the tick or put vinegar in your dog’s drinking water. The tips are noted below:
- A homemade spray solution of one part vinegar and one part water helps keep ticks and fleas away from your pets. Pour the solution in a spray bottle and spray directly onto your pets, but be careful not to get it in their eyes.
- If, after inspecting yourself and your pet for ticks, you find a tick, rub distilled vinegar directly onto the tick with a cotton bud or cotton ball — or pour over the site — until the tick lets go. After the tick releases its hold, pull it out with tweezers and dunk it in a cup of vinegar until it has drowned, then dispose of it.
- After you have gotten rid of your pet’s ticks, the Vinegar Institute recommends adding a teaspoon of white distilled or apple cider vinegar to a quart of your pet’s drinking water — this is for a 40 pound animal, so adjust accordingly. Consuming the vinegar will change your pet’s scent and, if your pet will drink it, will help prevent and kill future ticks and pesky fleas.
August 2, 2019
Meet the Association
The Vinegar Institute is an international trade association representing the vast majority of vinegar manufacturers and bottlers. Companies manufacturing and/or bottling vinegar qualify for active membership in The Institute, and suppliers of goods or services to the vinegar industry are eligible for associate membership.
Even with the careful removal of a tick, it is very common for a mouth part (or even entire head) to remain when a tick is extracted.
While we want to avoid having the tick’s mouth left in the skin, it is sometimes unavoidable. When the mouth is left in, it’s hardly the end of the world. The potential for disease transmission at this point is minimal. The body will wall off the foreign material and, in a few days, it will dissolve. The only other problem that might occur is the foreign body reaction that could also occur from a thorn or splinter. Although the embedded head does not always increase risk of infections, one must treat it in the same way, as one would a splinter.
What not to do if a tick’s head gets stuck in your dog
Perhaps just as important as what to do if a tick’s head gets stuck in your dog is what not to do. This advice is very similar to what may be recommended for people, according to tickbites.net. Never dig around in the skin to remove the remainder of the tick, as this can actually increase the risk of skin infections. Instead, it’s best to let nature take its course. Your dog’s body will expel the tick out naturally by itself.
How to prevent infection
To avoid the possibility of infection, apply an antibiotic ointment, as directed.
How will I know if there’s a problem?
Remember to watch the area for the development of a rash or irritation and be sure to see your veterinarian right away if a rash develops at the site.
If you’re concerned about the possibility of tick-borne disease, follow these links to learn more about the symptoms of:
Preventing future ticks
If you’ve just pulled a tick off of your dog, you might be wondering how you can avoid it in the future. While nothing can be 100% effective, The Companion Animal Parasite Council says, the most important thing to do to prevent ticks is to use a combination flea and tick control agent, according to your veterinarian’s instructions, all year round.
If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian — they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.
We know. Removing a tick from your dog is something every owner dreads. While it’s not pleasant, it’s important to do it quickly and correctly in order to keep your dog safe. If your pup spends a lot of time outside, removing ticks might just become part of your daily routine. In many areas of the US, ticks are active year-round.
Why do I need to remove it?
It’s tempting to just let a tick run its course. How bad can it really be, right?
The answer is, pretty bad! Ticks can carry infectious organisms that infect animals and people with illnesses such as Lyme diseases, ehrlichiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever to name a few. This can occur as fast as three to six hours after a bite, so it is imperative that you remove a tick as soon as you possibly can to avoid your dog getting sick.
How do I know it’s a tick?
The United States has roughly 200 different tick species that can survive in tons of different locations including woods, lawns, forests, beaches, and even urban areas. Tick-borne diseases are found in all 50 states. They range in size from about the size of a pinhead to the size of a human fingertip.
In general, ticks are small and have a round body shape. They can be black, brown, tan, or grey in color. They are arachnids, meaning they have eight legs (except for one species that has six) and may closely resemble a spider.
It’s important to check your dog for ticks regularly, especially if you are in an area known for having a high concentration of them. They are not always easy to see, so conducting regular checks is the best way to avoid an infection. To conduct a check, run your hands over your dog’s body and feel for any small bumps on the skin. When a tick begins to feed, they will fill with blood (gross, we know!) and feel like a bump when you groom your pet. Pay particular attention to the areas around your pup’s head, legs and paws, groin, and armpits.
How to remove a tick
Now for the removal process. To conduct a safe removal, you will need:
- Clean, fine-point tweezers
- Disinfectant or antiseptic cream
- Isopropyl alcohol
- Optional: Magnifying glass
Step 1: Ready your ingredients. Put your gloves on, get your clean tweezers out, and have your isopropyl alcohol ready to go in a glass or small container (the tick will be going in there). The gloves are an extremely important step because they will prevent ticks from making contact with your skin. Ticks can transfer between hosts, and we don’t want that next host to be you!
Step 2: Make sure your dog is comfortable. You don’t want him or her to run away or move abruptly while you are removing the tick. Try to keep your dog calm and have him or her sit down, if possible. A treat or two may prove to be a helpful distraction!
Step 3: Use your tweezers to remove the tick. If the tick is very small, use a magnifying glass to help you with the removal process. Spread your dog’s fur, then grasp the tick with the tweezers as close to your dog’s skin as possible without pinching your pet. Gently, pull the tick out in a slow, steady, and upward motion. The goal is to pull the head of the tick out of your dog’s skin while it is still attached to its body. Scan the area to make sure there is nothing left behind, as this could lead to an infection. If the head of the tick is still embedded in your dog’s skin after the body has been removed, don’t panic! Do not attempt to remove the head yourself as you might cause more irritation and inflammation that can increase the risk of infection. Instead, contact your veterinarian to remove any remaining pieces of the tick.
Step 4: Cleanup. Drop the tick into your isopropyl alcohol and clean your pet’s wound with the antiseptic. Many veterinarians recommend keeping the tick in the container in case your dog begins to feel sick, so that they can identify what kind of tick bit your pup. Different kinds of ticks can carry different diseases, so being able to identify the tick may help with a diagnosis. Lastly, make sure to clean your tweezers with the isopropyl alcohol and wash your hands!
Step 5: Monitoring. Take note of the date you found the tick. Make sure to keep an eye on your pup over the next few days to make sure they aren’t exhibiting symptoms of a tick-borne illness. Some symptoms to watch out for are arthritis that lasts for a few days, swollen joints, fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, reluctance to move, swollen lymph nodes, and neurological problems. If you notice any of these symptoms in your pet, consult your veterinarian and let them know the date that you found the tick.
Preventing future bites
The best way to avoid future bites is to keep your dog away from areas that may have a high concentration of them. We know in many cases this might be almost impossible, because ticks can thrive in a lot of different climates and areas. The next best option is to check for ticks, comb your dog with a flea comb, vacuum, mow areas of the lawn where your dog spends time, and wash pet bedding regularly!
There are also effective oral prescription products on the market that will provide protection against fleas and ticks. Ask your vet to find the right prescription for you.
Remember that ticks can transfer between hosts. You should check all members of your family for ticks after outdoor activities, especially if you have recently found a tick on your dog.
Keep your dog happy and healthy
Spot Pet Insurance is here to help support your pet’s health. Check out the accident & illness and accident-only pet insurance plans that we offer. We also offer a preventative care coverage add-on option for an extra cost.
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When a tick is seen on the coat of a dog, it is normally associated with swelling too. It can be pulled.
Cleaning & Laundry
Try clear, cold water first then detergents,cautiously apply a solution of ammonia and cold water and.
Bring dog to vet now. He may have contracted lyme disease and vet can draw his blood and check to see.
Try what is called oops it should take the unwanted paint off.yes you can by it at either place but usually.
The dog will scratch like mad and if you comb through the fur you can spot them lurking.
Yes, do not pull the body out, because the head is the only thing harming it. If you’ve already pulled.
Izzo, Dogs, like people, do have a clear covering over the eyeball. If this mucus you mentioned is.
Slap some ice on it.
Cleaning & Laundry
You can use this trick anytime you need to remove wax. If you have an iron (the kind.
Whats the difference between ‘sea ticks’ and normal ticks? I just pick the ticks off my dog by hand.
When you own a dog, you will be no stranger to fleas and ticks.
Ticks and fleas will suck the blood from the dog’s body which will lead to several health issues.
Since dogs are warm-blooded animals, they naturally attract fleas and ticks and hence the need to prevent or get rid of these parasites from attacking your pet as the case may be.
The only option to get rid of these ticks and fleas is to clean your dog frequently. Along with this, the use of essential oil therapy will also help a lot.
Several essential oils can be used as a natural repellent for fleas and ticks in the house.
From peppermint oil, oregano oil, tea tree to lavender oil.
They’re also effective in getting rid of these ectoparasites on dogs and cats and are used in aromatherapy blends and as a homemade spray for ticks and fleas.
Lavender oil for example is analgesic, carminative, antidepressive, antiseptic, and has anti-inflammatory properties, antihistamine, and antifungal properties.
Lavender oil is not only preventing ticks and fleas on dogs, but it can also be used against other health issues with dogs.
- Lavender oil is used in treating dog separation anxiety, calming puppies, and hyper dogs.
- This essential oil can be used to shrink tumors in dogs.
- It can also be used for dog itchy skin pain, hot spots, and wounds
Lavender oil can be used for dogs in the following ways
The lavender essential oil in Dog’s Bedding
To help prevent ticks and fleas from your dog’s bedding, dip a cloth or cotton in lavender oil and place it on the bed.
