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What to Do if Your Dog Has a Tick Bite?

Tick bites not only irritate your dog’s skin, but untreated they can make your dog generally unwell and in severe cases even lead to paralysis. You will often spot a tick on your dog’s coat, as once they feed on blood they swell and become visible, though if they have unlatched your dog may itch and have a red, inflamed area of skin.

Managing a Tick Bite

If you find a tick on your dog, it is important to remove it as soon as you can. However, it is important you do so correctly, as improper removal increases the risk of pain and infection, so follow the steps here:

  • Use tweezers to grip the tick close to its base and carefully, but firmly, remove it in one go.
  • Place the tick in an alcohol solution to kill it.
  • Your dog may well have other ticks, so thoroughly check their coat and remove any other ticks you find.
  • Gently wipe the bitten areas with warm, soapy water and if the area appears red or infected, apply a small amount of antibiotic cream.

Preventing Further Tick Bites

Ticks typically favor wooded and grassy environments, so you’re likely to encounter them when out walking your dog on trails. However, you can equally find them in your own yard and they may even take up residence within your home. Insecticides are available to treat indoor and outdoor areas to remove ticks, but you can also discuss preventive tick treatments for your dog with your veterinarian.

Tick-in-a-dog#

Image by Jazzjohnn (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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