Tick and Flea Prevention
Tick paralysis kills more animals than any other disease in this area. Treatment is expensive and not always successful so prevention is the key.
Paralysis ticks maintain a constant presence in our surrounding areas all year round but are most prevalent from July to February. When these ticks attach to animals they pump toxins into their blood stream which harmfully affect various body systems and organs. When a paralysis tick is found on an animal it should be removed immediately!
Key signs that your dog or cat is being affected by a paralysis tick include;
- Not wanting to eat a meal
- Weak/Wobbly back legs progressing to being unable to stand or walk
- Change in bark or meow sound
- Breathing difficulty
If your dog or cat show any of these signs, you should contact us immediately to arrange for examination and treatment even if it is out of normal business hours. Symptoms can progress rapidly and affected animals can die within 24 hours of becoming ill, so you should bring your animal in for immediate treatment! If you remove the tick at home first, bring it in with you for us to confirm whether it is a paralysis tick.
Tick and flea prevention products recommended include:
- Bravecto – A chewable tablet that gives 3 months tick and flea protection in dogs. A spot on liquid that gives 6 months tick and flea protection for dogs and 3 months protection for cats.
- Nexgard- A chewable tablet that gives 1 months tick and flea protection for dogs (particularly good for puppies that are growing rapidly).
- Frontline Plus- A spot-on liquid that gives tick prevention for cats when applied every 2 weeks.
No form of tick prevention is 100% reliable, although Bravecto and Nexgard seem to be very effective, so we recommend using a tick prevention product all year round as well as daily tick searches of your dog.
Dogs and cats are constantly being exposed to many different worms in their environment. If they are not effectively treated with worming prevention these worms will become a burden to our animals causing intestinal upset, loss of condition, itchy bottoms and other potentially detrimental conditions.
Adult cats and dogs should be wormed every 3 months. Puppies and kittens should being wormed with an appropriate product from 2 weeks of age. They should initially be wormed every 2 weeks until 12 weeks of age, then every month until 6 months of age, then every 3 months for the rest of their lives
The main types of worms that should be treated against include:
- Roundworms (Toxocara canis, Toxascaris leonina)
- Hookworms (Ancylostoma caninum)
- Whipworm (Trichuris vulpis)
- Tapeworms (Dipylidium caninum, Taenia sp.)
Heartworm is a parasite that is transmitted via mosquitos. Once injected into an animal’s bloodstream the larvae take between 4-6 months to mature into adults before migrating into the animal’s heart. Once in the heart they affect the hearts valves and decrease its blood output. It is an extremely long and dangerous process to kill the worms once they have matured in the heart, so prevention is recommended.
Prevention methods include:
- Monthly tablet (which may be part of your intestinal worming product or not)
- Annual injection which can be given from 6 months of age.