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A beautiful, yellow-eyed cat receiving treatment. Doug Hall feeding a well-loved client.

Paws for thought- Article 4

28th March 2019

Have you "TICKed" off your pet's parasite protection?

 

We're pleased to see that the weather is improving but unfortunately with the sunshine and warmer temperatures, we are starting to see the emergence of more ticks. With our warmer winters, it has now been shown that ticks don’t fully go into hibernation and so they can be present all year round. We’ve had a few patients come in with ticks recently, so we thought this would be the perfect time to discuss ticks and how to stop your pet from getting them.

Not only do ticks cause a nasty bite reaction, they can also be vectors for serious diseases such as Lyme disease and Babesia. Until recently Babesia was not seen in the UK, but sadly due to stopping the requirements for compulsory tick treatment before entering the UK, there have been some confirmed cases, starting in 2016.

With that in mind, we do recommend being vigilant at checking your pets for ticks all year round, especially if they have a long coat which might be hiding the parasites.

Did you know there are almost 900 species of tick? Luckily, we don't have that many species in the UK, but the two most common ones we see are Ixodes ricinus (the sheep tick) and Ixodes hexagonus (the hedgehog tick). 

 

How to prevent against ticks

We can prescribe very effective anti-tick treatments to prevent against your pet getting these horrible parasites.

Please phone the practice to discuss which protocol would be most suitable for your pet as there are different ways of giving tick protection. These include a tablet (Bravecto) or a collar (Seresto), and we can help you determine what is the most appropriate treatment, depending on your pet’s lifestyle and risk of acquiring a tick.  

 

What should you do if you find a tick?

The only way to fully remove a tick is to make sure you twist and not just pull it out. Twisting will ensure that you remove the embedded mouth parts as well as just the body.

We find that the easiest way to do this is by using a Tick'O'Tom- come down to the practice, we sell them here!

If you are at all unsure of how to remove the tick (or whether what you have found is definitely a tick...), we are very happy for you to book an appointment and we can remove it for you. Please phone us at The Cape Veterinary Clinic on 01483 538990.

 

Catherine Hannah BVSc MRCVS

References: Big Tick Project, MSD animal health, Doncaster Animal Clinic

 

 

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