Ticks are ectoparasites (external parasites), that feed on the blood of animals, i.e. mammals, birds and sometimes reptiles and amphibians.
Animals and humans pick up ticks from their environment. Ticks undergo what is called questing, whereby they crawl up shrubs or long grass up to about 40-60cms off the ground. As animals walk past, they brush against the tick, dislodging it and the tick then attaches itself to the animal. It’s an ambush type attack and these horrible creatures lie in wait for a long time, as they can go for over a year without feeding.
Ticks can spread bacteria and parasites through their bites causing diseases in animals and humans.
It is essential for you to make sure that your puppy is protected from ticks. There are a number of solutions available to control ticks; from shampoos to monthly spot-on treatments. Always ask your vet which treatment she recommends.
Beware of Biliary
One of the diseases that can be caused by ticks is Biliary. Sadly, thousands of dogs die in South Africa each year from this disease. It can become fatal from between 24-48 hours. Early detection can save their lives. Unfortunately the longer the disease has progressed, the smaller the chance of survival for your pet.
Watch out for the following symptoms: