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Parasite Prevention from Ticks from Our Veterinarian in Leonardtown

In addition to fleas, ticks represent the most common parasite impacting the health of dogs and cats. Deer ticks and brown dog ticks thrive in Maryland's woods, feeding on the blood of nondomesticated animals like deer, raccoons, mice, rabbits and foxes. Ticks also live tall grasses, areas overgrown with weeds and shrub thickets.

Two dogs sitting on a trail in Leonardtown, MD.

Posing a serious health concern to animals and humans, deer ticks transmit anaplasmosis and Lyme disease to pets. Brown dog ticks carry three types of infectious disease--ehrlichiosis, babesiosis, and hepatozoonosis. All of these tick-borne illnesses may cause fever, muscle/joint aches, headaches, nausea, and fatigue. Some, like Lyme disease, target the nervous and cardiovascular system, producing long-lasting, incurable medical consequences. Your veterinarian near Leonardtown strongly urges pet owners to practice parasite prevention to prevent dogs and cats from suffering tick-borne diseases.

Recognizing Deer Ticks and Brown Dog Ticks

Deer ticks are brownish orange when they are not feeding but present dark abdomens when they are engorged with blood. They may appear dark green or bluish-gray while still attached to your pet. Brown dog ticks have a slight red tinge to their flattened bodies. They also turn an olive or bluish-gray color when engorged. Since it is difficult to distinguish one type of tick from another, your veterinarian suggests bringing your pet to our animal hospital if you find a tick on your dog or cat. He can then removes the tick properly, determine what kind of tick it is and provide a pet wellness exam to ensure your pet is healthy.

Parasite Prevention Methods for Ticks

  • Once-a-month topical - for tick prevention contain insecticides that do not harm pets but kill ticks as soon as they attach themselves and start feeding on your pet. Just apply one or two drops to the back of your pet's neck one time each month and your pet will remain safe from contracting tick-borne diseases.
  • Flea and tick collars - are also available that stop parasite infestations. When fitting a collar on your pet, may sure you can easily slip two fingers between your pet's neck and the collar. Cut off excess portions of the collar so your pet isn't tempted to chew or lick it. Be aware that flea and tick collars lose some of their effectiveness if they get wet.
  • Tick shampoos - rises and dips kill ticks attached to pets but work only one time. If you give your pet a tick dip or shampoo, you will need to use once-a-month topical or parasite prevention collars to continue protecting your pet against ticks.
  • Once a month pills - for killing fleas and ticks are also available for dogs with sensitive skin. If topical or collars irritate your dog's skin. Ask your veterinarian near Leonardtown about tick prevention pills for dogs.

Contact Our Veterinarian in Leonardtown for More Information Today!

For more information about ticks and tick-borne diseases or to schedule a pet wellness exam, please call our animal hospital today at (301) 475-7808.