What to do if a tick is not found on the dog, but there are symptoms of piroplasmosis
Very often there is a picture when no tick was found in the dog, and the dog suddenly gets sick, and the symptoms resemble piroplasmosis.
- This phenomenon can be explained by the fact that either, when examining the dog, the parasite had not yet had time to suck, but only wandered in the wool in search of a convenient place, or, having had enough, it had already fallen off without being detected.
- Such cases are dangerous in that the owners write off the dog’s malaise by accidental poisoning or some other disease, and sometimes they begin their own improper treatment.
- The absence of a protruding bloodsucker on the dog’s body makes it difficult to link symptoms with a tick bite in a dog, what to do. many in such cases do not know. The most important thing here is to pay attention to the color of the urine! If it has darkened, then there is piroplasmosis! The diagnosis is confirmed by a blood test taken from the dog at the veterinary clinic.
What are the symptoms of piroplasmosis in a dog
Owners of barking pets who are faced with a tick-borne attack for the first time do not really understand what symptoms to expect from a tick bite in a dog and what to do in the future. Indeed, many signs of piroplasmosis are similar to other dog sores. plague, enteritis, leptospirosis, which are not associated with a tick bite and require a completely different treatment.
A special problem is caused by the frequent fact when the dog was bitten by a tick, but was not found on the body, and the owner may not realize for a long time that the deterioration of the condition of his four-legged friend is associated with a tick.
In each dog, the infection manifests itself in a purely individual way. The presence of pyroplasmas in the blood is more difficult to tolerate:
- Young dogs;
- Chronically sick dogs;
- Purebred dogs.
Therefore, an understanding of the picture of the disease and what symptoms clearly indicate it will help to start emergency treatment on time.
- The earliest signs to help alert the owner is a decrease in dog activity. The dog loses its usually inherent playfulness, does not show joy, becomes lethargic, does not ask for a walk, stops jumping and running carelessly.
- The next initial symptoms that allow one to suspect piroplasmosis are loss of appetite and refusal not only from food, but also from a previously loved and desired delicacy. Nutrition becomes problematic. the dog literally fails to feed. The fact that the dog turns away from the treat is the SOS signal in the early days of infection.!
- After, on the 3rd. 5th day, more alarming signs of digestion appear. vomiting, often with mucus, because the dog remained hungry all this time, and sometimes diarrhea with a characteristic bright yellow or greenish color of liquid masses. Diarrhea symptoms are not always observed, the stool may look normal, but the color changes to the indicated.
- At the same time, you can already notice that the dog is trying to move less, as if it brings him suffering. Her steps are constrained, she prefers to constantly lie away from the master’s eyes and not leave a secluded place. Such symptoms already indicate the progression of the disease.
- But the main signs of piroplasmosis are associated with a change in the color of urine. it darkens noticeably, acquiring a resemblance to beer or coffee, or it can change to a dark brown color. Such symptoms unmistakably indicate precisely the pyroplasmas in the blood that destroy red blood cells, and the need to urgently begin treatment, otherwise irreversible processes can soon kill the dog.
- In healthy adult dogs, the picture may be completely asymptomatic, when the dog dies suddenly for the owners, without showing any special signs of discomfort before this. But an attentive owner, even with the usual behavior of his dog, will notice an altered suspicious color of urine, and guess that this is due to the consequences of a tick bite on his dog.
What to do if a tick is found on a dog
After the examination reveals a tick sticking out of the dog’s body, it is better to pull it out as soon as possible. The sooner the fact of a tick bite in a dog is revealed, the symptoms and treatment will be easier, and the outcome will be more favorable.
The duration of the bite of an infectious tick in a dog is of great importance, since the entry of pyroplasmas into the victim’s body is not interrupted during the period of feeding the bloodsucker. Accordingly, the earlier this process is stopped, the fewer infectious agents will enter the dog’s blood, and the easier and more successful the treatment will be.
Feeling the dog, you need to carefully walk along the folds, front suspension and neck, look into the ears, do not forget about the groin.
- A sucked mite is felt through the fur, like a hard bump the size of a pea or a small raisin, depending on the size of the portion of blood that the parasite has managed to absorb.
- Having parted the fur in a suspicious place and finding a protruding swollen tick, it is removed.
- If a veterinarian is available, it is best to have this extraction procedure done by a specialist. But since time does not stand, in the absence of such an opportunity, you can pull out the parasite on your own.
- The best and most convenient way is to remove it with tweezers, when the tick is covered with a tool near the skin, where the proboscis entered the body, and, turning to either side, with a slight pulling movement, the whole bloodsucker is removed and alive.