When there is an aroma of lavender in the bed, ticks and fleas will not dare to step in.
Since this oil is natural, it will not cause any kind of irritation to the pet too. This can also be used in the same way for cats.
Lavender essential oil on Dog’s Skin
You can mix a few drops of high-quality lavender oil (usually between 5 to 10 drops) with the usual coconut oil, tree tea oil, peppermint oil, or oregano oil and water.
You can also mix the essential oil with apple cider vinegar, salt, baking soda, and water for the dog’s fur.
Kindly make sure the essential oil and other ingredients are well diffused into the water.
One area of concern here is the concentration and dilution of the oil.
Vets have given warnings severally that when the essential oil is not diluted well, or it’s poisonous, it can cause allergies and burns.
And if swallowed, it may have negative effects and a veterinary doctors should be consulted afterward.
Before brushing the dog’s fur, simply dip the comb in this mixed oil and give a nice long brush throughout your dog’s body.
This will not only keep the ticks and fleas away but will also make your dog’s hair shiny and smooth.
Alternatively, lavender oil can also be added to the water during the dog’s bath time and can be used with other essential oils.
It can also be used to prevent dogs from licking their legs, paws or other parts since it tastes bad and is not harmful when licked.
They would not want to lick it when rubbed on their skin because of the bad aroma and taste.
Bathing your dog with homemade dog shampoo made with lavender oil can also help treat yeast infection on the dog’s paws, ears skin, and belly without hydrogen peroxide.
Lavender for Natural Antibacterial Spray
Lavender oil can be used as a natural repellent and homemade spray.
Just take a spray bottle and fill it up with the lavender oil along with other essential oil or water.
Before using the spray, shake the bottle well. Now, gently spray this solution in your dog’s body, especially the legs.
Avoid using the spray on the face to avoid touching the eyes and the nose.
Make sure the spray is applied properly on the dog’s collar since ticks and fleas love to hide there because the dog won’t be able to bite them off.
If the dog struggles with you and it’s difficult to do, then a wet cloth filled with the spray can be used to clean the neck region.
The spray can also be used in the areas where the dog spends most of the time.
It can be sprayed on the dog’s bed, carpet, play area, etc to avoid ticks and fleas.
Lavender Oil for Natural Dog’s Shampoo
As mentioned earlier, the lavender essential oil can be used in bathwater.
You can fill the bathtub with plain water. Now add some sea salt and a few drops of lavender oil.
Let your dog relax in the water for a few minutes. This will allow the mixture to get soaked into your dog’s hair and body.
Now give a normal bath and make sure all the salt is removed from the body.
This will help in getting rid of fleas and tick build-up.
This can also help when your dog is having a skunk odor.
The lavender oil can be mixed with water as a homemade spray for dog odor elimination, especially for a female dogs on heat.
Planting Lavender in your Surroundings
To ensure the fleas and ticks are not caught in the surrounding, you can try growing lavender plants around the house.
The areas where your dog spends more time, say the play area, can be covered with lavender plants.
Your dog will tend to rub it while playing, which will keep the aroma fresh in the body.
By growing these plants in the nearby environment, the infestation of ticks and fleas can be easily prevented.
When will this work?
By following the above-mentioned methods, the parasite infestations can be eliminated in a fortnight.
If the infestation reduces, do not stop the process. By continuing with the said methods, future infestations of fleas and ticks can be avoided.
While using the lavender essential oil, make sure it’s not swallowed. If your dog tends to lick its body often then minimize the amount of oil used.
Never use a concentrated solution.
Always mix it up and dilute it.
Since there are all kinds of lavender oils available in the market, make sure to choose the natural ones which are free from artificial ingredients.
Following the said methods, will clean up all the fleas and ticks on your pet and would help cure other diseases.
You give your dog an affectionate ruffle bend their ears when – uh oh – what’s that?
If you feel a smooth hard bump, your pet could have picked up a tick.
These bloodsucking parasites are every squeamish pet owner’s worst nightmare. They bury their jaws in your dog or cat’s skin and glue themselves there while they suck your pets blood and swell up to over a centimetre long.
If you find a tick on your dog, don’t panic. Get your gag reflex in check, collect some supplies and we’ll show you how to safely remove the little eight-legged vampire.
A Regular policy with £7,000 of vet fee cover and a no excess option for pets under nine.
What you’ll need.
First, get together everything you need to remove that tick.
Latex or nitrile gloves
Fine-point tweezers or a tick-remover tool
A small container with a lid
Make sure you have all these items nearby and put the gloves on.
How to remove a tick from your pet
Pour rubbing alcohol into the small container – you’ll need this when the tick is out.
Hold your pet and try to keep them calm by talking to and stroking them. You might need to ask someone to give you a hand so they can hold your pet still while you’re extracting the tick.
Part your pet’s fur so you can see the tick clearly.
