Dogs are very susceptible to tick bites and tickborne diseases. Vaccines are not available for most of the tickborne diseases that dogs can get, and they don’t keep the dogs from bringing ticks into your home. For these reasons, it’s important to use a flea & tick preventive product on your dog.
Tick bites on dogs may be hard to detect. Signs of a tick borne disease may not appear for 7-21 days or longer after a tick bite, so watch your dog closely for changes in behavior or appetite if you suspect that your pet has been bitten by a tick.
Check Your Dog for Fleas and & Ticks Regularly
One of the best ways to stop a flea or tick infestation in its tracks is by catching the problem early. If your dog has a tendency to roam through tall grass or heavy brush, periodically check them for ticks, focusing on the neck, head, ears, feet and between the toes.
Keep in mind that tick bites are hard to detect once the tick has left your dog. These bites often don’t itch, so unless you see the tick, you probably won’t know your dog has been bitten. Checking for ticks once a day, or even multiple times a day in high-risk areas, will increase your chances of finding a tick while it’s still on your dog.
Treat Your Yard for Ticks
Look for places in your yard that may be harboring ticks. Overgrown bushes and patches of tall grass can be tick hot spots, so help remove the threat by mowing, weeding or trimming. Next, use an outdoor tick spray throughout your yard to remove ticks and reduce the number that could end up on your pet.
When is tick season?
While ticks are prevalent throughout North America, and year-round tick prevention is recommended, the time of year they are most problematic varies from region to region. Ask your veterinarian when tick season occurs in your neck of the woods. This will be the time of year to be most vigilant with tick control measures.
In New Jersey ticks will likely start showing up at the end of spring and the beginning to mid-summer. During May, June, and July, ticks can be at their worst in your area. When ticks are at their worst, they not only affect humans but your pets as well. Tick season usually ends once the weather starts to get cooler at the end of summer. However, it is still possible to find ticks during the fall and winter if you live in an area with lots of trees and shrubs. This article from NJ Pest Control explains tick season more in-depth for New Jersey.
How Does My Dog Pick Up Fleas And Ticks?
Fleas and ticks are a source of annoyance and potential health threat in every part of the country. While the seasons will affect the activity of these insects, it is possible to pick up fleas or ticks during most of the year. This is especially true because these insects can thrive in our houses. Dogs and cats which spend time outdoors are at equal risk of picking up fleas. However, because dogs spend a larger amount of time outdoors, they are at a higher risk than cats for ticks. Fleas and ticks can also enter homes from visiting pets and on people’s clothes.
How Does My Dog And Home Become Infested?
Your dog is both the home and food source for fleas and ticks. Once a flea gets on your dog, it will remain there until it is killed by a flea product or dies naturally. Just like adult fleas, the adult ticks will remain on your dog and eventually produce eggs while feeding from your dog. Ticks however, go through various life stages. Ticks transmit the most disease to dogs and humans in the nymph and adult stages. If your dog is not on a preventative or adulticide (product to kill fleas and ticks), it is possible for dog and possibly your home to develop a serious infestation within just a few short weeks.
Tick Prevention for Dogs
There are many preventative tick products on the market such collars, chewables, and topical treatments. We are not veterinarians, we highly recommend talking to your dogs veterinarian for the best plan to prevent fleas and ticks.
Talk to your veterinarian about:
- The best flea & tick prevention products for your dog
- Tickborne diseases in your area