In this post, we are going to give out 6 different ways of how to remove a tick from a dog. Removing a tick from a dog is somehow difficult and unpleasant but it is important you do it correctly and always to prevent infections and disease-causing organisms from attacking your pet. It is common for a dog to have tick especially if it spends time outside, so it is expected that you conduct tick check every now and then. It is important that you know what a tick is so that you can easily identify one when you see it. Also, knowing about tick will help you to understand the effects they have when they attach themselves to your pets.
WHAT IS A TICK?
A tick is a stubborn parasite that are mostly found in areas with long grasses and woodlands. Its body comes in one piece and it uses the barbs of its mouth that look like harpoon to attach to the host. The legs of a tick are like a crab’s and it secretes fluid that helps to hold the parasite to the body of its host. There are so many sizes of tick, some are so small that you may not be able to see them with your naked eyes while others may be the size of a human fingertip. There are about 200 species of tick in the United States alone and they survive in woods, forests, grasses, lawns and also in urban.
A tick is very dangerous because it carries infections and disease-causing organisms that can cause illness like Lyme disease, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis and others. It takes between 3 to 6 hours after getting a bite from a tick for pathogens to be transmitted. So, when you see a tick on your dog, it is very important that you remove it as soon as possible to avoid causing illness for your dog.
1. HOW TO REMOVE A TICK FROM A DOG WITH TWEEZERS
There are steps you must follow to remove tick and prevent the spread of infection:
1. Get Your Tools
It is not advisable to remove a tick from your dog with your hands, you must get supplies and they include hand gloves, tweezers, disinfectant, antiseptic (make sure it is pet friendly), and a container for disposing the ticks. These tools will make it easier for you to remove the ticks and prevent the infection from affecting you.
2. Make Sure Your Dog Is Relaxed And Calm
The best time to remove a tick from your dog is when it is relaxed and calm. This will give you a good grasp of the tick and prevent injuries or accidents. If you try to remove the tick when your dog is agitated, the tick’s head may get stuck into your dog’s skin and the chances of your pet getting infections will increase. You can give your dog a bone or treat to make it calm while you work on the tick.
3. Expose The Tick
You need to expose the tick and make space around it to help you remove it successfully. Wear your gloves and use water to flatten the hair around the tick, you can use rubbing alcohol as well to do this. Use one hand to gently pat the fur around the tick and keep flat, the other hand should be free.
You will notice that the tick will stay at a place and will not make any movement because you have exposed it. Remember that the head of the tick will be buried in the skin of your dog, so only the abdomen will be seen. You should be careful so as not to leave the head firmly attached when removing the tick.
4. Use A Tweezer To Pull The Tick From The Dog
Seize and firmly hold the tick as close to the skin of your dog but be careful so as not to pinch or hurt your pet. Pull the tick out slowly but in a straight and steady motion. Do not jerk as doing so many leave some particles on the skin, this can lead to an infection. If you squeeze the tick, you can push the bacteria-filled saliva of the parasite into the bite wound.
5. Clean Up The Tick Bite Wound
Use the pet friendly antiseptic or disinfectant to gently wipe the area with the tick bite wound. If there is no antiseptic or disinfectant, you can use soap and water but antiseptics or disinfectant are recommended because they contain ingredients that will prevent inflammation.
6. Check Other Parts For Tick
After removing the tick, there may be possibility that more ticks may be hiding in other parts of your dog’s skin, so you will need to thoroughly check. Carefully check their coat, ears, foot pads, and gets, these areas are common hiding places for ticks.
7. Get Rid Of The Tick
Do not drop the tick removed from your dog on surfaces, it is best that you put it in a sealable container or a jar with lid. After removing the tick, take a picture of it and drop the parasite in a container with alcohol, seal before you dispose. You can also use a tape and stick the tick to a piece of paper, snap it and throw the paper away.
You may ask yourself why you should snap, it is important that you do so that you can show the picture to your vet for identification in case your pet starts to show symptoms of any disease. Dispose the gloves and wash your hands thoroughly. Remember to disinfect the tweezer before storing them.
8. Watch Out For Symptoms Of Tick Diseases
Carefully monitor your dog for any symptom of tick disease or change in behavior after weeks or months of removing the tick. If you notice symptoms like fast breathing, lack of energy or difficulty using one or more legs (lameness), please see your vet.
