Camping! Fishing! Hiking! Murphy always says a big ruff please! to outdoor adventures with his humans. He takes his job of scaring away all the squirrels and rabbits very seriously, from under the safety of his sleeping bag of course. Strap the canoe to the roof, open the windows, pass me back a Timbit, and let’s go!
We Northerners are known for our love of the outdoors, but it doesn’t always love us back. Murphy wants you to know that there are a few precautions that will keep him and his buddies safe, and ensure you don’t bring home any of nature’s unwelcome backpackers.
Murphy gets extra parasite protection during the summer months so he can enjoy his favourite season without worrying about ticks, fleas, mites, intestinal worms and other nasty creatures that would like to ruin all his fun. Prevention treatments are safe, effective, and affordable, especially compared to the cost of treating the diseases parasites cause.
Ticks and Lyme Disease
Lyme disease originated in Cape Cod, MA, and used to be endemic only to that region, but in recent years ticks have moved north into Ontario, Quebec and the Atlantic region. Vets are seeing an increase in the number of tick bites and positive cases of Lyme. As soon as the weather is above zero, ticks spring into action. May-June is peak season. You should know that you can only get Lyme by being bitten by an infected tick. If your dog contracts Lyme disease, you won’t get it from them.
You can protect yourself by staying on the trail when hiking. If bush-whacking is more your speed, wear pants and tuck your pant legs into your socks/boots to prevent an access point (Murphy can’t guarantee he won’t laugh at your outfit). Check yourself after a hike for ticks. Pay extra attention to spots where your clothes end, like your waistband, and don’t forget to check your hair. Check your pet carefully too. No clothes means many more opportunities for ticks, and dogs are much more likely to roll around in a pile of dead leaves than their humans.
If you find an attached tick, don’t panic. You can follow these steps for safe removal.
It takes about 24 hours to transmit Lyme disease. If your pet has a tick and you can’t get to a vet within 24 hours, carefully remove it. If you’re able to get to the clinic, bring your pet in and we’ll take care of it. There is a bit of an art to safe removal to ensure nothing is left behind. We’ll need to test the insect for Lyme so don’t throw it away. Pop that bad beastie into a container or baggie for us and we’ll take it from there.
Checking for ticks daily while spending time in the woods is key for preventing illness. If you miss one and your pet does get Lyme, early symptoms include fever, lethargy, lameness (like a club paw), and swollen joints. Prompt vet care is a must to prevent long-term problems.
April is the perfect time to start preventative measures for tick and parasite control. Your Barrydowne vet will tailor a treatment plan to suit your pet’s lifestyle and needs. Call us or come in to talk about options. We offer the very best protection to keep your best friend safe so you can plan that next summer adventure.