Put the jaws of the tweezers around the tick, as close to your pet’s skin as you can. They will be around the tick’s head and mouth area. Pull the tick with the tweezers using a gentle, smooth motion. Be careful not to tug or jerk the tweezers. That could break the tick’s body off, leaving the head in your pet’s skin. Apply just enough pressure to get a good enough grip to pull it out intact.
If you’re using a tick-remover tool, follow the instructions that come with it. The type of motion you use to pull on the tick may differ depending on the tool.
Once the tick is out, look at it to check its in one piece. You should see it still moving its legs or jaws – that means you’ve got it out in one go and haven’t left any bits of tick in your cat or dog.
This bit’s important – place the tick in the container with the rubbing alcohol to kill it. A live detached tick could latch back on to your pet if you drop it and lose it, or even on to you!
Clean the affected area of your pet’s skin with rubbing alcohol.
Tick-removal – what not to do
Petroleum jelly, burning, freezing or resorting to any other method to kill the tick while it’s still in your pet’s skin is a bad idea.
Even if you manage to kill it, the head could remain in your cat or dog’s skin and make them ill.
Holding a flame near the body of the tick can be dangerous and severely injure your pet or burn its fur.
If you need help removing ticks, take your pet to your vet, who can also prescribe or recommend a preventative spray or spot-on to help avoid future bites.
How to check your pet for ticks
Run your hands across your pet’s body and inspect any skin bumps you feel to make sure they are not ticks.
They often attach themselves to the face, neck, ears and underbelly areas.
Tick, nipple or skin tag?
It can be surprisingly hard to tell the difference between a tick, nipple and skin tag on your cat or dog.
If you’re in any doubt that what you can feel is a tick, put the tweezers down and speak to a vet first.
We promise they won’t laugh – veterinary surgeon Dr Kirsten Ronngren gets asked this on a pretty regular basis.
“Usually skin tags and nipples are going to be the same or similar colour to the skin itself, whereas ticks will usually be a brown colour. They may change colour a bit depending on how old the tick is and if its already attached and trying to feed (i.e. filling up with blood).
“A majority of the time if you really look hard enough, you can see that ticks do have eight little legs. You can use a magnifying glass or zoom in with your phone that can help!”
You get free video vet calls to a qualified vet at any time of day or night with your ManyPets pet insurance policy. They’ll be happy to take a look and reassure you that what you’re looking at is, in fact, a tick.
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No matter how careful you might be, chances are your dog will pick up a tick if they spend any time outside. Ticks are stubborn parasites commonly found in long grass and woodland areas. They latch on as your dog passes by, and once they’ve attached, they can be difficult to remove.
Though ticks will drop off your dog after they’ve finished feeding, this process can take days, during which time the tick can transmit diseases — including Lyme disease — to your pet that can cause serious health problems. The longer they stay attached, the greater the risk of infection. That’s why it’s important to remove a tick as soon as you see one on your dog. Here’s how to do it safely.
How to Remove a Tick from a Dog in 8 Steps
1. Gather Your Supplies
The first thing you need to start the tick removal process is a tick-removal tool specifically designed to help you safely remove ticks from your dog in one piece. You may also use tweezers with a pointed end if you don’t have a tick-removal tool.
You should also wear a set of gloves to protect your hands during the process. Always wear gloves when dealing with ticks: The ticks found on your dog are very effective disease carriers, and some of these diseases can also affect you and your family.
Finally, have a pet-friendly antiseptic, disinfectant and a sealed container handy to dispose of the tick after you remove it.
2. Keep Your Dog Calm and Relaxed
Only try to remove ticks from your dog when they are calm and lying down. Wait until your dog is still enough for you to get a good grasp of the tick with the removal tool. If you try to pull it out quickly, you risk leaving the tick head stuck in your dog, which can increase the risk of infection. It will be easier to remove the tick in one piece if your dog is still. A bone or treat may help keep them occupied while you work to remove the tick.
3. Expose the Tick
Put on your gloves and use water or rubbing alcohol to flatten your dog’s hair around the tick. Gently part your dog’s fur around the tick and keep it flat with one hand, leaving your other hand free to pull the tick out.
Take your time with this step to successfully remove the tick. Since it has already latched onto your dog, it will stay in place and may not move around after you expose it. Ticks bury their head into the dog’s skin so their abdomen is the only visible part, so be careful not to leave the head embedded when removing the tick.
4. Use a Tick-removal Tool to Pull the Tick from Your Dog
A tick hook is shaped to get under the parasite’s body and pull it out in one motion without squeezing; squeezing the tick could push bacteria-rich tick saliva into the bite wound. These tools can be bought from your local vet’s office as well as some supermarkets and online retailers.
Follow the instructions on your tick-removal tool to remove the tick. The general process is usually:
- Slowly slide the tool underneath the tick.
- Pinch and pull gently.
