How to Remove a Tick from a Dog or Cat at Home: Safe Tips

From early spring to mid-autumn, pets walking in parks are at risk of “catching” a tick. During this period, the insects are especially active and dangerous because they can be carriers of tick-borne encephalitis.

A tick in a dog – how to get it out, the first symptoms

The presence of a tick in a four-legged friend is an unpleasant situation, but the first signs are quite typical. They can appear in a week after the bite, in a month, or even in half a year:

  • deterioration of appetite;
  • lack of energy, unwillingness to play;
  • An increase in body temperature and a hot nose;
  • phlegmatic condition, lack of interest in people;
  • refusal of walks, sedentary lifestyle;
  • whining or barking for no reason;
  • pale mucous membranes and shortness of breath;
  • The dark color of urine.

All of these signs indicate that the dog has been bitten by a tick. A responsible owner should try to remove the insect from the animal’s body immediately:

  • put on rubber gloves;
  • drip oil or alcohol on the wound;
  • wait for the tick to stick its head out;
  • pull out the insect with special forceps or tweezers counterclockwise;
  • treat the wound with iodine, and treat the hair with anti-tick medication.

Make sure to save the tick and take it to the clinic for analysis. This way you can find out if the cat was infected with dangerous infections, and if the answer is yes, you can begin treatment in time.

A tick in a cat – how to get it out, the first symptoms

Cats, like dogs, are also susceptible to tick bites. Even if the cat is not in contact with other animals and is not in the street, he can still be a victim of a tick, which you bring home on your clothes.

The main signs of a pest in your fluffy cat are:

  • Drowsiness and lethargy;
  • loss of weight;
  • an increase in body temperature;
  • loss of appetite and/or refusal of food;
  • Gastrointestinal disturbances and vomiting;
  • urine with a mixture of blood;
  • irritability and aggression.

If you find a tick on your pet, it is better to immediately contact the veterinarian, because it is more difficult to remove the insect from the cat’s skin than in the case of a dog. In some cases, you can try to get the tick yourself – buy a special spatula for extracting such insects at the veterinary drugstore. There is a slot in which you need to place the head of the tick and gradually “twist” it out of the animal’s skin. Then disinfect the bite site and lubricate with wound healing ointment.

In any case, regardless of whether you have a cat or a dog, it is better to do all the necessary tests at the vet clinic to make sure that the animal is not infected and there are no health risks.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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