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Fall Ticks

September 4, 2014

Brought to you by Peterborough West Animal Hospital:

Fall means an increase in the pesky pests!

Beautiful fall days are meant to be enjoyed – go ahead take your dog out and enjoy the great outdoors.

Remember though, your dog isn’t the only one who’s happy to be out in the cooler weather. Cooler weather means tick numbers are on the rise. Fortunately you can help protect your pup from the ticks and Lyme disease that they can spread.

Vaccinations: If you pet is going to be in an area where ticks are endemic, there is a vaccine to prevent your dog from contracting Lyme disease. Discuss this with our veterinarians. Lyme disease is not the only disease ticks can carry.

Tick Repellant Products: Because ticks can host a variety of diseases, your pup requires protection. At Peterborough West Animal Hospital we can help you with choosing the proper tick protection product. Because of potential of adverse interactions, please consult us before applying any product to your pet. It is crucial to note that the dog tick repellants must never to be applied to cats – they are toxic to them!

Careful Monitoring: The final step in protecting your family (furry and other) is checking your dog regularly. If you do find a tick, remove it and bring it to us for identification. Peterborough West Animal Hospital carries the “Tick Twister” that is designed to remove ticks – even those that are already attached to your pet – carefully and as hygienically as possible.

Tick Twister Method


Plain Tweezer Method

Our Advice on Fall Ticks

Why is there an increase in tick numbers during the fall season?

The increase in tick numbers during the fall season is mainly due to the lifecycle of ticks and environmental conditions. Many tick species reach peak activity in cooler weather, as it’s an ideal time for them to seek hosts for feeding before the winter. Fall leaves and moist autumn conditions create a perfect habitat for ticks to thrive and reproduce. Also, many animals and pets are still active outdoors during this time, providing ample opportunities for ticks to find hosts. Awareness and preventive measures are essential during this season to protect pets from tick-borne diseases.

What are the risks associated with ticks in cooler weather?

In cooler weather, the risks associated with ticks include transmitting various diseases to pets and humans. Ticks remain active and can carry illnesses like Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and ehrlichiosis. As pets continue to spend time outdoors in the fall, they are at increased risk of tick bites and subsequent infections. Ticks can be more prevalent in wooded and grassy areas during this time, making it essential for pet owners to use preventative measures, regularly check their pets for ticks, and seek prompt veterinary care if ticks are found or symptoms of tick-borne diseases appear.

Is there a vaccine available to protect dogs from Lyme disease?

Yes, there is a vaccine available to protect dogs from Lyme disease. This vaccine helps prevent infection from the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, which is transmitted through tick bites. It’s particularly recommended for dogs living in or traveling to areas with high tick populations and Lyme disease prevalence. However, vaccination should be part of a comprehensive tick prevention strategy, which includes regular tick checks and tick preventatives. It’s essential to consult a veterinarian to determine if the Lyme disease vaccine is appropriate for a specific dog based on its lifestyle and risk exposure.

What diseases, besides Lyme disease, can ticks carry?

Besides Lyme disease, ticks can carry several other diseases that pose risks to pets and humans. These include Rocky Mountain spotted fever, which causes fever and skin lesions; ehrlichiosis, leading to fever, lethargy, and joint pain; and anaplasmosis, similar to Lyme disease in symptoms. Ticks can also transmit babesiosis, causing anemia, wea, knees, and tularemia, leading to high fever and lymph node enlargement. It’s essential to use tick preventatives and regularly check for ticks, as these diseases can be severe but are often preventable with proper care and vigilance.

How can pet owners choose the proper tick-repellent product for their dogs?

Pet owners can choose the proper tick-repellent product for their dogs by consulting with their veterinarian, who can recommend a product based on size, health, and lifestyle. It’s essential to consider the local tick species and their risks. Options include topical treatments, oral medications, and collars for tick prevention. Safety is paramount, so owners should carefully ensure the product is specifically formulated for dogs and follow the application instructions. Additionally, it’s crucial to regularly check the dog for ticks, even when using repellents, as no method is 100% effective.

Contact us, your local animal hospital in Peterborough, ON!