Ticks can spread diseases to your dog. Removing the tick can increase the risks; therefore, it is important you remove the tick correctly. According to Vetinfo, transmission of Lyme disease takes about 48 hours. Infection of other tick-borne diseases--such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Colorado tick fever--may occur the first day, according to the University of California IPM Online. Treating your yard and using tick control products help decrease tick bites. Routine checks for ticks and prompt removal helps protect your dog's health.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Things you need
- Latex gloves (optional)
- Blunt tweezers
- Cloth or paper towel
- Antiseptic cleaner or iodine
- Antibiotic cream (optional)
Put a collar and leash on your dog. Have someone hold the leash or secure the leash to a door or a piece of furniture. It is important to keep the dog still so you do not lose your hold on the tick or damage it during removal.
Put on gloves to prevent risk of infection. During removal, ticks can transmit disease to any breaks in your skin. If you do not have gloves, thoroughly wash hands and apply antiseptic after you finish removing the tick from your dog.
Locate the tick. Carefully use scissors to cut the surrounding hair if necessary for obtaining a grasp on the tick. Take tweezers and carefully grasp the entire tick as close to the skin as possible. Do not squeeze the tick hard. Pull the tick gently and very slowly away from the skin in a straight motion. Pulling too fast or hard can break the body from the head and increase infection risks. Twisting or squeezing the tick can cause it to release more infected material.
Examine the tick to make sure the body has the head attached. Use the tweezers to remove the head from your dog if necessary. Place the tick in a container for identification or disposal.
Clean and rinse the area with a cloth or paper towel, water and soap. Make sure to remove any residual material from the tick bite. Apply antiseptic cleaner or iodine to the bite. Applying an antibiotic cream may help prevent infection to the site.
Clean the tweezers and apply antiseptic cleaner to remove infectious materials. Dispose of the gloves or wash your hands with soap and water, and apply antiseptic. Place the container with the tick in a cool area until you are ready to dispose of it.
Tips and warnings
- Take the tick to your veterinarian for identification if you live in area where tick-borne diseases are common or if your dog develops any symptoms indicating infection.
- According to Vetinfo, use of products to remove the tick, such as nail polish remover, pesticides or a lighted match, can cause damage to the dog's skin and increase the release of infectious material into your dog.
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