Facebook_off Twitter_off Pinterest Instagram_off Googleplus_off Youtube_off Emailnewsletter

Welcome to DogHeirs, Where Dogs Are Family! Log in or Sign Up

Dogheirslogo




Removing ticks safely from your dog

Dhicon_thumb By DogHeirs Team | May 20, 2012 | Comments (1)

Dog first aid: removing ticksTicks are a major problem for both dogs and humans because of the dangerous diseases they carry and transmit. Even when you take precautions, you may find a tick on your dog, typically seen as a bump or swollen area with a tick burrowed just under your dog's skin. 

Prompt and proper removal of ticks is important in preventing an attached tick from transmitting an infection to your dog. It can take between 24 and 48 hours for a burrowed tick to infect its host, so removing it quickly is critical.

If you have inspected your dog and found a tick burrowed on your dog's skin, follow these steps to remove the tick safely. Note, if the tick is too deeply burrowed into your dog's skin, or you are uncomfortable with removing the tick yourself, please take your dog to a veterinarian so it can be removed.

Learning the proper way to remove a tick is important because if the pest is removed incorrectly, this can result in the infection being "injected" into the dog's blood stream. Incorrect removal can result in:

  • The tick's mouth parts being left behind in the skin - this can result in septic abscesses and serious blood infection.
  • Compression of the tick's abdomen - can cause tick to regurgitate the blood meal, injecting infective agents to  into the blood stream of the dog
  • Puncture of the tick's body  - can cause tick to regurgitate the blood meal, injecting infective agents to  into the blood stream of the dog
  • Stress to the tick - an cause tick to regurgitate the blood meal, injecting infective agents to  into the blood stream of the dog

Do not use petroleum jelly, rubbing alcohol, oils /butter, paraffin, nail polish remover or any liquid solutions to stimulate the tick to release its grip. Do not apply a freezing agent, or burn the tick with a cigarette, lighter or match. All these methods may get a tick to release its grip, but they also stress the tick and thereby significantly increase the chances of it infecting your dog.

There are really only two safe ways to remove an attached tick: with fine-tipped (precision) tweezers or with a tick-removal tool

To begin, you will need the following items:

  • Pair of latex or rubber gloves
  • Clean pair of fine-tipped (precision) tweezers or a commercial tick remover, such as the Tick Twister
  • Antiseptic
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • small container or zip-lock bag

 

tweezers for tick removal

 

Remove the tick. Wear latex or rubber gloves while removing the tick to avoid contact with your skin. If gloves are not available, use tissue to protect your skin. Do not handle the tick with your bare hands, as you may infect yourself through breaks in your skin or through your eyes, mouth or nose. 

If using tweezers:

  1. Gently grasp the tick as close to your dog’s skin as possible. Try not to pinch your dog's skin. Be careful not to squeeze or squish the body of the tick.
  2. Pull outward in a straight, steady motion. Do not twist or jerk the tick, as this may leave the mouth parts embedded. If parts are broken off, remove any embedded mouth parts with tweezers or a sterilised needle.
  3. Make sure the entire tick is removed. 

Removing tick with tweezers

If you're using a tick remover:

  1. Gently press the remover against your dog's skin near the tick.
  2. Slide the notch of the remover under the tick.
  3. Continue sliding the remover until the tick is caught in the small end of the notch and is pulled free. (The tick will remain in the bowl of the remover.) As tick removers vary slightly in function from each other, be sure to read the instructions on packaging.

Sterlize the bite site. Clean the bite site on your dog's skin with antiseptic and make sure to clean your tweezers or tick remover with isopropyl alcohol. Dispose of your gloves and wash your hands, too!

Preserve the tick. Once it is removed, you wil want to save the tick for identification and testing purposes, in case your dog develops symptoms of an illness. If you would like to identify a tick, read our article: Identifying Ticks.

  1. Drop the tick into a small container that contains isopropyl alcohol (the alcohol will quickly kill the tick). Or, put the tick in a sealed ziplock bag (preferably with preserving agent) and store it in a freezer.
  2. Mark the date on the container.
  3. If your dog begins displaying symptoms of a tick-borne illness, your veterinarian may want to identify or test the tick.

Monitor your dog. If you are unsure when your dog may have been bitten, you may want to take your dog to a veterinarian for a check up.

Keep an eye on the bite area for infection. If your dog's skin remains irritated or infected, make an appointment with your veterinarian.

Watch your dog for symptoms of tick-borne diseases. Some symptoms include arthritis or lameness that lasts for three to four days, reluctance to move, swollen joints, fever, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, loss of appetite, and neurological problems. Read our article on Canine Lyme Disease: Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention for more information on signs of this tick-borne disease.

Learn how to identify ticks and  about Canine Lyme Disease

Last Page Prev | NextNext Page


Copyright 2014 DogHeirs. All Rights Reserved.


View more articles in: Safety and Emergency Care

You may also like

Canine Lyme Disease: Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention

Lyme disease is one of the most common tick-transmitted diseases in the world. Lyme disease is caused by a bacterium (borrelia burgdorferi) that is commonly transmitted to animal hosts by ticks. Deer ticks, Western black-legged ticks, Taiga ticks and Sheep ticks (Castor Bean ticks) are the most common vector ticks for Lyme disease. These ticks and other kinds also carry different blood-born diseases such as Rocky mountain spotted fever, anaplasmosis, canine ehrlichiosis etc. Basically, a...
Read more

Canine Ear Conditions: Symptoms, Causes and How to Clean Your Dog's Ears

Illnesses involving the ear represent one of the most common reasons that guardians take their dogs to veterinarians. Accordingly, cleaning your dog's ears regularly is a key part in keeping your dog healthy. Canine ears that are well-looked after are clean, odor-free, pale pink in color and minimal accumulation of wax. By checking your dog's ears regularly, you are also more likely to notice if there are any problems your dog may have with his/her...
Read more

Identifying Ticks

Dogs are such common victims of some tick species that the ticks have the word 'dog' in their name. Ticks carry many blood-borne diseases, transmitted when they attach to the host's skin and staying attached until they've filled their bodies with blood. When ticks first attach, they are almost impossible to find in a heavily coated dog because of their tiny size. But they swell as they become engorged with blood, and then appear to...
Read more

Veterinarians warn dog owners to start parasite prevention early

Veterinarians are warning dog owners that the mild winter and early spring could put dogs at greater risk of diseases such as heartworm and Lyme disease. To avoid the risk of infections, vets are advising dog owners to start their preventative regimines earlier and to regularly inspect and groom their dogs. Although ticks, mosquitos, fleas and other pests are around every year, this year they are out in greater force. The warmer temperatures have brought...
Read more

Garden and yard safety for your dog

Gardens and yards are wonderful places to relax with your family, including your dog. But is your yard safety-proofed for your dog? Although it's not possible to rid your yard of every potential danger, there are a few simple steps that you can take that will improve your yard's safety for your dog.Basic safety Don't leave garden tools out. Dogs can bite, or step on, rakes, hoes and trowels and other garden tools and hurt...
Read more

Comments on this Article

Tues July 24 '12 as naive as this is, may all ticks just die..... nasty little bugs .... Vancouver BC Canada
» View all comments

Add Your Comment!

Log in to leave a comment or Create an account

Must See

Questions About Safety and Emergency Care

Follow DogHeirs

Also find us on: DogHeirs on Twitter DogHeirs on Pinterest DogHeirs on Instagram DogHeirs on Google+

Copyright 2014 DogHeirs