While some types of ticks prefer birds and lizards, others will latch onto any warm-blooded creature they can find. If your furry friend has spent time in woods or fields, she may have picked up an unwanted hitchhiker.
The Risks of Ticks
- Ticks can transmit diseases. Ticks may be small, but they’re full of bacteria and viruses that can make you and your dog very sick.
- Ticks are a risk for anemia in dogs because they can cause blood loss from the tick bite itself or from the pathogens they transmit.
- Ehrlichiosis is one of the more common illnesses transmitted by ticks and is caused by infection with the Ehrlichia bacteria, which results in fever, lethargy, anorexia (loss of appetite), vomiting, diarrhea, enlarged lymph nodes (swollen glands) and other symptoms depending on which form of ehrlichiosis your dog has contracted (there are five).
- Rocky Mountain spotted fever causes high fever along with severe headache nausea vomiting swollen lymph nodes rashes muscle pain joint pain confusion seizures coma death if not treated properly!
Types of Ticks
Ticks are classified by the type of host they are found on. There are several different types of ticks and some ticks can be found on more than one type of animal. For example, the American dog tick is also called a wood tick and is often seen on dogs as well as humans. People who spend time outside will often come in contact with these ticks if they don’t take precautions to prevent it.
Another type of tick that attacks both dogs and cats is the brown dog tick or kennel tick; this parasite prefers to feed off your pet’s ears and groin area (especially during mating season). The brown dog or kennel tick is also known to hang around parks or other public places where people may let their pets roam free without supervision!
Signs a Tick Has Attached
If a tick is attached to your dog, you may be able to tell. Ticks are usually dark and hard to see, but they will appear red or dark brown when engorged with blood. As the tick feeds, it becomes larger and can cause irritation to your pet’s skin.
When and Where to Check for Ticks
After coming home from the park or playing outside, you should check your dog for ticks.
To do this, use a mirror to examine his ears and skin. Also look at any other parts of his body that are hard to see, such as near his tail or between his toes. If you find a tick on your dog, remove it as soon as possible by pulling straight upward with a pair of tweezers (not pressing down on the tick). If you don’t have tweezers, use anything else that’s thin enough to get under its head—a credit card works well!
Ticks can be a serious problem for our canine friends. The best way to protect your dog is to check them regularly, and make sure they are up-to-date on their heartworm preventative medication. If you are worried that your dog has picked up an unwanted hitchhiker, don’t hesitate to reach out to your vet immediately.