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Tick removal methods if it's more than a few?

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Noah (the dog I adopted from the animal shelter and am bringing home tomorrow) has around 10-15 ticks on him.

 

What's the best way of removing that many ticks, one at a time or are there tick dips that a vet can give that work to get them all off?

 

I got a tick control shampoo for him but will have to ask the people at the shelter tomorrow if it's ok for him to get a bath right now. He just got neutered Monday and may not be able to get in water for a few days.

 

If one by one is the best way to go, I'm going to have the vet do that. I'm not that good yet at taking ticks off and with that many, I'd rather someone who knew what they were doing do it.

 

I'm going to have him vaccinated for Lyme disease while he's at the vet and get him started on heartworm/flea/tick preventative.

 

Thanks!

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duchess has only ever had 1 tick..I pulled it out..

I always thought you couldn't just pull them out

but vet said just a myth about that...soooo pulled that bad boy out..I use revolution..for fleas ticks earmites and heartworm...but I live in very rural area..so I use flea and tick collar too.....

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I would just pull them out. It's not that tricky, really. Just grasp as close to the mouthparts as you can with a pair of fine nosed tweezers and pull with firm, steady pressure. They should come out whole (and alive...shudder). I dispose of the bodies by putting them in some toilet paper and flushing them down the toilet. If the head is still in the dog, just clean the area with some hydrogen peroxide and apply some neosporin and keep an eye on it. The head should come out in a few days.

 

It's always possible that there may be more ticks on the dog that have not attached yet, so keep checking on a daily basis and removing them as needed. The most popular tick watering hole seems to be on the top of the head, near the base of the pinnae (ear flaps).

 

Be sure to wash your hands and the tweezers thoroughly with warm water and soap afterward.

 

As far as preventatives, I use Frontline (only during the tick seasons, when it's warm and wet outside; during the rest of the year I don't bother) because it's waterproof, and I live in a rainy climate and Lucy will swim if she gets a chance. Plus if she rolls in something nasty, I'd like to be able to bathe her without having to reapply the pesticides.

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Ok, thanks!

 

He's got an appt. at the vet Friday anyway for a health check that the shelter requires and that I'd want to get even if they didn't require it. While he's there, I'll probably just get the vet to do it.

 

It seems like I remember reading somewhere that removed ticks shouldn't be flushed down the toilet but it didn't say why other than that it didn't kill them. It said to put them in a bottle of rubbing alcohol and then throw it away.

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I remember reading about the toilet thing too, but I've never seen a tick actually crawl back out of the toilet once flushed. I suppose it's possible.

 

As far as leaving them on until Friday, the longer they remain attached, the greater the risk of disease transmission. It really is safer for the dog to remove ticks promptly. :rolleyes:

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Originally posted by Lucy Goosey:

I remember reading about the toilet thing too, but I've never seen a tick actually crawl back out of the toilet once flushed. I suppose it's possible.

 

As far as leaving them on until Friday, the longer they remain attached, the greater the risk of disease transmission. It really is safer for the dog to remove ticks promptly. :rolleyes:

I thought of that too. It's just so many to take off but I don't want to leave them on there any longer. He's a very calm and good natured dog, so I don't think I'll have much of a problem with it. I don't have a muzzle that fits him yet, that is the only thing I'm hesitant about: doing it with him unmuzzled. If I were a dog, I'd probably want to nip at someone who was pulling things out of me too.

 

I'm good with handling tweezers from doing my eyebrows, so it should be fine. It would be great if the vet that neutered him took them off while he was still under the anesthesia, but I doubt that, the shelter staff said they had too many dogs to attend to to do that.

 

I've never seen a tick come back out of the toilet either. I suppose it's possible but I use long lasting chemical toilet bowl fresheners in mine that would probably kill it even if it wasn't drowned. For as many as he's got on him though, I'll probably dispose of them in the rubbing alcohol bottle since I never use it anyway.

 

Thanks again, I'll put Lily outside tomorrow when I bring him home and take him into the bathroom to take them off, then let him out to get acquainted. I hope he can get a bath too; I'll have to ask about that because of his stitches.

 

I've got a pet first aid kit with hydrogen peroxid wipes and other things in it and I've got some Neosporin already, so I'm all set for it.