- If you don’t have tweezers at hand, you can pull out the bloodsucker by hand, wrapped in a napkin or bandage with your fingers. The actions are the same. grab as close to the skin as possible, twist and extract.
- After removing the parasite, the wound on the dog’s skin must be carefully disinfected, the tick must be burned, scalded, or well crushed between layers of paper or fabric, and only then discarded.
How is piroplasmosis treated?
Prescribing treatment for an infected dog after a tick bite is based on laboratory data. Blood under a microscope clearly shows the presence of pyroplasmas. The therapy is aimed in a complex at destroying pathogens and cleansing the dog’s body from intoxication caused by the activity of the infection.
- Treatment is prescribed exclusively by a veterinarian, self-medication is unacceptable and entails negative consequences for the dog.
- You can often find folk advice on how to treat a dog after a tick bite. Exotic recipes are offered, up to the infusion of vodka.
- This is absolutely not worth doing! Not only will such alternative therapy not help the dog, but a precious chance to really cure the pet will be missed.!
Treatment and nutrition of a sick and recovering dog
The bite of an infectious tick in a dog causes symptoms that require treatment and special nutrition, that is, a complex for caring for a sick animal.
After the dog has been bitten by a tick and piroplasmosis is detected, it is transferred to a diet and adheres to this regime until complete recovery.
- Meals include a light diet without heavy animal fats. chicken fillet, beef tenderloin, oatmeal.
- Food must be freshly prepared, water must be clean, you can drink rosehip broth without sugar.
- The veterinarian, in order not to prepare food for the dog every time, can advise a ready-made commercial food suitable for this period.
- The gentle regime also applies to walking. training, hunting, competitions and exhibitions are postponed until the veterinarian allows.
- The load on the body of a recovering dog should be minimal. a leisurely step, short walks for short distances, restrictions on outdoor games.
The duration of treatment and recovery of the dog depends on the severity of the transferred infection, and may take 1. 2 months or longer. To control severely ill-tolerated dogs, you will have to donate blood again and show the pet to the doctor.
How a dog gets piroplasmosis
Tick on the dog’s body
Pyroplasmas have two types of hosts during their cyclic development. The first as intermediate are dogs, foxes, wolves, jackals and other canines, and the second as the final ones are ixodid ticks, in the body of which pyroplasmas reproduce and further transform.
Females. carriers of the infection transfer it to the laid eggs, from where the already infected larvae emerge. Therefore, at the larval stage, and in the future, such a tick, biting a healthy dog, will infect it with an infection.
Peak outbreaks in dogs coincide with tick-borne activity, which, unlike the threat to humans, is more extended over time. Because the larvae and nymphs practically do not bite a person, but a dog for them is a completely accessible victim. This is when the threatening tick bite symptoms occur in the dog.
Registration of cases of piroplasmosis occurs throughout the entire period of positive temperatures. from the very beginning of spring to the end of autumn, without stopping even in the middle of summer, when it is the larvae and nymphs that begin to hunt. But general outbreaks traditionally occur in mid. late spring and late summer. mid autumn.
The dog, running on the ground covered with vegetation, becomes an easy target for the bloodsuckers waiting for a victim there. It is enough for them to just catch on to the wool, and then calmly under its cover look for a convenient place for sucking and unhurried saturation for several hours, which for females of the parasite can drag on for several days.
Therefore, for a pet, even if it is treated with an anti-mite agent, it is better to do a thorough examination after each walk through the thickets of grass and bushes, probing especially vulnerable places on the body that are preferred by bloodsuckers:
- Head and ear area;
- Neck and chest;
- Front and hind feet, groin area.
Unfortunately, not a single, even the best remedy will completely save the dog from a tick-borne attack, which is why dog owners should not lose their vigilance in a dangerous season. if treatment is not started on time, the death of the pet is inevitable.
Naturally, the symptoms of piroplasmosis in a dog after a tick bite will not be caused by every parasite found on it, but visually, alas, no one can determine whether a tick is dangerous or sterile.
Therefore, already only one fact of the presence of a sucking bloodsucker on a pet is obliged to alert the responsible owner, ignoring and frivolity in such cases often leads to the loss of a four-legged friend.
What signs and symptoms are after a tick bite in a dog
If on the street the dog is bitten by a tick, then the consequences can be negative, and sometimes, alas, and lethal. She is at risk of infection with piroplasmosis, an infection caused by protozoa of the genus Piroplasma canis for canines. You can also find another name for the disease. babesiosis.
These pathogens live in the salivary glands of a tick infected with pyroplasmas, and get there when the bloodsucker feeds on the blood of a sick animal. After piroplasmas are transmitted from parasites to new generations, their larvae and nymphs can also cause disease.
