Preventive steps to keep ticks away from your pets
Cases of tick-borne diseases have doubled in the last decade, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and no region of the country has felt it worse than the Northeastern United States, from Maryland to Maine. That is why every resident within our Connecticut and Massachusetts service area should take the time to learn tick-prevention methods. Today, we'll be talking about tick prevention as it relates to pets.
Dogs and cats can get sick from tick-borne diseases. Of the two, dogs have a slightly greater risk. Some of the diseases that can affect your pets are Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, babesiosis, Hepatozoonosis, anaplasmosis, and ehrlichiosis. Each of these has a long list of symptoms that you may want to become familiar with. If not treated early, some can lead to serious illness or chronic health problems.
Acquiring a collar from a veterinarian should be on the top of every pet owner's to-do list. But, while a flea and tick collar is a good first step for tick prevention, it is not a complete solution in and of itself.
When a tick gets on a dog or cat, it will usually work its way up to the ears. That is why collars work. As a tick crawls to the ears, it passes over or under the collar and is exposed to an active ingredient that kills it. But ticks don't just attach to the interior of ears. They can attach anywhere on the skin, and they are as prone to attach between the toes as they are the interior of ears. If they do not attach in the ear or on the head, your pet's collar isn't going to have any effect. You're going to need more protection than this.
Other Tick Control Products
There are many products that help with controlling ticks. Your veterinarian can guide you in the purchase of these as well. Implementing these products can increase your protection but, again, they aren't going to make your tick control complete. They won't stop ticks from climbing on you or someone else and being carried into your home. They won't stop rodents from bringing ticks into your home. And they won't even stop your pet from bringing ticks in with them. You're going to need more protection than this.
An important step in tick prevention is establishing a fence around outdoor play areas. Fences reduce wildlife traffic and make it less likely that ticks will be brought into these areas by animals. Fences also work to keep your dogs contained, so they don't explore your landscaping and accidentally pick ticks up in the places they hide. But birds can bring ticks into outdoor recreation areas and your dogs can pick ticks up inside your home if mice or rats are harboring in your walls or attic spaces. So, you're going to need more protection than this.
Ticks require a lot of moisture to survive. If you keep your property dry, ticks will have a harder time finding a hiding place in which to wait for your dog or cat to stroll by. Everything you do to control moisture near your home can have an impact on tick populations. Inspecting your gutters and downspouts to make sure there are no breaks or obstructions is a good start. But, as you can probably guess, you're going to need more protection than this.
The best way to not have ticks climbing on your pets or climbing onto you when you're out in the yard is to not have ticks in your yard, and the best way to not have ticks in your yard is by investing in seasonal service for ticks. This service is often placed under mosquito control because the treatment used works to control ticks and mosquitoes. If you get this type of service, you're killing two birds with one stone. When you combine this with the other prevention steps on this list, you'll have all the protection you need.
American Pest Solutions
Guess what? Mosquito Guard service from American Pest Solutions gives you coverage for ticks and mosquitoes. Reach out to us today to schedule an appointment to meet with one of our pest professionals. Ticks are serious business. Make sure you and your pets are protected.