- Move steadily and straight upward to remove the tick.
Regular tweezers are not generally recommended for tick removal, as these are more likely to crush the tick or leave the tick head embedded in your dog. If you’re using tweezers, pull the tick out in one straight motion. Don’t squeeze too hard, pull too fast or twist the tweezers.
5. Clean the Tick Bite
Gently wipe the affected area on your dog with an antiseptic designed for pets, or use soap and water.
6. Check for Other Ticks on Your Dog
After you have removed the tick, there’s a good chance there will be another one on your dog’s body, so be sure to check their coat thoroughly. Also check their feet, foot pads and ears, as ticks often frequent these areas.
7. Dispose of the Tick
After you remove the tick, take a picture of it and then place it in a lidded jar or sealable container with alcohol, close the lid and throw it away. Another option is to tape the tick to a piece paper, which will dry out the tick, effectively killing it. Throw away the piece of paper after snapping a photo.
Why take a photo before disposing of the tick? If you have a picture, you can show it to your vet for identification in the event that your dog starts to show any symptoms of tick diseases.
Be sure to throw away the gloves and wash your hands thoroughly afterward. Clean your tick tool with disinfectant and store it somewhere safely for future use.
8. Watch for Tick Disease Symptoms
Monitor your dog for any changes in behavior over the weeks or months following tick removal, and visit your vet if any unusual symptoms arise, such as lethargy or lack of energy, difficulty using one or more legs (lameness), or rapid breathing.
What to Do If the Tick’s Head Is Stuck in Your Dog’s Skin
It’s not uncommon for the tick’s head or mouthparts to break off as you remove it. If this happens and you can still see and grasp the embedded tick parts, you can try to pull the remaining parts out of your dog’s skin. If you’re unsuccessful or can’t get a good grasp, you have two options: Leave the area alone and let your dog’s body work the mouthparts out on its own, or make an appointment with your vet.
No matter which option you choose, avoid poking or prodding at the embedded tick parts; doing so can both be painful for your dog and push the tick further into your dog’s skin, which could cause irritation and infection.
If you leave the head in your dog’s skin, wash the area with warm soapy water. Over the next few days, check the area to ensure it’s healing properly and doesn’t look red or inflamed; contact your vet if you notice any signs of infection.
Prevent Ticks on Your Dog in the First Place
No one wants to go through the process of removing a tick from their dog. Luckily, there are steps dog owners can take to help protect their pups from these disease-carrying pests. Protecting your dog with a tick preventive, such as a monthly spot-on treatment or flea and tick collar, may help avoid this unpleasant process — both for you and your pet.
By Petfinder Staff
Five Facts about Ticks
- Ticks are most prevalent in the Northeast and Upper Midwest parts of the United States.
- Ticks usually leave an animal on their own when they are full, but this can often be after several days.
- There are over 850 tick species, about 100 of which are capable of transmitting diseases. Five of these species are common in the United States.
- Lyme disease is caused by the transmission of the bacteria called Borrelia burgdorferi which lives in infected black-legged ticks. Typical symptoms of Lyme disease include fever, headache, fatigue, and a skin rash. If left untreated, an infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system.
- The American dog tick does not carry Lyme disease but can carry Rocky Mountain spotted fever, which is transmittable to both dogs and humans and can be fatal.
Everyone can agree on one thing that makes our skin crawl: ticks. An unpleasant reality of pet ownership, ticks are a danger to both our health and that of our pets.
Were going to show you how to remove the pesky critters if you should find one, however tick prevention is the best line of defense. Since ticks can appear on a warm day in any season, year-round protection can safeguard you and your pet. While flea and tick collars have not proven effective, there are other options with varying degrees of effectiveness. Topical products such as Frontline get applied to your dog once a month and offer a relatively safe and easy solution to ticks.
After your dog has been anywhere outside where ticks lurking in fields, woods, and even in your back yard, make sure to do a head-to-toe scan of her body for ticks. Ticks like to hide in obscure places, such as in or behind the ears, between toes, and on the underbelly. Check your dog thoroughly and as soon as your dog comes in from outside in the hopes that you can remove ticks before they dig into the skin and become embedded.
If you’re lucky enough to find a tick that has not imbedded and is still moving around on your dog’s skin, it can be easily removed with your fingers or with tweezers and then disposed of safely (see Disposal bullet below).
But chances are you won’t be so lucky, the tick will be embedded, or firmly attached to your dog’s skin. Here are a few tips on how to get ticks off dogs, completely and safely.
- Prepare: Dab the tick and close-surrounding areas with rubbing alcohol. Use fine-tipped tweezers or a notched tick extractor, and protect your fingers with a tissue, paper towel, or latex gloves.
- Get Ready: Tick removal from dogs should consist of using whatever is most comfortable for you (tweezers, tissue, or a tick remover tool), grasp the tick’s body as close to the pet’s skin as possible (while being careful not to catch any skin).
