*** We are seeing more and more cases in this area where pets and clients have not travelled to 'tick areas' and we strongly recommend that all pets are treated to prevent ticks and searched regularly. ***
Warning: Some type of tick preventatives for dogs are potentially lethal when applied to cats. Always seek veterinary advice about the best tick preventatives for your pets.
The main tick of concern for pet owners is the Paralysis Tick (Ixodes holocyclus) as it can cause paralysis and death within 2-4 days of attachment. Whilst Paralysis Ticks occur naturally only in certain geographic areas (mainly along the coastal eastern seaboard of Australia) they can attach to pets who visit these areas during the warmer months, particularly if they are allowed to run through scrub. Ticks may also hitch a ride back with you or a neighbour in cars, rugs, towels or plants.
If you notice a tick on a pet that is not displaying signs of tick paralysis, remove the tick straight away.To do this, grasp the tick firmly where it attaches to your pet’s skin and give a quick sideways pull. It is better not to try and kill the tick first as the dying tick may inject more of its potent toxin into your pet. If you are not confident removing the tick please call us immediately to make an appointment to have it removed. Once the tick is removed your pet should be kept cool and quiet whilst being closely monitored for 24 hours. If your pet starts to display any signs of tick paralysis, such as vomiting, weakness, staggering, breathing difficulty, or altered bark, seek immediate veterinary attention as this is a genuine veterinary emergency. Do not offer food or water as these may cause aspiration in tick-affected pets.
Treatment of tick paralysis includes searching for and removing all ticks. This may include clipping the animal completely and/or the use of medication to kill remaining ticks. Tick antiserum is administered to counteract the toxin and supportive care is provided during recovery. This can be costly in comparison to what it would cost to use tick prevention initially.
Tick preventions, such as NexGard, Bravecto Frontline Plus and Scalibor 3 Month Collar are available for use in dogs and should be used according to their label to prevent ticks. NEW! NexGard and Bravecto are new chewable flea and tick prevention products.
Find out more about them on our Flea control page.
Frontline Spray is the only product currently registered for tick prevention in cats. Here is a video demonsrating how to apply it on a dog, but method is similar for cats.
However, no tick prevention is 100% effective and should always be used in combination with daily searches of your pet. Searching your pet shouldn’t cease once you return from tick-affected regions but should continue for at least 7 days after returning home. Use your fingers to feel over the entire body, especially under the collar, on the face and around the front of your pet. Don’t forget to check carefully between the toes, under the lips and in the ears.
We are more than happy to show you how to do a thorough tick search, please call us to discuss.
How to use a Scalibor Tick Collar:
Scalibor exerts best effect for the control of ticks 2-3 weeks after application. Therefore, it is important to apply the collar 2-3 weeks before travelling to tick areas.
Buckle the collar comfortably around the neck of your dog so 2 or 3 fingers can be inserted easily between the collar and your dogs neck. Trim off any length of excess collar 5cm from the buckle and dispose of as per instructions in product leaflet.