Last week I found a couple of ticks on one of my dogs – the first of the season! Unfortunately not a reason for celebration (other than that the weather maybe getting warmer?!).
I’m sure ticks must be a useful part of the food chain and nature – although i’m not entirely sure how. But whatever their purpose, they can cause a great deal of trouble for not only people but our animals too.
As my dog had had lots of walks in different places in the last week, i’m not sure where he acquired the tick, or if he’d got it that day or the day before With dogs who’re very furry like this one, it’s easy to miss ticks – so it’s a good reminder to me to not only groom my animals every day but to give them a gentle stroke and massage daily too. Spotting ticks early is a good idea, to avoid them causing significant irritation or ill-health.
So how to get rid of ticks? There are lots and I mean LOTS of ideas on how to remove them safely – but unfortunately many of them either don’t work, or can cause other issues. Remember it’s important that the whole tick is removed and no body parts are left buried in your animal’s skin.
A nifty “tick removing tool” can be purchased from most Veterinary Surgeon’s. These work by slotting around the tick, and then with a twist and pull the tick can be safely removed in tact.
There are tick treatments available – usually combined with flea treatments, that are synthetic chemicals which are applied to the skin of your pet and are reported to provide protection for up to a month from ticks. Although despite this treatment ticks will still normally attach themselves, before dropping off after a day or 2. Given how much irritation ticks can cause – ever seen a dog scratch and scratch to try and get rid of it? – horrible to see, it can be tempting to use these treatments.
But they don’t always work 100% of the time. Plus they themselves can cause irritation. The skin is a living breathing organ that needs to be gently cared for. Applying any kind of repellent needs to be considered carefully and I think using ones that are as natural and gentle as possible is essential.
If we think twice about what we eat, why not think twice about what we put on our skin?
So what options are there for natural tick control?
- Herbal supplements – e.g. Rosemary.
- Essential Oils – Lavender and Rose Geranium.
Remember that as with any treatment – complementary therapies may not be suitable for every animal, e.g. if they’re pregnant or have another existing medical condition. Plus some are better for dogs or horses or cats, but necessarily all three species of animal! So get professional Veterinary advice before using.
Like more inspiration to help your pet? Read this exciting book from leading holistic Veterinary Surgeon Chris Day “Natural Flea Control for Dogs and Cats: Notes on Ticks and Sandflies” – have a look here.
If you’d like help locating a holistic veterinary surgeon or complementary therapist for your animals, then please get in contact by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Until next time,
Director, Taranet Complementary Therapies for Animals (Business Consultancy, Social Media Training and Forever Business Owner)
Animal Health Info Online: www.taranet.co.uk
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