- Go: Slowly and firmly, pull the tick straight out of the skin without squeezing. Pulling too fast can decapitate the tick, leaving the head embedded in your dog. Squeezing can release the icky fluids inside the tick into your dog’s body.
- Disposal: The tick should either be flushed down the toilet or dunked into rubbing alcohol. How to dispose of ticks is very important so that the tick does not reappear on your pet or you.
- After care: Clean the affected area with alcohol and apply antibacterial ointment to the area. You should see a small hole where the tick was. Watch this area for the next few days to ensure the infection does not set in.
A very small tick could be a deer tick. If you can, save it in alcohol and bring it to your veterinarian. Deer ticks often carry Lyme disease and, if you find one, there are likely more where it came from and you should consider vaccination as an option.
Regardless of tick type, note the date of the bite. Tick-related illness can take some time to show up so that date will be useful if illness occurs.
Tips for Limiting Human Exposure to Ticks
Prompt inspection of your body and clothing is necessary when you come inside. Look for any crawling or attached ticks and remove them quickly by the methods described in this article.
Wear light-colored clothing which allows you to better observe crawling ticks.
Apply repellents to discourage tick attachment. Repellents can be sprayed on boots and clothing and will last for several days. Repellents applied to the skin will last only a few hours before reapplication is necessary. (Note: Repellents containing permethrin are very toxic to cats. Avoid exposing your pets to repellents you apply to yourself.)
Ticks may also be carried into the household on clothing and pets and may only attach later, so both should be examined carefully to exclude the ticks.
Ticks are more than just a pest that irritates a cat or a dog. They can cause terrible illness, transfer blood borne disease and in some cases, cause paralysis and even death. Once identified, it’s important to get these blood-suckers off quickly but calmly to prevent further infection.
Brown dog ticks, bush ticks and kangaroo ticks can be found in rural areas, bushlands and in parks where dogs enjoy playing. Although kangaroo ticks are found throughout rural WA but they are also prevalent in bushland and parks in the outer areas of the metropolitan area where kangaroos inhabit. The most dangerous species, the paralysis tick, is predominantly found along the east coast of Australia and does not appear to have reached WA yet.
LIFECYCLE OF A TICK
Throughout their life cycle, ticks have three blood meals. Once hatched, they climb vegetation and wait for their first host to come along so that they can feed. After being successful, they drop off the animal, moult into the nymph stage and once again climb vegetation to await another host. Again, after feeding, they drop to the ground, moult and develop into an adult. For a third time they climb high to wait for a host. The male tick stays on the host searching for a female to mate with but it doesn’t suck blood from the animal. The female does feed from the host then will drop to the ground and lay 2500 to 3000 eggs in the leaf litter.
Each time a tick sucks blood from its host, it spits toxic saliva into the bite area and then sucks it back up with a little blood. It repeats this several times over the course of its feed leaving some of the toxin behind potentially spreading disease and possibly, depending on the species, causing paralysis or even death.
Since ticks have three different blood meals from three different animals during their life cycle, they can easily transfer diseases from one host to the other. The hosts can be native animals, domestic animals and even humans. In WA there are two serious dog diseases that affect red blood cells but fortunately studies have not yet shown that Lyme disease, a very serious illness which can be transferred from animals to humans by ticks, exists in Australia.
Ticks are usually visible on an animal (or human) once they have embedded themselves into the body whilst feeding. They can be dark red, brown and dark grey in colour and swell to around 25mm once engorged. They are more commonly found on dogs than on cats, especially if the dog spends time exercising in bushland where kangaroos inhabit.
It is important to regularly check pets for ticks, especially after spending time in bushland or at parks. Spend extra time searching around the head, neck and ears but attention should also be given to the rest of the body. Sometimes skin inflammation is noticed before the tick is seen.
If the pet shows any signs of sickness, lethargy or even a slight paralysis it may have been exposed to a tick bite and veterinary assistance should be sought immediately. If the tick can’t be found, the vet may resort to clipping the fur to make them more visible.
Tick infestations are never going to be eliminated from natural bushland but on private properties their prevalence can be reduced by keeping grass short, pruning shrubs along walk paths and building high fences to prevent access by kangaroos. Clean kennels and bedding frequently, treat the environment with an approved pesticide and limit the pet’s contact with stray animals, wildlife and rodents.
Spot-on treatments and sprays which are available combined with flea treatments are the most effective and easiest of all available tick controls since one application will remain effective for up to four weeks. For animals that live in areas where ticks are prevalent, these should be applied fortnightly.
Better Pets and Gardens can offer advice on the best tick treatment to suit the size and activity of your pet and also stock safe but effective products to be used to protect the pet’s environment.
