Ticks & Canine Lyme Disease

It doesn't matter where you live....

Although ticks and Lyme disease are often associated with the Northeast, it’s a mistake to assume that your dog is not exposed in many other regions throughout the United States (including as far west as Northern California!)


Ticks are scarce during the cold winter months, but they arrive in abundance earlier in the spring than you think, and stay around long after summer is gone! Further, they prefer a certain time of day to be up and about!


Your dog’s legs and belly are obvious “hot spots” for tick detection, but there are other dark, blood-rich areas you need to examine as well. And proper removal is vital – never attempt to twist or burn an attached tick (and one common household product is the perfect disinfectant to destroy Lyme disease bacteria!)


A wide variety of effective products are available for the prevention and treatment of Lyme disease, and although many holistic methods have proven successful, there are times when popular chemical sprays and treatments are warranted (but should you be thinking about a vaccination?)


How To Remove A Tick

A dog in the wrong place at the wrong time can be bit by dozens or even hundreds of ticks. Deer ticks go through three stages of life (larva, nymph, and adult), and feed only once in each of these stages; a blood meal ends each stage.

Larval ticks dine on mice and other small rodents, but nymphs and adults are a threat to dogs.

Because they are small and their bites don’t itch, ticks are easily overlooked, especially adult deer ticks and the nymphs of any species. Ticks prefer warm, moist conditions, so double-check under collars and around ears. If you aren’t sure what a lump or bump is, inspect it with a magnifying glass. Warts, similar skin growths, and nipples can feel like feeding ticks.

Be careful when removing a tick to grasp it with tweezers firmly at the head, as close to the dog’s skin as possible, and slowly pull straight back. Never twist, press, burn, or apply irritating substances like kerosene to an attached tick because doing so can cause the parasite to expel the contents of its digestive tract, creating an unwanted hypodermic effect.

Three-percent hydrogen peroxide, the common disinfectant, is recommended for tick bites because the oxygen it contains destroys the Lyme disease bacteria. Hydrogen peroxide can be liberally poured over bites on light-haired dogs (keep away from eyes and apply directly to the skin) but because it’s a bleach, this method is not recommended for black or dark-haired dogs.

Using an eyedropper to apply hydrogen peroxide directly to the bite helps prevent unwanted bleaching.

-From Whole Dog Journal’s ebook: Ticks & Canine Lyme Disease


- Want To Adopt -

If you are writing us about adopting a dog and do not have an adoption application on file with us, use this link to review our policies and process and complete an application.

If you have completed our adoption application, and/or have another inquiry, please use the email link to contact us.

Adoption Application Email Us