Infection with piroplasmosis in dogs leads to high mortality, therefore it is so important not to miss the characteristic symptoms after a bite in order to start treating on time and not to lose a four-legged friend.
Prevention of tick bites in dogs
To prevent the very possibility of a tick bite in a dog, it is required to regularly treat it with anti-tick agents. drops to the withers area, sprays, or wear an acaricidal collar.
Hunting breeds that are most at risk of becoming a victim of a tick attack can be comprehensively treated to increase the guarantee of protection:
- Drops plus collar;
- Drops plus spray;
- Collar plus spray.
A recent development. tablets inside, which protect the dog from parasite attacks for 3 months, have shown themselves well and have been tested by domestic veterinarians.
You can vaccinate your pet for the season against piroplasmosis with the vaccines “Nobivak Pyro” or “Pirodog”. But they do not guarantee one hundred percent protection due to the weak degree of acquired immunity, but they successfully neutralize the risk of death.
Is encephalitis dangerous for dogs?
Until now, we have talked about the disease piroplasmosis. Encephalitis is primarily dangerous for humans, but against the background of weakened immunity, it can also affect the animal. If a dog is bitten by an encephalitis tick, the symptoms can be severe. Incubation period. 2-3 weeks. Usually, the temperature rises, seizures develop, motor functions are impaired, and paralysis is possible. Hypersensitivity of the head and neck, severe pain is often manifested. Behavior can vary from apathetic to aggressive. Later, paralysis of the facial and eye muscles occurs. If the dog is bitten by an encephalitis tick, there is no specific treatment, and the prognosis is usually poor, with a high probability of death.
How to remove a tick correctly
When the dog was bitten by a tick, we already know what to do. It is imperative to remove the parasite. It should be noted here that normally ticks are sucked only 5-6 hours after traveling through the body. When combing your pet after a walk, you can catch an uninvited guest before he has time to suck.
If you missed this moment and found an already swollen ball of a drunk tick, then you need to remove it. Be sure to wear gloves if the tick is a carrier of, for example, encephalitis, then in contact with skin and mucous membranes, there is a high probability of infection. To get the tick to pull out its head a little, drip oil, cologne or nail polish on it. About one drop every minute. After a few minutes, grab the insect with a rope loop as close to the proboscis as possible and try to rotate to one side. It usually comes out after two turns.
There is another good way: heat the tip of the needle over a flame and bring it to the place where the proboscis is immersed in the skin. Usually the insect pulls out the head immediately. You can’t pull the tick, there is a high probability of rupture. The site of the bite should be treated with iodine or brilliant green and observed for the tumor to subside. If it does not decrease, but on the contrary, redness and abscesses are observed, then an urgent need to consult a doctor.
What is the danger of a tick bite?
Microscopic parasites carried by this insect settle in the blood, destroy its cells, completely disrupting metabolic processes and causing severe intoxication. Normally, symptoms appear 6-10 days after the bite. But they depend on the form of the disease. With its hyperacute course, the symptoms appear literally on the second day, and this ends with the death of the animal.
The acute form occurs quite often, we observe its manifestation within a week after the dog has been bitten by a tick. “What to do at home?” This is the question most often asked by animal owners. Unfortunately, without special tests and medication, you cannot do anything. See your veterinarian as soon as possible. There is a chronic form, which is extremely difficult to diagnose. A short rise in temperature and lethargy are replaced by an improvement in the condition, after which the animal again refuses food. Such fluctuations can last long enough, but gradually the weakness builds up, the animal gets tired quickly, it rarely has a good appetite.
When to sound the alarm
The tick itself is not dangerous, it cannot drink all the blood. But it is a carrier of blood parasites that settle in red blood cells and destroy them. They multiply very quickly, and if you do not take action, this in 98% of cases will lead to the death of the animal. Many owners get scared if the dog is bitten by a tick. What to do in such a situation? First of all, don’t panic. It happens that a dog brings ticks on the withers all spring, but it never gets sick. Usually infected from 3 to 14% of the entire generation of bloodsucking. Therefore, you should remove the tick and observe your pet. Any change in behavior or condition. This is a reason to go to a veterinary clinic.
So, the dog was bitten by a tick. Piroplasmosis was identified and successfully defeated. It would seem, what more could you want. And the dog is still sluggish, asleep and does not want to eat. This condition is normal on the first day, but if it does not get better the next day, you need to tell your doctor about it.
In any case, within ten days you will need to take her to the vet, inject vitamins, saline solutions, drugs that improve the functioning of the heart, restore the functions of the liver, gall bladder, and gastrointestinal tract. It is necessary to carefully monitor the condition of the animal; at the slightest deterioration, it is necessary to undergo a repeated analysis for piroplasmosis.