Moving too fast when removing a tick could potentially cause more problems so it is best to stay calm and have a plan.
STEP 1 – Prepare a container for the tick.
After removing a tick from the skin, it will still be alive so throwing it in the rubbish bin will not kill it. Storing it in a screw-top jar, preferably in some rubbing alcohol, will ensure that it doesn’t escape and will be useful for veterinary testing if your pet does fall ill.
STEP 2 – Prepare yourself.
Wear latex gloves to that you don’t have direct contact with the tick or the bite area which can carry infective agents. Find someone to help hold the pet so that it stays quiet whilst you remove the tick and fetch a pair of fine-pointed tweezers and some surgical spirit or disinfectant.
STEP 3 – Remove the tick
Use the tweezers to take hold of the tick as close to the animal’s skin as possible and slowly lever the tick out, pulling straight upwards with steady, even pressure. Avoid squeezing the tick’s body as it will be engorged with fluids and may cause further contamination. Do not twist the tick as this may cause the mouth-parts to remain in the skin. If this does occur it shouldn’t be too much of a problem if it can’t be removed but so long as too much digging isn’t required, it would be worth taking out. A warm compress over the area might help the body to expel the remaining mouth-piece.
STEP 4 – Disinfection
After storing the tick in the jar, disinfect the area and wash your hands with soap and water. Sterilise the tweezers before storage.
STEP 5 – Monitoring
Always monitor a pet for several weeks after it has been bitten by a tick for signs of infection, inflammation or change of demeanour and if at all concerned, seek veterinary advice.
A FINAL NOTE OF CAUTION
Some will suggest aggravating a tick by applying a volatile liquid such as methylated or surgical spirit to it or suffocating it with Vaseline to cause it to back out itself but these methods are problematic when dealing with animals and can take several hours to have success, if they do at all. In fact, these methods may result in more problems as they can make the tick spit out more poison and also, do not capture the tick which can then remain in the environment as a further risk for the pet and the family.
How Do I Get Rid of Ticks on My Dog?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends using fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible, then pulling “upward with steady, even pressure” without twisting or jerking. After removing the tick, clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol or soap and water. 1 Your vet can also provide advice for removing ticks, and recommend a reliable tick control product.
What Are the Signs of Ticks on Dogs?
When looking for ticks, you may feel or spot ticks on your dog’s body underneath their fur. When it first attaches, an adult tick will look like a tiny round bug with eight legs. After feeding, it will swell up to look bloated and bluish-gray, and eventually detach. If that tick has already detached, you may notice a small bump, lump, or red rash at the site of the bite.
How Does Oral Tick Protection for Dogs Work?
When a dog takes NexGard ® (afoxolaner), the active ingredient protects them by spreading throughout their system. When a tick bites, they get a tiny dose of that active ingredient, which is designed to quickly kill them. However, the active ingredient will eventually leave your dog’s body, which is why it’s important to dose on a regular schedule.
What Are the Signs of Lyme Disease in Dogs?
Many dogs with a Lyme infection will not show symptoms, and may not display any noticeable, abnormal signs. Common signs in dogs with Lyme disease include fever, lameness, swollen joints, lethargy, and loss of appetite. In rare cases, Lyme disease can progress to a condition that causes serious damage to the kidneys, and is often fatal. Lyme disease can be tough to spot, which is why reducing your dog’s risk is so important.
Sick of ticks? Defend your dog from tip to tail with monthly tick protection.
Make Monthly Flea and Tick Protection Delicious
Get NexGard From Your Vet
Ask your vet about NexGard—it’s the flea and tick protection vets recommend most. 2
Give Your Dog NexGard
NexGard is a bite-sized dose of beef-flavored deliciousness, and dogs love the taste. 3
Each dose of NexGard lasts for a full 30 days of adventure, and you’ll love protecting your pet every month.
Heartworm disease is a year-round threat. Pair up NexGard with a heartworm disease preventive.
- Tick Removal. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/ticks/removing_a_tick.html. Accessed October 16, 2020.
- Data on file at Boehringer Ingelheim.
- Data on file at Boehringer Ingelheim.
NexGard ® and FRONTLINE ® are registered trademarks and FRONTLINE VET LABS™ is a trademark of the Boehringer Ingelheim Group. HEARTGARD ® and the Dog & Hand logo ® are registered trademarks of Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health USA Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owner. ©2020 Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health USA Inc., Duluth, GA. All rights reserved. US-PET-0743-2020-V4
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION:
The 3-Step Tick Treatment Guide
Eliminating a tick infestation will mean treating the 3 places ticks are most commonly found: your pets, your home, and your yard. We recommend you begin with your pets and then move on to your home, then your yard. Failing to treat all three areas will likely lead to failure and can result in an even worse infestation. Luckily, tick treatment follows the same steps no matter the tick type or species.
