It’s Springtime, and the tick season is taking off again!!
Along the eastern seaboard of Australia, in bushy shrubby areas with native wildlife, the paralysis tick can be found. The paralysis tick is potentially deadly to our pets, and – even though around all year long – is most active in spring and summer.
They can be more active especially when conditions are warm and humid – such as are occurring in our area at this moment.
After attaching to the host, it takes about 72 hours for the tick to become toxic. The toxins paralyse all muscle tissues in the body, from skeletal muscles to breathing and swallowing muscles, heart muscles, bladder muscles etc.
Tick paralysis symptoms include:
- Weak, wobbly legs
- Changes in bark or meow
- Swallowing problems
- Breathing problems, or worse.
For more information on symptoms and treatments of tick paralysis, click here.
Paralysis Tick Treatment
In the last few years, exciting new products have come onto the market for the control of paralysis ticks. These new products are longer lasting than the older spot-on products, which makes ongoing protection easier and more cost-effective than before. Most of the newer products will last monthly for fleas AND ticks, one product will last 3-months when given by mouth, and 6-months for dogs when applied as a spot-on.
A new product has also recently come onto the market for cats. It is a spot- on product which protects against fleas and ticks for three months.
Apart from the use of products to kill the paralysis ticks, a daily tick search is still crucial, so ticks can be found early before tick paralysis occurs. Look for them, not with your eyes, but run your fingers throughout their coat systematically, not forgetting areas such as lips, inside ears etc. If you feel anything lumpy the size of a pinhead to large pea, part the hairs to sight what this lump is. If a tick has is found, remove it straight away, ideally with a tick hook, pulled out with a twisting motion, or at least with tweezers (or fingers) as close as possible to the pet’s skin.
By using a good flea and tick control, and doing daily tick searches, nowadays, the chances of getting tick paralysis are very slim indeed.😊
Any concerns or questions, please don’t hesitate to contact our friendly staff at Cronulla Veterinary Clinic.