By Lindsay Curry,
Chair of the Community Council for the Kamloops and District Branch of the BCSPCA
At this time of year, you should inspect your pets regularly for ticks, especially if they have been outside in areas with woods or tall grasses. Aim to thoroughly comb your pets’ fur within four to six hours of exposure to these environments; this helps prevent ticks from attaching to and feasting on your pets.
If you find a tick, it’s important to remove it as soon as possible. The longer ticks are attached, the greater the chance of disease transmission. Do not touch the tick – wear gloves and use tweezers. Carefully grasp the exposed part of the tick’s body near your pets’ skin. Pull gently until the tick lets go. Dispose of the tick by wrapping it in several layers of tissue and flushing it down the toilet. Don’t crush, burn, or suffocate the tick; these methods can spread infectious bacteria. See your vet right away if you don’t want to remove the tick yourself.
There are insecticides and insect growth regulators for fleas that are also effective against ticks. Ask your vet for information about whether these products are suitable for your pets.
If your property has a lot of brush and long grasses, think about clearing the area where your pets spend their time. Removing leaves, lawn clippings, etc., can also help to reduce the likelihood of ticks. Keep your furry friends safe and free from ticks this season