Re-infection is possible. Immunity is not formed. over, each subsequent infection will be more difficult to tolerate than the previous one. The animal may not survive the third bite.
A dog was bitten by a tick: what to do at home? Tick bite symptoms
Spring days beckon to the forest or the river. Of course, your dog does not want to stay in a cramped apartment, and you take him with you so that he can play plenty on fresh grass. Sorry, it’s spring. This is also a time of increased danger to meet a tick. Having woken up after hibernation, these insects are very active, they need fresh blood for life and reproduction. If a dog is bitten by a tick, what to do?
Symptoms We Should Know
If your dog is bitten by a tick, symptoms will begin to appear within the first week. With a lightning-fast course of the disease, they will develop so rapidly that you will not have time to take action. But this is not a very common form of piroplasmosis. Usually there is a sharp rise in temperature up to 41-42 degrees. Please note that this symptom does not appear all the time. This is only a reaction to the introduction of parasites, and after one or two days the temperature will return to normal, and later will begin to decrease. Therefore, after removing the tick, be sure to check the temperature in the dog’s anus every day. Normally, it is 38.5 degrees.
The difficulty in diagnosing is that if a dog is bitten by a tick, the symptoms may vary. But almost everyone has a refusal to eat, apathy, drowsiness. Trembling, shortness of breath and pale mucous membranes are also characteristic. Often, animals begin to roll over on their backs and whine, they are tormented by pain in the abdomen. Bitches may have vaginal bleeding.
If the dog is bitten by a tick, the symptoms will increase, so do not waste time, tomorrow will only get worse. There may be unsteadiness of gait, failure of the hind limbs. This is not typical, but vomiting and diarrhea sometimes occur. A little later, a fetid odor from the mouth is observed, and the urine darkens, blood may appear in it.
Any disease is easier to prevent than to cure. There are many products on the market today that are designed to prevent tick bites. This is a collar, drops on the withers, spray, powder. Since they do not offer 100% protection against ticks, owners often use several species together. For example, they put on a collar, supplement its action with drops on the withers, which last for several months, and before each going out into nature, they are additionally treated with a spray. This significantly reduces the risk of illness and is much less expensive than treatment and rehabilitation therapy. But if the dog is bitten by a tick, the signs will not keep you waiting. Don’t comfort yourself with the thought that you have completely protected your pet. The sooner the correct diagnosis is made, the easier the treatment will be.
There are situations when you are far out of town, in a village, and your pet begins to develop unfavorable symptoms. When the animal has refused to drink and eat, try to stay hydrated. Try pouring 100-150 ml of liquid into your mouth every hour. If the animal is vomiting, then it is better to give an enema or subcutaneous injection in the same amount. The body will take up the necessary fluid. If the animal is large and you cannot take it to the clinic for analysis, do it yourself. Rub the dog’s ear with alcohol, use a sharp scalpel to cut a blood vessel close to the edge, and collect the blood on a glass plate. Dry a little, and you can go to the laboratory or veterinary clinic, and let your pet wait.
Three times a day, you need to subcutaneously inject 20 ml of glucose, as well as vitamins B6 and B12, in an ampoule once a day. But without antiparasitic drugs, your pet will not recover, and it is very dangerous to inject them without tests. Only if there is no way to get to the veterinary clinic, where a blood test can be done, and the most appropriate clinical picture is observed (a sharp increase and subsequent decrease in temperature, dark urine, pale mucous membranes), you can independently inject the drug “Azidine” or “Veriben”. You can enter 1 ml of a 7% solution per 20 kg of body weight.
Drug treatment and consequences
Plasma infected with the virus strikes the vital organs of the animal. At the first symptoms, try to contact the veterinarian. To detect an infection, you will need to pass urine and blood tests.
Veterinarians do not advise to carry out medication at home on their own, but if for some reason the owner cannot take the pet to the hospital or call a doctor at home, then you can purchase the necessary drugs in the veterinary pharmacy and try to save the pet yourself. The drugs used in this case: Piro-stop, Berenil, Azidin-Vet, Pirosan, Veriben or their analogues. Injections are given with novocaine, intramuscularly, in the back thigh.
If the dog is bitten by a tick, then home treatment gives only 20% of a positive result. She needs 1-2 hour intravenous drips to clear the blood. Without special education, no owner is capable of delivering a dropper.
Antiparasitic drugs are highly toxic. They kill the virus and harm the body at the same time. One injection does not save, which is why, in parallel with direct treatment aimed at destroying the virus, supportive therapy is required for vital organs: kidneys, liver, gastrointestinal tract and heart (saline and diuretics). When exiting the acute phase, long-term rehabilitation of the pet is required.
