Dogs are man’s best friend. They are loyal, friendly and they lift your spirits. Dogs are the most loved and desired pet for everyone. If you are like most dog owners then you just adore your little furry friend and you cannot imagine a life without him. The only thing is that sometimes your loyal friend might get problems that become very huge if left untreated. You have to detect the symptoms of your dog being unwell as early as possible to avoid any unfortunate event. We are sure you know what we are talking about. Fleas and ticks. These are the biggest problem that dog owners face regularly. Surprisingly, insects so small can create such a ruckus. These bloodsucking parasites not only make our dog feel uncomfortable but they also give us a headache if they get into our clothes, furniture or anywhere else. According to expert veterinarians, you should immediately get the best flea & tick treatment for dogs as soon as possible otherwise they will easily penetrate your defenses and infiltrate your home. The key to good treatment is time. You need to get that treatment as soon as you find out. Usually, people only find out when the infestation has become serious.
Did you know that fleas can jump almost two feet into the air? They are also notorious for sucking blood and can suck blood from a body that is about fifteen times more than their body weight. Their favorite hiding places are under the stomach. You will also find them on the head. If you don’t counter them, you might find out that they have spread to your fabrics like carpets, beddings, sofas, and other places where your dog has been. Not only harmful for dogs, but fleas are also harmful to people as they bite and leave red bumps on the skin which are painful and cause some serious itching.
Ticks are usually found in areas that are green or that have tall grass. They hide in those areas and wait for dogs to come by so that they can attach themselves. Once they are aboard your dog or even your cat, they hide hear the ears, head or around the feet. They keep sucking the blood and that causes their size to increase. They can even feed on humans if they leave the dog host and attach themselves to you. Ticks are notorious not only for the blood that they suck but also because they may be carrying diseases like Lyme disease and can transmit them to their host.
How to Spot Fleas and Ticks?
Here are some of the major signs that your dog needs tick and flea treatment right now:
Ticks come in many types but mostly they all look like apple seeds. They have a flat and oval body and eight legs that they use to scurry around the dog’s fur. Just like they have various species, they also come in different colors. The common ones are gray and some are reddish-brown even. Have you ever felt a bump on your dog’s skin as you were petting him? That was probably a tick. That is how most dog owners know that they have a tick problem. You feel a bump, you become curious and start to brush aside the hair to find out the cause and that is when you see the tick attached to your dog, feeding off him.
Unlike ticks, fleas are small bugs that are black and they don’t have wings. That is why they are much harder to find than ticks. If you have a flea problem then you might have noticed a flea jumping on your dog’s belly or maybe you have encountered a flea that was trying to jump off your dog and onto you. They move pretty fast and are very hard to catch by hand. There are various medicines that you can use to kill fleas and ticks. Just make sure that you have to kill all the fleas including the adult ones, the eggs, and the larvae.
A Sudden Itch
Dogs usually scratch themselves now and then but if you see that your dog suddenly has the urge to scratch himself and does so with an intensity and a force that you have never seen before then you can be sure that it was because of a flea bite. For example, if you are sitting with your dog on the sofa and watching your favorite TV show or if you are walking with your dog and suddenly he turns and starts biting his tail then you have a flea problem. Another thing that dogs, as well as cats, do is that they will continuously lick the area around the groin.
If the flea or the tick problem is left untreated for a long time, it can cause various health issues for your dogs. We all know that fleas suck the dog’s blood. If they are allowed to spread and grow in numbers, they can make a small dog anemic as well as physically weak. If you see your otherwise active and fit dog show signs of fatigue or if he is not eating up to his routine diet and shows pale gums then he just might be anemic. Although anemia doesn’t have a lot of signs when it is in the initial stage.
As far as ticks are concerned, their symptoms don’t show immediately and can take time. These can include vomiting, physical weakness, and unsteadiness as well as a host of other symptoms like inflammation, and partial loss of control over their muscles. These are not symptoms that should be taken lightly. If you see a tick bite or see these symptoms, get the dog to the vet immediately. If you are brushing your dog and find a tick, remove it immediately. Also, make sure that you take your dog to the vet for complete blood work to ascertain if there are any tick-borne infections or not. Another thing that you must-do if you find a tick is to use a pair of tweezers and get a hold of the tick as close to the dog’s skin as possible. Once you have the tick in your grip, pull up gently and remove it. Afterward, use some alcohol to clean the target area as well as your hands.
Flea dirt is another clue as to what is happening to your otherwise perfectly normal dog. If you see tiny speckles of black on your dog then it just might be flea dirt or flea poop. You will also find that the area where you found the flea grit looks irritated and a little red. This is because of the flea bites.
Fleas and ticks not only affect your dog but they infest your entire house as well, making it difficult to get rid of them. So, first of all, keep your dog clean so that you can prevent an outbreak. And if your dog does get fleas and/or ticks, get him to the vet immediately. It’s better to have a professional look at your dog and treat him accordingly.