FLEAS & TICKS

April 2018

 

With the weather warming up, and all of the creepy crawlies waking up, we want to remind you about the importance of parasite prevention.  Regular flea & tick treatments are an easy way to keep you four legged friend healthy and happy.  Not to mention, keeping your home and you parasite free.

FLEAS AND TICKS

How does my pet get fleas/ticks?

Other Animals - Even if your pet is not around any other animals, but those within your home, this is a possibility.  Wild animals, out door or feral cats and any other animal that may wander through your yard can carry and therefore spread fleas & ticks.

Human Transportation - You and your human guests can also carry fleas & ticks into your home.  Not only can you carry them from one animal you interact with to the next, you can also get hitch hikers from simply being in the great outdoors.

Outside the Home - Anytime your pet is outside the "safety" of your home, the chances of getting fleas & ticks increases.  So, while you may be on alert after taking your pet to the lake or on a hike through the woods or a field, remember there is always an opportunity for your pet to pick up fleas & ticks.

This doesn't mean you should keep your pet in a bubble.  Continue reading to see how you can help prevent/treat and detect for fleas & ticks if your pet does get them. (petMD)


TICKS

aad21094da5aaa5fd973eaf36b7ab3a1142052572157856aba93bcd76f9fb673e50d3b3e81cd96503f80b3f11c547ff4d59e04382812250195e3630b21d0f72d.jpg

What are the most common ticks in the Cincinnati area?

American Dog Tick

dog.jpg

Blacklegged Tick (Deer Tick)

deer.jpg

Lone Star Tick

lonestar.jpg

(OSU)

What is the life-cycle of a tick?

0909de08d34d86098842cb450dca566b7ac84e73078e96bfdedac1cdbe8511faa51fc5effa1bf3bbd42b1e4e4162b9e36230cd50d3d84a24b1b531ff2abe0be5.jpg

(ticks must consume blood at all stages to continue developing)

What is the biggest concern if my pet does have a tick(s)?

Generally speaking, the number one conrcern in regards to ticks is Lyme Disease. Luckily, the only tick to carry Lyme disease in our are is the Blacklegged/Deer Tick.  The CDC lists a number of other diseases that can be transmitted via ticks.

Very small, young or old pets may also be at risk for anemia.

How do I prevent, treat, and detect for ticks?

Prevent/Treat

Outdoors: Keep lawn and weeds under control to create a less habitable environment for flea larvae and adults. Discourage nesting or roosting birds and other mammals on or near the premises.

Pet: There are many choices to consider when treating your pet: shampoos, aerosols, dips, sprays, dusts (powders), collars, dab-ons, spot-ons, and monthly tablet or oral liquid treatments. It is best to consult your pet's vet as to their recommendation. (OSU)

Detect

Thoroughly combing through your pet's fur is the easiest way to look for ticks.  They like to hide in crevices, so make sure to look in between toes, in ears and under "arm pits".

Removal

It’s important to note how long the tick fed before you discovered it. If it is relatively flat, that means the tick attached recently and hasn’t been feeding long. If it’s engorged or burrowed into the skin, the tick may have fed for an extended time.

Research conducted by Ohio State University has found that transmission of disease, such as Lyme, begins at approximately 24 hours. There is greater risk for infection the longer feeding occurs.

The best way to do that is using fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible. Pull upward on the tick with steady, even pressure. After removing the tick, clean the area thoroughly. Be sure that you’ve removed all of it. (DO NOT TRY TO BURN OR DROWN THE TICK)


FLEAS

ccaaac9962584c93ece8480b769b4554b65908b73dadfd97e5bb7d5c7b87b35034c30f9cf98083ac0b0f48edc15bd5455f91dae957b143f54200dd1244589c49.jpg

What is the most common flea species?

The most common species found on household dogs and cars in North America is the domestic cat flea. this species of flea selects dogs, cats, and humans as its preferred hosts. (petMD)

What is the life-cycle of a flea?

7b9adb4c2cead5832b39e70f5331ade386f7677560a665d2988a9d2cd025a9184960dce6c9dab17b1b942186cc136e1bc1bec9047c8832d220607ac9b9477416.png

What is the biggest concern if my dog or cat has fleas?

Flea bite dermatitis, which is a specific allergy to flea saliva.

Tapeworms - these are parasites that are passed to your pet when they actually ingest the flea.

Flea bite anemia - when young or small animals (such as puppies and kittens) have a severe flea infestation and the fleas feed so much on these animals that their red blood cell count decreases (petMD)

How do I prevent, detect, and treat for fleas?

Prevent/Treat

Outdoors: Keep lawn and weeds under control to create a less habitable environment for flea larvae and adults. Discourage nesting or roosting birds and other mammals on or near the premises. Screen or seal vents, chimneys, crevices, etc., whererodents may enter crawlspaces and buildings.

Indoors: Regularly wash or replace pet bedding, groom pets and vacuum frequently. (Frequent vacuuming has been shown to remove up to 95 percent of the flea eggs, some larvae, and adults.)

Pet: There are many choices to consider when treating your pet: shampoos, aerosols, dips, sprays, dusts (powders), collars, dab-ons, spot-ons, and monthly tablet or oral liquid treatments. It is best to consult your pet's vet as to their recommendation. (OSU)

Detect

You may notice your pet excessively scratching or licking. This doesn't absolutely mean your pet has fleas but it's a good first indicator.  Your main source of evidence an infestation may exist, other than spotting live fleas, is flea dirt.  This looks like tiny dark brown/black specks, it is actually the fleas' feces.  You may notice a build up around the ears and on your pets abdomen.  Cats can be a little more tricky as they clean themselves so regularly.  If you notice licking or scratching, take a flea comb through a few spots on your cat to look for live fleas or dirt. (petMD)


DOG OF THE MONTH

ELSA

IMG_0891.jpg

Elsa is a beautiful 6 year old golden retriever. She enjoys running around with her pals in day camp every week and barking whenever possible!

Kelly Zeller