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Originally posted by tildy:

duchess has only ever had 1 tick..I pulled it out..

I always thought you couldn't just pull them out

but vet said just a myth about that...soooo pulled that bad boy out..I use revolution..for fleas ticks earmites and heartworm...but I live in very rural area..so I use flea and tick collar too.....

You can pull them out, but there's a certain way you have to do it, the way described below by Lucy.

 

The only "myths" out there about removing ticks is that you can use petroleum jelly or hold a match or lit lighter to the tick to get it to suffocate or kill it. All that does it cause further irritation at the site and cause the tick to attach itself further and deeper.

 

I use Revolution also, but I don't use storebought flea/tick collars because they aren't very effective and don't work much further past the neck. I'll get one from the vet if I'm going to go camping with Lily or something like that. I always check her daily for ticks because this is a heavily wooded/forested coastal area where ticks are numerous.

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The concern with removing the tick properly (grasping it near the head/mouthparts) is that if you squeeze the tick's body while trying to remove it you can cause it to regurgitate stomach contents into your dog, thereby greatly increasing the chances of disease transmission should the tick be carrying something. As others have said, the longer a tick remains on your dog, the greater the likelihood of disease transmission as well (e.g., I believe a tick has to be attached at least 24 hours before it's likely to transmit Lyme).

 

A little soap in a jar of water prevents ticks and fleas from being able to swim and they will drown. So if you don't want to use up your rubbing alcohol, just put a little dish soap in a jar or bottle of water and drop the tick in.

 

Before getting the Lyme vaccine for your dog, please do some research. I'm sure plenty of folks have gotten the vaccines for their pets with no problems, but the sense I get from the Tick list is that it may not be very effective and may even cause Lyme symptoms, so inform yourself before making the decision to use the vaccine.

 

A number of folks, myself included, have found Frontline to be less than effective for ticks in the past few years, and now there's even some discussion about effectiveness for fleas. In this part of the country it has to be applied year-round--even a warm day or two in the winter will make ticks active. By far the best tick preventive available is the Preventic collar, but it is not suitable if your dog chews it, if the dog swims a lot, or if you have cats who may come in contact with it. I have cats that are very chummy with my dogs, so I don't use the collars, but people who do use them are quite happy with their effectiveness.

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I agree with Julie. Educate yourself before giving the Lyme vac. I know I will never give it to any of my dogs, ever. Tick-L is a great list and very educational. The Preventick collar I use just about year round, while it doesn't stop them from biting I have not had one "embedded" while using the collar. It only takes a bite to spread disease though. And I don't know why vasoline doesn't work for any of you...I leave it on about 5 minutes, the tick has pulled out, then I simply treat the area of the bite.

 

Karen

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Karen,

Actually the tick has to be attached for a while to be able to transmit disease. I've had this discussion before when discussing Frontline because ticks can transmit Lyme within 24 hours but Frontline can take (according to Merial anyway) 48 hours to actually kill a tick. Then again, there are those who believe that while the tick may not be dead, the Frontline paralyzes its mouthparts fairly quickly, so the 48-hour Frontline killing window might not be a problem for Lyme transmission in 24 hours after all. Since Frontline doesn't seem to be working well on ticks for me any more, it's really all academic.

 

J.

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I might be wrong here but dont you have to pay for the dog you resue and are they not suppose to come to you healthy and cleaned up so I would think they should have the ticks removed before you get him he was at the vets and that could of been done before anything else if they couldnt do it he had them on him when he came to them and they should of looked after the problem as soon as he got there I would question that because that is a health issue

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Ferg has been on Frontline for all the 9 years we've had her. And, even when we've gone hiking and Chuck and I have had dozens of ticks to remove, she's always been clean by the time we get home. And we haven't seena flea on her for more than the time it took it to hop off.

 

I can't see how any critter could climb back up after getting flushed. I have personally removed and replaced toilets and have seen the plumbing involved. I do know that washing critters down the drain works only if you have lots of scalding water. So that might be where the story started. Then again, if you squish the critter or spike it with the tweezers or a nail file, it becomes a "mute point" (to quote a bad tech writer I once knew).

