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Dog Fleas and Ticks

Fleas and ticks are a regular annoyance for pet parents, and fleas can be incredibly difficult to get rid of once they have taken up residence in a home. There are a wide variety of flea and tick products on the market. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian to work out the best option for you.

How can you tell if your dog has fleas & ticks?

It is relatively easy to determine if your dog has fleas. You may see them running across the tummy when you are giving him a belly rub, or you may notice little specks of what looks like dirt in the thinner or lighter parts of the coat. Itchiness is another common symptom associated with fleas, but other things can also cause itchiness, such as allergies. If you are having a tough time telling, you can use a device called a flea comb. Simply brush it through your dog’s fur to see if any fleas or flea dirt is picked up on the teeth of the comb. Ticks can be slightly harder to see, as they can often look like a growth on the skin. One may not notice the presence of a tick unless he/she directly runs a hand over it while giving their pet some attention.

How do you prevent fleas & ticks in dogs?

In cases of fleas and ticks, prevention is the key to success.There are a wide variety of prevention and treatment options available. Medications can come as tablets, chewable treats, or a liquid that is applied to the skin on the back of the neck. Different medications also have different effects. Some last longer or act faster than others. Some may kill fleas only, or fleas and ticks, or treat fleas and worms. Your veterinarian will choose from among this large selection to find the medication that is right for your dog’s situation.

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Tips for Tick Identification

If you find a tick on your dog, it’s important to remove it right away. If it is feeding or an engorged tick it will have its mouth parts buried in the skin. To remove it use a tick twisters or tweezers to grasp the tick close to the skin and pull it out. Always check to make sure you’ve removed the entire tick – including the head.

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