With the transferred pyroplasmosis, immunity is not formed. Each subsequent case of infection will be more difficult to cure the previous one.
Often, after a course of treatment, life-long complications form:
- Heart failure;
- Violation of the central nervous system;
- Organ anemia;
- Diseases of the joints;
- Kidney disorders.
Be carefull! If a dog is bitten by an encephalitis tick, then there is a danger of human infection with the encephalitis virus (in case of contact with a sick animal through the ingress of infected saliva into the blood).
In order to protect the tailed friend from ticks in the spring-autumn period, it is required to use the available means: drops on the withers, a special collar, spray for wool.
Many dog owners, trying to protect their pet, use them at the same time. Drops are dripped, pills are given, a collar is put on and the animal is sprayed with a spray before each walk. This cannot be done!
All products are toxic. Observe the regulations for use. An excess of toxins can lead to poisoning.
Examine your pet carefully after a walk. Breeds with voluminous and thick hair require special attention.
On well-processed wool, parasites do not get along, they either die or look for another prey. It is here that the danger lies for a person that from a walk a dog can bring a viral insect into the house.
Stages and symptoms of piroplasmosis
We remind you that after the removal of the parasite, the animal must be monitored. The incubation period for the development of the virus can be rapid and sluggish. It can last for 24-36 hours or appear within a week. The period depends on factors:
- Number of bites containing an infectious virus;
- The health status of the pet before the bite;
- Age (it is believed that individuals over 4 years old are more resistant to the virus);
- Has the vaccination been carried out.
It is not always possible to detect and remove a tick in a timely manner. It is possible that, having drunk blood, he fell off on his own. To understand that a dog has been bitten by a tick “, you need to know what the clinical picture of the development of piroplasmosis looks like, and what are its stages and symptoms.
- Lethargy, depression;
- Appetite disappears;
A positive result of treating the disease at an early stage is achieved in 2 days. Next, recovery therapy is prescribed.
- A sharp rise in temperature up to 41-42 degrees;
- The urine becomes dark, atypical.
- Smell from the mouth;
- Body trembling;
- Diarrhea with blood particles;
- The eyeballs take on a yolk tint.
- Vaginal bleeding in bitches.
Extremely difficult stage
- A set of symptoms of the primary and secondary stage;
- Shaky movements
- Limb failure
The chance of salvation in a difficult stage is small. The treatment period lasts from 1-3 weeks and has serious further consequences. Limb failure and cramps lead to cerebral edema, no escape.
According to veterinary reports, in the case of an advanced stage of the disease, 98 out of 100 dogs die. If a dog is bitten by a tick, then timely recognized symptoms and timely treatment are fundamental factors.
A dog bitten by a tick: what to do
What to do if a dog is bitten by a tick? The question is relevant in spring and summer. The first ticks can be seen in April. After hibernation, they need food. fresh blood of animals and people. The peak of their activity falls on the month of May. During the breeding season, the number of blood-sucking colonies increases millions of times. In June, offspring (larvae) are born, which from the first minutes of life can feed on blood.
Bitten by a tick. primary actions
Getting on the animal’s fur, the parasite looks for a place for a bite, it takes up to 2 hours for this. Weak spots: withers, neck, chin, eyes, ears, groin, armpits, inner thighs.
Before penetrating under the skin, he conducts “anesthesia”, and the dog does not feel pain from the bite. Then he gnaws a tiny hole and begins to screw into it clockwise and hardens in the wound. After drinking blood, it increases in size and looks like a huge papilloma, digests food and injects the digested “waste” containing the virus into the victim’s body.
If you find a sucking parasite, do not panic. Remove the “vampire” immediately and disinfect the bite site with an alcohol solution. Next, observe the condition of the dog and do not leave him unattended for a minute.
Not every tick bite is dangerous. The chance of infection is low. According to statistics, it is 6-14%.
Do not kill the parasite if possible. Take it for lab testing. As a result of analyzes, it is possible to determine whether he is a carrier of infection. In the event of a negative result, there is no cause for concern. If, as a result of removal, part of the insect remains in the body of the animal, try to remove it with a sterile needle.
The answer to the question of whether animals suffer from encephalitis is still controversial. It is possible that encephalitis may be a consequence of piroplasmosis. Veterinarians. this disease is not isolated separately and methods of its treatment, for today, are absent. The death of the patient occurs in a short time. In this case, euthanasia (lulling) is performed.
How to remove a tick at home
You can extract the “vampire” yourself. Unscrew it counterclockwise like a bolt. The capture is made as close to the victim’s body as possible.