2. HOW TO REMOVE A TICK FROM A DOG WITHOUT TWEEZERS
There is no difference on the steps to remove tick from a dog when you use tweezer and without it. You can use another tool known as tick hook or remover. Get the other tools like hand gloves, disinfectant or antiseptic and a container for disposing the tick. Make your dog to become calm and relaxed, then expose the tick. Flatten the fur around the tick using water or rubbing alcohol. Follow the instructions on how to use tick remover to get rid of tick.
- Slide the tick remover slowly underneath the tick
- Pinch and pull very gently
- Move in a steady and straight upward motion to remove the tick.
Clean up the bite wound and get rid of the tick. Remember to take picture of the parasite and look out for changes in behavior of your dog after removing the tick.
3. HOW TO REMOVE A TICK FROM A DOG WITH VASELINE
You can use vaseline to make it easier for you to remove tick from your dog. You will need tools like:
- Hand gloves
- Tweezer or tick remover
Use the following steps below:
Wear your gloves, this is to protect your skin against infection transmission. Locate the tick and expose the area using water to flatten the fur around the tick. The area with tick will also appear swollen so it will be easier to detect. Rub a generous amount of vaseline on the tick. This will make the tick to loosen its firm grip on your dog’s skin. This will avoid the situation of leaving the head of the tick stuck in the skin of your canine friend.
Next is to use the tweezer or tick remover to gently pull out the tick. You should be careful when doing this because the tick can rip into two and the bacteria-filled fluid can enter into your dog’s bloodstream. Do not fix the tweezer or tick remover on the body of the tick as it could squish. Target the head, your grip should not be too high so as not to leave mouthparts of the tick in the skin. After firmly holding the tick, pull the tick remover or tweezer backward slowly. You should not twist in a clockwise or anti-clockwise motion as this might squash the tick as well.
Apply more vaseline on the area to suffocate it more. Clean the area with soap and water, if possible, you should disinfectant as well. Take a picture of the tick and dispose in a sealable container. Get rid of the hand gloves and wash your hands with soap and water. This method is not encourage as the vaseline may make the tick to become slippery thereby making it difficult to remove. Vaseline may cause skin irritation for your dog too.
4. HOW TO REMOVE A TICK FROM A DOG EAR
If the tick is on the outer ear, behind the ear or on the skin around the ear, you can use any of the above steps to remove it. Only remove ticks that are easily seen around the edges of the ears, if the tick is inside the ear, do not try to remove it by yourself. See your vet if your dog has tick inside the ear canal because poking a tick remover or tweezer inside your dog’s ear canal can be more harmful. You would not want your dog to battle with ticks and ear problems.
5. HOW TO REMOVE A TICK FROM A DOG THAT IS EMBEDDED
Sometimes the mouthpart or even the head of a tick can remain in the skin of a dog after removing the tick even if you are very careful. This occurs and is unavoidable most times.
When there is an embedded tick on the skin of your mouth, the is less problem. This is because there is a minimal chance of disease being transmitted. The body will recognize the embedded part as a foreign material and in few days, it will be dissolved. The only issue you may face is that the body may react to the embedded part as it does to foreign objects like thorns, so there may be swelling and pain.
You are to treat it like you would treat a thorn getting stuck in the skin of your dog. You can apply antibiotic ointment on the area. Do not try dig the skin in order to pull out the embedded part as you may cause skin irritation and infections for your dog.
6. HOW TO REMOVE A TICK FROM A DOG WITH VINEGAR
Vinegar does not kill tick, it will only cause the parasite to release its grip on the skin because they hate the smell of vinegar.
To use vinegar for tick removal;
- Fill a cup with white undiluted vinegar, soak a cotton swab with vinegar and rub on the tail end of the tick. This will make the tick to back out of the skin.
- Use a tweezer or tick remover to pull out the tick gently but steadily. Be careful so as not to twist the head of the tick or burst it open.
- Drop the tick into the cup of vinegar and allow it to drown before you pour the content into the toilet bowl and flush.
Tick is an enemy to your dog, it causes scratching and discomfort for your pet so you should always get rid of this enemy anytime you see it. There are so many methods you can use to remove tick from your dog but go for the safe methods that will not cause skin irritation or problems for your canine friend.