Common Vet Myths – Tick Control

The Lyme vaccine negates the use of tick prevention – In a perfect world, we would have a routine vaccine that would prevent Lyme disease 100%. However, we do not have that luxury. There is a lot of controversy surrounding the Lyme vaccine and you need to discuss with your vet to ensure you get all of the facts. At the end of the day, the Lyme vaccine does not protect your pet from all of the diseases that ticks can transmit. Using a tick control product, a tick check, and avoiding high-risk areas is still your best way to avoid transmission of diseases from ticks.

Cold weather = no ticks – We always like to think that once winter hits we don’t need to deal with those pesky parasites, however, ticks can live in temperatures above 4 degrees Celsius if sustained for more than a couple of days. This means that when we have a warm spurt in the middle of winter the ticks become active again. They are very resilient creatures.

Ticks fall from trees – We often hear that ticks fall from trees and land on our pets (or us). In fact – ticks latch onto our pets (or us) by questing from long grass. Questing is when they hang onto a tall piece of grass with their back legs and wave their front legs to grab onto the first thing that walks by.

Ticks can be removed with alcohol – As we discussed earlier – ticks are resilient creatures and are not easily removed. We often hear people say that they will use alcohol to remove ticks. This is not a truly effective way to remove a tick. You need to use a twister to ensure you remove the head. Though they can no longer transmit diseases once the body is removed, we do not want the head causing secondary skin infections.

“I’m safe from the ticks that are on my pet” – Unfortunately, when a tick comes in on your pet they can decide to hop onto you instead. Humans are more likely to contract Lyme disease from a tick than a dog or cat, so the risk is greater for you. Using a tick prevention product that kills the ticks is the best way to prevent them from latching onto you or another family member.

Written by Blair Lutes

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