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Hi I'm a new member here and my dog Molly had a tick once, the best way I found to get rid was with tweezers, but instead of just pulling out, I found it was best to twist and pull, this way the little tick looses its grip on the poor dogs flesh.

 

Hope this was of some use.

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I've pulled many dogs from shelters with ticks. Shelters have one purpose (keeping unwanted pets from running loose), a true rescue has another (rehabbing pets and matching them with appropriate homes) - one shouldn't confuse the two and thus take the opportunity to imply that there is a failing here.

 

Anyway, ticks give me the MAJOR woo-woos. I've cleaned up dogs and sheep with maggots and it doesn't gross me out nearly as badly as the ticks for some reason.

 

Nevertheless, it's a part of rescuing. What I'd do with a tick-infested dog is use Adams dip immediately, which kills everything almost instantly. Then I'd carefully remove anything I could find.

 

After 48 hours I'd apply Frontline. At the time it was still very effective against ticks. These days I'd probably use an amitraz collar as that is what my dogs wear during the season now.

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Thanks everyone for the advice!

 

When Noah came home, most of the ticks had been pulled off of him by the shelter staff or by the vet when he was neutered. I had to pull one or two off of him but they were easy to get. I'm not a very squeamish person but there is something about ticks that gross me out. I can watch the most graphic medical shows with no problem (thanks grandma! She's a retired RN who has always talked about surgical procedures and things like that during meals, has since I was a kid.) but ticks really get to me and give me a bad case of the heebie jeebies. Don't even get me started on roaches...ugh. Thankfully dogs don't get roach infestations.

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I'm sorry Paul, but it's definitely not recommended that you twist at all. That's the fastest way to seperate the head from the body.

 

Here is [yuck ] a page describing proper removal technique, including storage of removed ticks.

 

http://www.aafp.org/afp/20020815/643.html

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Remove the ticks now. Don't leave them on -- they may become engorged and drop off. When they drop off, what they do is crawl off and find somewhere nice to lay their eggs. When they lay eggs you can expect several thousand new roommates to show up in about three weeks.

 

I neglected to Frontline the dogs in December, when I took them to Virginia to visit my family. Due to the warm snap (which I wish were happening now), they picked up ticks which became engorged and dropped off in various places around my apartment after I returned to Philadelphia. Not much is grosser than an engorged tick that you at first thought was a seed or a caper, wondering, "Why is that caper on my bed?" Luckily they did not reproduce but I spent a few weeks being very worried about it. Once you have zillions of baby ticks in the house it's apparently impossible to get rid of them without professional help.

 

Do you have a Gentle Leader or other headcollar? If so, you can get someone else to hold the leash while you remove ticks if you are worried about him snapping. Otherwise, I'd consider going to a groomer who will help you do it.

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Melanie,

Your caper comment had me laughing out loud. Thanks for the Friday morning merriment!

 

As for ticks, I have the world's most cast-iron stomach (could eat my lunch in short breaks while assisiting with surgery back when I worked for a vet), but like others here, having to handle ticks is a real gross out!

 

J.

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Just a thought...if you're bothered with ticks around your home, get some guinea hens...especially if you live where ticks can be a problem year round.

 

Our acreage is surrounded by trees. Three years ago there were ticks everywhere. We were even bombarbed by ticks when walk across the neighbor's native grassland. Then we got guinea hens. Now we rarely see more than one tick a year.

 

Guineas are also great for grasshopper control and just plain funny!

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we have rhode island reds and an unidentified pair of white hens (given to use by a friend after a school project was over). They are as good at rodent control as tick control. I can't count how many times I've seen them chasing each other flinging around a shrew (or mole, I don't really know what they are).

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We have a big problem with ticks around here now (so much that Dublin gets frontline year round - ticks have been known to show up on dogs in February during a cold snap! :eek: ) We use Frontline and he has never had any ticks or fleas.

 

The problem with using the petroluem jelly method, is that while it might work just fine to get the tick to detach, it causes the tick to reguritate before doing so, thus exposing your dog to the dangers you were hoping to save him from. Same deal with the match method.

 

The safest way is really to pull them out straight (before the little suckers know what hit them! ) There is also a tool you can get for a few dollars at most pet stores that I have heard works great.

 

Kitch

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