For many of us, summer means spending time outdoors with our friends, families, and furry companions. Unfortunately, many of our favourite outdoor spaces are also home to dangerous, parasitic pests known as ticks. However, with the right tools and information, it’s easy to keep you and your dog tick free this summer.
What are Ticks?
Known for their bite and parasitic qualities, ticks are small, spider-like insects found in grassy or woodland habitats. They feed on the blood of passing mammals and their nasty bite can carry harmful diseases. Ticks are notorious for spreading Lyme Disease, so it is important that action against ticks is swift and efficient to keep humans and animals tick free.
Finding and Removing Ticks
At up to 1cm in length, you can often locate ticks by gently running your hands over your dog’s body. Abnormal, raised lumps can often be a sign of ticks, especially around the head, neck, groin, and feet. It is also important to check ears for ticks, as they can cause great irritation to the ear canal.
Removing ticks quickly and efficiently is key to keeping your dog fit and healthy. To remove a tick, twist it away from the body. It is important to ensure you do not squeeze the tick, as that could lead to it becoming stuck. As always, it is important check with your vet if you have any health concerns surrounding your dog. For more information on how to remove ticks, visit the Blue Cross Website.
Managing And Preventing Tick Bites
There are a variety of products on the market to ensure pet safety whilst exploring outside. There are a range of options to assist with manual tick removal and prevention, including spot-on medications, collars, and sprays. Many of these can be picked up from pet stores and supermarkets, but always consult your vet before use.
Tips For Keeping Dogs Healthy and Tick Free
- Give your dog frequent, thorough examinations for signs of ticks
- Look out for raised bumps, or signs of irritation
- If you find a tick, twist it up and away from the body, being careful not to squeeze
- To prevent tick bites in humans, wear long trousers and sleeves whilst walking through grass and woodland
- To prevent future tick bites, invest in a medicated tick-deterrent for your dog
Follow these steps to enjoy a safe and sunny summer free from ticks! Looking for some inspiration? Check out our guide to some great UK Dog Walking Destinations here.