Tips to Protect Your Pet from Lyme Disease
With the arrival of warm spring temperatures, parasites become more active after the cold winter weather. Therefore, April is designated as the Prevention of Lyme Disease in Dogs Month. You should take preventative measures to reduce the chances of ticks feeding on or hitching a ride with your pet. Additionally, learn to identify the common signs of Lyme disease so that you can ensure your pet receives the necessary treatment.
How can I prevent my pet from getting Lyme disease?
Lyme disease can affect both you and your pet’s long-term health. To safeguard your family and pet from the disease’s severe consequences, take the following steps:
- To avoid ticks, please frequently mow your yard as they are uncommon in short grass.
- Avoid walking in areas with ticks – Although taking your pet for a walk in the woods can be a fun experience, places with tall grass and leafy remains are where ticks are commonly found.
- Thoroughly check your pet for ticks by searching in key areas such as near the ears, in the groin, under the tail, and between the toes. Look for any crawling or attached ticks.
- Make sure to give your pet monthly tick-prevention medication. This will protect them from getting Lyme disease by killing ticks that may carry the pathogen.
- Consult your veterinarian to find out if Lyme vaccination is appropriate for your dog and vaccinate your pet accordingly.
Signs of Lyme Disease in Dogs
Lyme disease is a prevalent illness transmitted through tick bites worldwide. However, only a small percentage of dogs (5% to 10%) display symptoms and these symptoms may not manifest until several months after the initial tick bite. Dogs with Lyme disease may show signs such as:
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Shifting-leg lameness
- Painful, inflamed joints
The bacterium that causes Lyme disease may not be completely eliminated by antibiotics, which can lead to the development of chronic disease. Your dog’s symptoms may come and go as the illness recurs. Although rare, kidney disease may also develop and can be recognized by symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, increased thirst, and urination.
Regular tick prevention can help protect your pet from getting Lyme disease, which can cause lifelong illness. Contact our team to find out which tick preventive is most suitable for your four-legged friend.