Read our guide below to learn how to treat for ticks. Not sure if you have a tick? Read our guide on what ticks look like to be sure you have the right pest.
Treat Your Pets for Ticks
The first step in getting rid of ticks is to treat the pets and animals that live on your property. When choosing a tick treatment for your pet, it is important to take their species, age, weight, and health into consideration. Always read the label of the product to be sure you can use it on your pet.
There are 5 ways to treat your pets for ticks: tick and flea drops, tick and flea sprays, insecticide baths, medicated collars, and preventative medication. Consult your veterinarian to determine which treatment path is best for your pet.
Spot-On Pet Tick Drops
Spot-on products, also known as pet tick and flea drops, are a popular choice of tick treatment because they are quick and convenient to use and they do not cause much stress or disruption to pets. Tick and flea drops typically come in formulas for dogs and cats and should not be used on animals younger than 12 weeks old.
It is very important that you get the product directly on the animal’s skin for it to work properly. Most spot-on treatments direct the user to part the pet’s hair between the shoulder blades and squeeze out the entire contents directly onto the skin. Applying the product between the animal’s shoulder blades will usually prevent the animal from licking the application spot.
Ticks will start to die within 24 hours of the application of drops. Some ticks may die while still attached to your animal. It is important to follow your veterinarian’s instructions on how to remove ticks using tweezers. Most drop treatments should be reapplied every 4-6 weeks to maintain control. As always, consult the product label and your veterinarian to be sure a product is suitable to use on your pet.
Products needed for Step 1A
Give Your Pet a Tick Bath
A flea and tick bath with medicated shampoo will offer an immediate kill of the ticks that are on the animal. Be sure to read the label of the shampoo as many products have species or age restrictions, and therefore might not be suitable for your pet.
The downside to using a flea and tick medicated bath is that most animals hate bathing and can become stressed. It is important to note that flea and tick baths only kill the ticks that are on the animal at the time of the bath. Most shampoos do not prevent further infestations.
Some ticks may die while still attached to your animal. It is very important that you follow your veterinarian’s instruction on how to remove ticks using tweezers.
Pet Tick Spray
Tick sprays provide a quick kill of ticks and short-term protection against re-infestation. Tick sprays are also a good alternative for pets that are terrified of baths. Pet tick sprays are available in both aerosol cans and squirt bottles.
To use tick spray, read the product label to determine how much spray should be used for the size of your animal. Wearing gloves, spray the animal and rub the spray into the animal’s coat. Some sprays may have a strong odor, which could upset the pet (or its owner!). The odor should disappear within a few hours.
As always, be sure to consult the product label for age and species restrictions.
Products needed for Step 1C
Tick Collars and Medication
After treating your dog or cat for ticks, use a medicated collar. Flea and tick collars, like those from Seresto, provide 8 months of prevention and treatment against parasites like ticks. Ticks are eliminated within 48 hours of use.
Your veterinarian may also prescribe a monthly tick prevention medication for your pet. Contact your vet for more information.
Products needed for Step 1D
Indoor Tick Treatment
If you have spotted even one tick in your home, we highly recommend you treat for ticks. Depending on the severity of the infestation, it can take weeks or even months to fully eliminate ticks from the home. By using a mixture of insecticides, you can prevent re-infestation.
There are a variety of indoor tick products to choose from. Liquid insecticides, like Tempo SC Ultra, are often mixed with water in a sprayer and applied around door and window frames, along baseboards, and in hard to reach areas around the home. Aerosol insecticides, like Precor 2625 Premise Spray, are pre-packaged in an aerosol can and sprayed lightly across carpets, furniture, drapes, and pet bedding. Tick dusts, like CimeXa Insecticide Dust, are applied around door and window frames, in cracks and crevices, along baseboards, and in hard to reach areas such as under the sink, after an insecticide has been used to prevent re-infestation.
All tick treatment products are to be used on the cracks, crevices, and voids of your home and should not be broadcast sprayed along your floors or walls.
We highly recommend the addition of an Insect Growth Regulator, or IGR, to your indoor tick treatment plan. IGRs act as birth control for ticks, preventing immature ticks from reaching sexual maturity and repopulating. Some insecticides have an IGR built-in while others require the addition of an IGR when mixed with water in a sprayer. Read the label of your product to determine if an insecticide includes an IGR, or give our customer service team a call at 1-866-581-7378 to learn more.
Use at least 1 insecticide and 1 IGR, if not all of the product types mentioned above, to control ticks indoors. Or, purchase an indoor flea and tick kit to receive the products you need in one discounted package.
Remember, ticks are biologically programmed to climb upward to look for their next host. Keep this in mind when treating your home. Be sure to check the backs and arms of furniture when treating for ticks.
Re-treat as often as the product labels indicate until there are no more signs of ticks in the home. It may take several treatments to eliminate ticks from the home so have patience and be diligent.