It is extremely important not to tear the body of the insect from the proboscis and mouth apparatus. Do not pull or try to pull out the tick with a sharp jerk, in this case, parts of the insect will remain in the body. This will lead to inflammation, suppuration and abscess.
1 tip. pharmacy tweezers
You can use special tweezers (sold at the pharmacy). They have bent ends and allow you to unscrew the insect with high quality, without breaking.
2 tip. tweezers
Take the space tweezers and work with it like a pharmacy tweezers. The tweezers have a different configuration and, with awkward movement, they can tear the body of the parasite from the mouth.
3 tip. “Lasso” from a strong thread
Take a strong, silky thread and form a lasso loop in the center. Throw it over the bloodsucker and fix it. Then pull the left and right ends of the thread alternately, thereby loosening the insect.
4 tip. manual removal
The parasite can be removed with a finger grip. Grab the insect’s body firmly with your thumb and forefinger and twist it in 2-3 turns.
5 tip. syringe
Buy an insulin syringe and cut the tip with a knife. Apply the cut-off syringe to the “vampire” and, pulling back the plunger, try to reach the insect. The method is suitable if it has not yet managed to penetrate deeply into the skin.
All operations must be carried out with gloves and ensure that parts and insides of the removed pest do not get on the skin and mucous membranes.
Currently, there are two vaccines in the Russian Federation designed to protect pets from tick-borne piroplasmosis: Pirodog, Nobivak Piro.
Vaccines are aimed at the formation of weak immunity to resist the disease. To consolidate the result, injections are injected twice with an interval of 14 days. Vaccines last 6 months. The principle of their action to help a milder course of the disease, in case of infection.
Encephalitis mites. a little biology
The tick is a parasitic insect, small, arachnid, has 8 legs. Females are larger than males. The head is missing. The oral apparatus is 1 mm, is an extension of the trunk. When they are full, they fall away naturally. They are carriers of dangerous infections:
Veterinarians define pyroplasmosis as tick-borne encephalitis. Pyroplasmas (protozoa viral organisms) enter the bloodstream with insect saliva.
Ticks are capable of mutating and adapting to chemicals. Often the means used have a short duration of action or a weak protection character.
The dog was bitten by a tick. What to do?
Spring is green grass, good weather, we spend more time outdoors with our pets, giving them freedom and letting them off the leash. Being in nature for pets is not only pleasant moments, but also hidden dangers. And you need to be ready for anything. The long-awaited spring is followed by small and big problems that dog owners have to face while walking. And now I would like to draw your attention to the warnings about small, but sometimes very dangerous insects. ticks. This is especially important for inexperienced dog owners, whose pet meets spring for the first time in its life, to actively get acquainted with the surrounding spring environment and awakened nature.
If this is the first spring for your pet, first of all introduce him to the street and nature. You should not immediately let the dog off the leash and let everything take its course, they say, “the animal knows what is possible and what is not.” At first, go out with him on the grass, play on a leash, control his every step and action. Since at first he will be guided by curiosity and instincts, you need to show what can and cannot be done. This should be approached in the same way as teaching the dog commands, that is, you need to teach the dog to behave in nature. It’s like walking with children, you need to look at the pet in both eyes, so that you can prevent its mistake in time, so that a fun pastime does not turn into a tragedy.
What is a tick
Ticks are bugs from the arachnid class. There are so many of them that they are considered the largest group in their class. They are microscopic, and can also reach a size of more than 1 cm. The ticks, which we will now discuss, belong to the ixodid family. These beetles do not live on the body of dogs, other animals and people, but only temporarily parasitize, feeding on blood.
Ixodid ticks are large enough to be seen with the naked eye. The size of males is 2-3 mm; females can reach 10 mm or more. Ticks live from 2 to 4 years depending on the region.
Ticks live in shady, humid places. Most often found in the forest, in the park and garden, in the fields and meadows. And also they can be found in urban areas overgrown with bushes. In short, ticks are everywhere.
Some species of ixodid ticks are disease vectors. And the most common disease in dogs, the pathogens of which are transmitted by ticks. piroplasmosis.
There is a high probability that your pet may be attacked by a tick, which is a carrier of pyroplasmosis. Piroplasm (Piroplasma canis) can enter the bloodstream of a dog when bitten by ticks. For several days (sometimes up to 2 weeks), pyroplasm actively multiplies in the pet’s blood, affecting the hematopoietic organs and erythrocytes. And a moment comes when your pet’s body is no longer able to compensate for the loss, and the waste products of pyroplasm cause intoxication. After the dog has been bitten by a piroplasmic tick, the following symptoms are observed:
- Loss of appetite (refusing breakfast);
- Increase in body temperature (up to 40 ° C or more);
- Urine reddish brown, or dark beer color;
- Weakness of the hind limbs;
- Possibly vomiting, diarrhea.
