This disease is transmitted by the ixodes ricinus tick, incubating from 3 to 32 days in periods from May to October, causing the infected skin redness, meningitis, and chronic arthritis. This disease is detectable by blood culture and is detectable through swollen lymph nodes and swollen joints.
Ticks typically live in hot climates and are most active during the spring and summer months. For this reason, we must be very attentive to how our pets feel after long walks in the park or forest. Ticks have the ability to jump and stick to the hair and skin of our furry friends. For this reason, it is important to thoroughly check their fur once a day and pay particular attention to changes in their behavior or skin, such as redness or irritation.
If you notice a tick during the regular brushing of your pet, you should act immediately and remove it with a pair of tweezers. The less time that the tick is in contact with your dog, the less likely it is to become infected with diseases.
When removing the tick, you must be careful to ensure you remove the tick head; otherwise, your dog may develop a serious infection. If you would like extra help with this process, you can purchase special tick removal tools. After you have successfully removed the tick, you can kill it by squishing it between your fingers or stepping on it; you should hear a small crunching sound. In addition, you can also flush the tick down the toilet.
Clinical Signs Of Lyme Disease
Lyme disease, also known as borreliosis, is an infectious disease triggered by spirochete Borrelia burdogferi bacterium. It is transmitted by bites from parasites such as ticks, and when it reaches the blood, it spreads.
Once the bacterium has entered the bloodstream, it can reach different parts of the body and result in problems with specific organs and systems; this can include joints, as well as general illness and leg lameness. The disease can be transmitted after a tick has been attached to a dog for 24 to 48 hours.
Since ticks don’t fly or jump, they make contact with their host by lurking on the tips of long grass or bush, then quickly grabbing onto your dog when he walks by. The tick then crawls onto the dog’s body and looks for a place to bite and begin sucking the dog’s blood.
What are the clinical signs and symptoms of Lyme disease in dogs? If an infected tick with Lyme disease infects the dog, there are some symptoms that may be present within your furry friend. Some of these symptoms include recurrent lameness due to the inflammation of the joints within the dog. Sometimes this lameness lasts for only 3 or 4 days, and sometimes it can come back days or weeks later. In addition to lameness, another common symptom is elevated body temperature and a general feeling of malaise.
Sometimes, if the initial infection is more severe, the dog will begin to show a loss of appetite and begin to lose weight. In more severe cases, damage to the kidneys can occur as well as heart and nervous system issues. Lyme disease can sometimes also lead to glomerulonephritis, which is the inflammation and dysfunction of the kidney’s glomeruli.
If your dog does develop kidney failure as a result of Lyme’s disease, there are additional symptoms that may develop. These symptoms are a result of kidney disease, and they include vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, increased urination and thirst, and abnormal fluid buildup, which can lead to swollen limbs.
Diagnosing Lyme Disease
In order for your dog to receive proper treatment, a diagnosis is needed by a veterinary professional. You will likely need to provide your dog vet with a thorough history of your dog’s health in order to give your vet some insight into what organs may be affected within the dog.
A vet is able to diagnose Lyme disease within a dog by taking a sample of the dog’s blood and running a blood test to detect Lyme disease. If your dog is presenting other clinical signs, the vet will likely order a blood test as soon as possible to begin treatment.
The downside of the blood test is that it typically takes 4 to 6 weeks to show a positive result. Due to this, your dog’s vet will likely use a combination of diagnostic techniques to come to a correct diagnosis. Some additional tests that your dog’s vet may order are a blood chemistry test, a urinalysis test, a fecal examination test, and an x-ray to examine the dog’s internal structure.
Treatment For Lyme Disease
There is no one treatment for Lyme disease. Typically a vet will recommend a course of antibiotics that will likely last for 4 weeks or longer. If your canine companion is also experiencing a lot of pain in addition to other symptoms, your vet may also prescribe an anti-inflammatory medication to minimize joint pain and swelling.
You should rest easy knowing that if Lyme disease is caught in time, it can be easily treated. The most common antibiotics that are prescribed to combat Lyme disease in dogs are doxycycline, amoxicillin, and azithromycin. In some cases, dogs need a longer course of antibiotic treatment if they are not responding as well to the treatment. Depending on how long the dog had Lyme disease, other more severe symptoms may have developed. If that is the case, they may require additional therapy and treatment to target individual organs or systems that were damaged by the disease.
Removing A Deer Tick From Your Dog
- Use a pair of tweezers.
- The tweezers should be as close to the dog’s skin as possible.
- Grab the head of the tick and carefully remove it from the bite.
- Check that the parasite has been completely removed.
- Disinfect the wound and check it frequently. If circular redness were created around the bite, it could indicate a Lyme disease infection.
- Keep the bite in mind and watch your dog’s behavior. If you notice that you are sick, dull, or have a fever, go to a vet as soon as possible.
After you have removed the tick, you will have to get rid of it. Some use quite drastic methods and burn the parasite to protect their furry ones and themselves. But there are much less aggressive options, like putting it on a piece of tape and folding it. So you can eliminate it without you, or your dog is in danger.
Protecting Against Ticks And Tick Bites On Dogs
Remember, one of the best ways to prevent and detect ticks is to bathe your dog regularly and thoroughly check their fur after outdoor walks. Taking care of your pet is much more than just giving them food, playing with them, and buying them toys; you must go further and do everything possible to avoid ailments and diseases. Be sure to give your dogs antiparasitics every month, brush their hair once a day, and pay attention to their behavior as behavior changes and lameness are signs of illness.
Remember that ticks can also attack us, and many of them bite without causing pain or detection. To protect yourself, it is recommended to wear a hat if you are going on an outdoor walk with your dog and thoroughly check your hair when you return. In addition, you can purchase a tick collar for your dog that aids in repelling ticks from your furry friend.
Vaccination is also a good way to protect your furry friend from developing Lyme disease. Do not forget to vaccinate your dog either, because this way, you guarantee that its body can defend itself against the tick-borne diseases that may affect it throughout its life.