What Risks Do Ticks Pose to Dogs?


What Risks Do Ticks Pose to Dogs?

You care deeply about your canine friend and want to keep them safe, healthy, and happy. You feed them well, take them to the vet, and avoid harmful substances. But what about ticks? These tiny bloodsuckers can cause serious diseases for your dog. You should be aware of the following.



What Are Ticks, and Why Are They Bad?


Ticks are tiny bugs that suck blood from animals. They live in woods, fields, and near water. They can give diseases to dogs through their bites. Some of these diseases are:



Lyme Disease


This infection caused by bacteria damages dogs' joints, kidneys, hearts, and nerves. Dogs with this infection may have a fever, difficulty walking, swollen glands, lack of appetite, and kidney failure.





This is another bacterial infection that can affect dogs' blood cells and organs. Fever, weight loss, nosebleeds, anemia, and an enlarged spleen are among the symptoms.



Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever


This tick-borne illness caused by rickettsia bacteria can affect dogs' blood vessels and tissues. Fever, rash, joint discomfort, vomiting, diarrhea, and neurological issues are among the symptoms.





White blood cells and platelets in canines are susceptible to this disease, caused by the bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Fever, joint pain, lethargy, appetite loss, and bleeding issues are among the symptoms.



How to Check Your Dog for Ticks


Ticks can be hard to see on dogs because they hide under the fur. They usually bite areas with thin skin or less hair, like the ears, neck, armpits, groin, or feet. To check your dog for ticks, you should:


  • Examine your furry friend's body every day

  • Feel for bumps or lumps on their skin

  • Part their fur and look for black or brown spots

  • Use a comb or a tool to remove any ticks you find

  • Use alcohol or soap and water to remove the bite

  • Throw away the tick safely



How to Protect Your Dog From Ticks


Using a tick-preventive product on your dog is the best way to prevent ticks. Numerous options are available. These include collars, sprays, shampoos, spot-ons, pills, and injections. What is best for your dog? Ask your veterinarian.


Some other tips to prevent ticks are:


  • Avoid places where ticks live

  • Keep your yard clean and mowed

  • Remove any leaves or brush piles

  • Use tick repellents or barriers around your property

  • Check yourself for ticks after being outside with your dog



What to Do If Your Dog Gets Sick From a Tick Bite


Take your dog to the vet immediately if they exhibit disease symptoms following a tick bite. Your vet will check your dog and test them for diseases. They will give them the proper treatment for their condition.


To treat tick-borne diseases, veterinarians may use different medications and therapies. They might suggest anti-inflammatories to lessen pain and inflammation or antibiotics to eradicate the germs that cause infections. They may also give fluid therapy to hydrate and support the kidneys or blood transfusions to replace blood cells.






Ticks are dangerous parasites that can harm your dog. You can protect your dog by using tick-preventive products, avoiding tick habitats, checking your dog for ticks daily, and taking them to the vet if they get sick. 


For more information on ticks and pest prevention in pets, visit Highland Veterinary Clinic at our Evansville, Indiana office. Call 812-710-4300 to schedule an appointment today.