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Ticks: Detecting Dog Silent Killers

Did you know that ticks can cause a dog’s death? Ticks are an example of an external parasite, parasitic bloodsuckers that can harm both humans and animals. Ticks gorge themselves once they’ve clung to a host. Ticks can spread a wide range of illnesses while they feed, including Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, Q fever, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Ticks can injure their hosts when they emit toxins. Death can result from severe tick infestation. All 800 different types of ticks are hematophagous. In other words, they consume the blood of the host organism they have parasitized.

Ticks can spread a variety of diseases to dogs. An early diagnosis of these illnesses may indicate a favorable prognosis because the tick may not have transmitted infections yet. On the other hand, failure to discover quickly may result in death.

The most dangerous diseases that ticks can spread

On dogs, there are various tick species. Depending on its type, it can give dogs lethal tick paralysis or other dangerous and possibly fatal infections. A tick bite could, at the least, irritate the area on your dog where it is attached.

  • Canine borreliosis

Also referred to as Lyme disease, it is a pathology brought on by a bacterium that primarily causes joint problems and fever. Kidney involvement and cardiac muscle inflammation are symptoms of the disease’s later stages, which can be fatal.

  • Hepatozoonosis

The protozoan Hepatozoon canis is the culprit behind the condition known as hepatozoonosis. It mainly affects Elderly dogs, young dogs, and dogs with weakened immune systems; the Rhipicephalus sanguineus tick is the common carrier of this illness.

  • Babesiosis

It is a parasite disease that primarily affects dogs and is brought on by protozoa in the genus Babesia. Fever, weakness, weight loss, restlessness, and severe anemia are the most common signs of babesiosis. It can result in death if not handled promptly.

When dogs haven’t eaten, ticks are typically the size of an apple seed and might vary in color depending on the species. Ticks get “engorged” once they connect to the skin and consume their host’s blood. They can grow to the size of your small fingernail when this occurs. Since ticks don’t all have the same appearance and change throughout their life cycle, it’s best to ask your veterinarian if you’re unsure if you have a tick. Only recently, attached ticks (a few days to an hour) have a flat appearance. Due to the blood, they have ingested, ticks that have remained on an animal for days appear significantly more rounded.

Depending on the type of tick implicated, there may be several indications and symptoms that a dog has ticks. The presence of the parasite and the appearance of tick bite marks on the dog is the main point for diagnosis.

The signs of a brown dog tick can include skin rashes or anemia. However, paralysis tick symptoms in dogs can consist of one or more of the following symptoms (it typically takes three days or more after a paralysis tick attaches before symptoms appear): a loss of coordination in the hind legs that can lead to paralysis; apparent changes in the dogs’ bark; possible vomiting after a tick bite; retching, coughing, or losing appetite; labored breathing or rapid breathing; you may notice your dog is lethargic after a tick bite.

Preventive measures

The most efficient strategy to reduce exposure is to keep animals out of tick-prone regions. Ticks typically inhabit specific microhabitats like long grass or the transition zone between lawns and woodland areas. Tick populations decrease when these microhabitats get destroyed. Trimming plants, getting rid of weeds, and long grass can all assist in keeping your animal safe. Insecticides can slightly reduce the risk of ticks. However, due to environmental degradation and the expense of treating large regions, it is not advised for widespread use.

The primary tick species that affect dogs can be repelled by simple devices (pipettes or collars). If used appropriately, these chemicals, which include very efficient acaricides and insecticides, are not dangerous to our pets. Additionally, they come in various dosages based on the dog’s weight.