We already know that in Southeast Georgia, heartworm prevention is a must. Flea prevention is often considered just as important because we can see how miserable these pests make our friends. What about ticks? We may rarely see them and we just pull them off and keep going. We may see a little red bump, but that too usually heals. So what is the risk of not using tick preventative?
First, ticks can carry diseases, such as Lyme disease, Ehrlichia, Rocky Mountain Spotted fever, and other blood parasites that can cause a severely sick animal. The signs typically include lethargy, weakness and joint pain. While it is true that these diseases are rarely diagnosed in our clinic, the risk may be reason enough for some people to choose a tick preventative.
Ticks can also cause paralysis. This is because some ticks can carry a toxin that when released will cause a pet to become completely paralyzed. The prognosis for this is usually good, but not always. In most cases, the tick is removed and the pet will regain use of its limbs in a day or so. Although the outcome is usually good, it is a very scary ordeal for a pet owner. This is another good reason to consider tick prevention.
Some heartworm products prevent heartworm disease and fleas. But unfortunately, currently there is no product to prevent heartworm, fleas and ticks with just one pill or solution. This means that administering tick prevention always requires the use of at least two products. This is why many pets are not protected.
As a veterinarian it is our responsibility to try to inform owners of the risks. What you do with that information is completely up to you. I can honestly say I do not push tick prevention on my clients when they tell me that they have never seen a tick on their pet. If this is truly the case, the pet may live such a sheltered life that the chance of them encountering ticks is very rare. In that situation the pet may not need tick prevention. However, if you have seen even one tick on your pet, that can enough to cause disease. The decision is up to each pet owner, but the responsibility of informing them lies on the veterinarian. Hopefully, you find this information helpful and can make an informed decision for your pet. As always, if you have questions about ticks and their diseases or prevention, contact us on facebook, the website or in person at Satilla Animal Hospital in Waycross, GA.
Monday 8:00am - 5:30pm
Tuesday 8:00am - 5:30pm
Wednesday 8:00am - 5:30pm
Thursday 8:00am - 5:30pm
Friday 8:00am - 5:30pm
Saturday 9:00am - 12:00pm
511 S City Blvd
Waycross, GA 31501
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