If you observe the above symptoms in your pet, contact your veterinarian immediately. By ignoring or not keeping track of the condition and well-being of the dog, you risk losing it.
There are cases of dogs recovering without the intervention of a veterinarian. After that, immunity is developed, and the pet no longer shows symptoms of the disease. In this case, it can be a carrier of piroplasmosis and infect other ticks. But, not all dogs can withstand the disease, especially you should not take risks with breeds that are strongly deviated from the natural form. the wolf. Therefore, do not be surprised that wild animals in the forest, yard dogs and even guard dogs that live year-round in the yard in an aviary or on a chain do not suffer from piroplasmosis, and your Pekingese, Shih Tzu or Yorkie lies under a dropper for the second time in a row.
I really liked the article on this subject “On the problems of treatment of piroplasmosis” from the German Great Dane Kennel “Classic Dog” For me, she became the first sign and the basis for more in-depth reflections on this matter.
Tip: Always watch your dog’s tail. If during a walk, the tail is not active for a long time, it is worth examining the pet’s health in more detail. Most likely your dog is thirsty, give him a drink of water while walking. But, if she refused water and continues to mope, the problem should be considered deeper. It is possible that your pet has pyroplasmosis. You should especially pay attention to this if the dog refused breakfast (even his most beloved delicacy). then you definitely should urgently take to the doctor and do a blood test.
Piroplasmosis is not transmitted to humans. But, there are rare cases.
When ticks are dangerous
- March. May;
- Aug. Sept.
In summer, at the peak of heat, the activity of ticks decreases, and in winter they sleep. In March, as soon as the sun begins to warm up, the air becomes humid and smells like spring, ticks wake up hungry and begin their hunt for animals, also sparing no dogs and people.
In autumn, after the exhausting heat, the second season of active hunting for warm-blooded ticks begins. It is during these periods: March-May, August-September, you should more carefully monitor your pet, take all the necessary measures to protect it from tick bites.
How to protect your dog from ticks
To protect the dog from ticks, special drops should be applied to the withers (along the back). For a certain time (on average 1 month), these agents scare away ticks. Flea and tick collars are very popular. They can be a good addition to your basic remedies. But, not as a basic defense. Collars are designed for an average of 6-7 months of use. There are also sprays that should be applied directly to the animal’s coat. Spray your pet with a spray on average once a week, as well as the day before walking in densely vegetated places. All these remedies for ticks (and other insects) are called acaricidal drugs. They should be used regularly, as no acaricidal agent will provide complete protection for your pet for more than 4 weeks.
After each walk, and possibly during a long walk, the dog should be examined in order to detect the tick in time. After getting on the dog’s body, the tick looks for a secluded spot for itself within 15-20 minutes. Therefore, perhaps you can just have time to shake off the bugs from the surface of the dog’s fur.
What to do if a dog is bitten by a tick
If a dog is bitten by a tick, it can stay on the animal’s body for up to 10 days. Areas on the dog’s body that are most exposed to tick bites:
- The area behind the ears;
- Elbow area.
During the bite, the tick secretes saliva, due to which blood clotting is prevented. Also, tick saliva acts as anesthesia for the animal, so the dog may not feel pain when an insect bites.
If you find a tick on your dog, it should be removed. You can contact your veterinarian, or you can do it yourself:
- Liberally lubricate the tick and the area around it with vegetable oil (you can use Vaseline);
- With tweezers, pinch the body of the bug and pull it up in a slow circular motion;
- After removing the tick, lubricate the damaged skin of the dog with an antiseptic;
- Destroy the tick. Best to burn.
The entire mite should be removed from the dog’s skin. There are times when, due to the awkward removal of the tick, the body comes off, and the head remains in the skin. In this case, you should consult a doctor for help, since it is very difficult to remove the remains of the beetle yourself.
After removing the tick, monitor your dog’s health and mood. After all, the tick could be a carrier of pyroplasm.
Veterinarian commentary: Victoria Shestakovskaya Veterinary medicine specialist, head physician of the Healthy Animals Club
The best treatment. This is prevention and tick bites are no exception. Tablet formulations work best, which protect against both fleas and ticks. And do not think that ticks can bite only in the warm season. In the fall, ticks are also extremely aggressive and they actively try to get to your dog. So the best option would be year-round treatment of the dog from ectoparasites.
It is impossible to refuse dogs to walk in the fresh air, they need freedom, they love to run, chase cats, flirt with other dogs. If the weather is good, the dog is taken to the forest, park, to the river, to the sea, because there you can run until the paws fall off, without fear of a skirmish with fearful passers-by. Sun, wind, silky grass and. dog ticks!
