Spring time means tick season, here’s how to protect your furry friend

Ticks tend to appear when the weather brings warmer temperatures and rain, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH).  The little creatures can spread diseases like Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Ehrlichiosis.

To protect yourself from tick bites, you need to take preventative measures and remember to check yourself.

Flea and tick season is upon us, responsible pet owners know that their furry friends are a paradise for these insects.

Once they begin feeding on your pet’s blood they can cause a wide range of health problems, from skin infections to Lyme disease.

Here are flea and tick prevention tips from the CDC

1. Prevention is best done with veterinary-approved flea (and tick) products. Like flea and tick spray. Speak to your veterinarian to find the best, most appropriate product for your dog. There are topicals, collars, and shampoos, each made for specific needs. And in extreme conditions, try one of these sun and bug blocker overalls, which provide protection from biting insects and harmful UV rays.

2. Read the label. NEVER apply flea medication made for cats to dogs unless it says made for cats and dogs on the label.

3. Regularly check your pets and yourself for ticks after walks through the woods or grassy settings. On pets, look at the paws (and between toes), on lips, around eyes, ears (and inside ears), near the anus, and under the tail.

4. The quicker you remove a tick, the less likely your pet will contract a secondary illness related to tick bites. Learn the proper method of tick removal. Invest in a pair of fine tweezers used for this purpose. If you are unable to do so, consult with a veterinarian.

5. Keep grass mowed. Ticks can latch on to legs.

 

6. For fleas, look for them on areas of your pet where the coat is sparse or thin. Like the belly, inner sides of the hind limbs, and armpits.

7. If you own multiple pets, treat them all at the SAME time. This will help prevent cross infestation.

8. While pets are being treated, the surrounding environment must be treated at the same time. Wash or get rid of all bedding and completely vacuum the sofas and carpets. When you’re done, make sure to empty the vacuum containers.

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