They can ruin the experience of a picnic for the whole family, and if you do not take action in time, do not help the dog, the country weekend may be the last for her. What’s so terrible about ticks?
First, a little theory.
How to understand that a tick has stuck to a dog?
Most doctors say that there are practically no obvious signs of a dog bite by a tick, especially if the insect was without “surprises”.
ADVICE FROM EXPERIENCED DOGS
Examine animals carefully after walking during the period of bloodsucking activity. from August to October and from March to May. Favorite places of ticks on a dog: head, neck, chest, groin. see the picture.
If you notice that the dog, during or after a walk, began to scratch more often, or somehow anxiously licks those places that it usually does not pay attention to, be sure to examine it.
The tick does not stick to the dog right away: for 2-3 hours it can look for a more comfortable place, about the same amount it attaches and fixes the proboscis, and only then it sticks. That is, if you walk with the dog for a long time, it is worth periodically, for example, every two hours to examine it in order to shake off the bloodsuckers in time.
Why a tick in a dog is dangerous?
Ticks do not live on animals permanently like fleas, but use their “hosts” for reproduction and feeding. At the same time, they carry bacterial, viral infections, parasitic diseases. One of them, the most common one, is Piroplasma canis or piroplasmosis, the pathogens of which are carried by ixodid ticks. Piroplasmosis destroys red blood cells, leads to oxygen starvation, anemia, inflammation, damage to internal organs and death of the animal.
All this can be avoided by helping the dog in time, in the first hours after the detection of the tick.
What to do if a dog is bitten by a tick ?! Tips that can save your pet’s life
The tick is eliminated, but it’s too early to relax
The first 3-4 days and another 10 days after the bite, the dog should be observed. The following symptoms after a tick bite in a dog should alert and raise suspicions of infection:
- The body temperature increased to 40-42 ℃ if it is medium or large, or to 39. 39.5 ℃ if it is small.
- A dog with a good appetite has become indifferent to food.
- The animal has become less active, has noticeably lost interest in walking and playing.
- Darkened urine.
- The mucous membranes and whites of the eyes turned yellow.
What to do when everything happened or how to remove a tick from a dog?
Even despite the prevention and frequent examinations of the dog while walking, the tick can bite it. If this happens, quickly begin to follow the instructions:
- Kill the tick. Veterinarians advise pulling out the tick dead; to neutralize it, you need to fill it with vegetable oil or alcohol. It may take 20 minutes in total.
- While the oil or alcohol is in effect, prepare a fireproof container for the insect and tools: gloves, a surgical clamp, or curved medical tweezers. It’s good to have such tools in the house just in case, but if not, ordinary cosmetic tweezers or any clamp will do. If there are no gloves, hands should be treated with an antiseptic or simply washed well with soap. before and after the procedure.
- Make sure that the tick is dead (when trying to pull it out, it will not move its legs), grab it with a tool as close to the bite site as possible, gently clamp its proboscis, turn it counterclockwise and at the same time, gently pull it up. Usually, 1-4 turns are enough to get the tick from the dog’s skin.
- Treat the edges of the bite wound with an antiseptic.
- Place the tick in the prepared container, close it with a lid. It is worth keeping the tick in order to conduct its laboratory study. If you do not plan to do this, burn the insect. without removing it from the jar, under a closed lid.
It is not recommended to press, tear and pull out the tick sharply. Parts of it can remain in the skin, which can prolong the healing process or cause inflammation.
ADVICE FROM EXPERIENCED DOGS
If you do not have gloves, you can wrap your fingers with antiseptic-treated gauze or bandage. If there is no available means to remove the tick, and your fingers do not work, try using a thread: put a loop on the insect, tighten it around the proboscis and, slowly swinging it, pull it up until it comes out.
Should I donate a tick and dog’s blood for diagnosis??
The analysis of a dog tick for the presence of pathogens in it takes at least 3 days. If something unpleasant happens and the dog does become infected, the symptoms are likely to appear earlier. For the sake of a long-term perspective, given that general observation of an animal lasts at least 2 weeks, it is worth taking a tick for analysis. at least for your own peace of mind.
Blood is taken from the dog’s ears for analysis. It is checked, on average, the same 3 days, therefore, when thinking about the analysis, you need to proceed from the considerations given above.
It is possible that clinics in your city carry out express diagnostics of ticks and blood. In this case, the determining factors will be only the physical ability to go to the laboratory and money.
There are effective remedies for protecting dogs from ticks, but even if you use them, do not forget and do not be lazy to examine your pets after a walk. In the case of ticks, extra foresight does not hurt.