Paralysis ticks

Discussion in 'Other Animals and Invertebrate' started by Kitah, Oct 1, 2012.

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  1. Kitah

    Kitah Donator Donator

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    Rightio! Just had an idea to make this post, hopefully for some 'public awareness' for those who know little or nothing about paralysis ticks.

    This tick season is/will be a shocker- there have been so many cases already and it's only going to get worse. SO;

    Tick distribution
    [​IMG]
    (image from the sourthern animal referral centre).

    Note- be aware that if you live along the eastern coast (i.e. tick area), you arent necessarily safe if you live in the suburbs. e.g. someone recently walked their dog from their house a few houses up the road to an IGA shopping center, and 4 days later the dog was at the vets for tick paralysis. But having said this, they are worse where wildlife are

    Prevention: These guys arent as easy to prevent as fleas, for example.

    You have three main options for dogs;
    1. Tick collar; tend to work better in shorter coated breeds, and must be fitted tightly. not good for dogs that swim regularly as they are a powder on a rubber collar. Preventix lasts 8wks, kiltix 6wks. Preventix is toxic to cats, so if you have a dog in close contact with a cat I'd recommend kiltix.

    2. permoxin weekly rinses- 10mL per 400mL water, and saturate the entire dog, but avoid the eyes. Toxic to cats! this must be done WEEKLY to prevent/kill paralysis ticks. When you have saturated the dog, you can towel dry them but do not rinse it off- just let them air dry as is.

    3. Advantix- my personal favourite and what I use for my border collie pup. However, it is expensive and must be applied every 2wks for paralysis ticks- it is a spot on, on the skin of the back of the neck. Extremely toxic to cats

    With thick or long coated breeds its often beneficial to clip them during high risk periods to enable the early identification of paralysis ticks on the animal.

    Tick prevention for cats: the only real option is frontline spray every 3wks. This can also be used for dogs but depending on the size it can work out very expensive.

    NONE of these are 100% protective, even if you use all three at once (but, if you use >1 method, you reduce your risk of tick paralysis even more). For EXAMPLE: One of my own cats, which I am pedantic about applying frontline spray to, had a paralysis tick tonight- fortunately I noticed it crawling across her back, and she must have just picked it up. So you STILL need to do regular tick searches! Generally when tick paralysis signs are observed, the tick has been on for about 4 days- its not a case of you walk the dog that morning, they get a tick, and that afternoon they are showing signs- they dont work that quickly. As said above, for long or thick coated breeds it is especially beneficial to clip them, because even if a tick is present, and you do very thorough tick searches, you CAN still miss them surprisingly easily.



    Signs of tick paralysis:
    the main two ways tick toxin affects animals clinically is by an unsteady gait, progressing to hindlimb weakness that progresses and moves forwards to involve the front legs, and the animal will eventually be unable to stand if untreated. It also affects respiratory function- affected animals may start to have an increased respiratory rate, or increased effort with breathing. They may also breathe quite loudly. Dogs will often start having a gagging/retching type clinical sign and may even start vomiting. If a dog is showing clinical signs, even if you've removed the tick, they must see a veterinarian! Even once you remove the tick, the tick toxin present in the body will still bind and the clinical signs will progress without treatment. The longer you leave it before treatment, the riskier it is, the harder it is for them to recover, the longer it takes for them to recover and the more it will hurt your back pocket regarding $$$! If you find a tick on your pet and pull if off, and they are showing no signs -keep them quiet, avoid exercise, keep them cool, and keep a very close eye on them! if you notice any signs, they must be taken to see a veterinarian. Some dogs may not show signs but you must keep a close eye on them.

    Anyway... hope no-one minds me posting this. I know few people will see it, but even one person more aware is better than nothing :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2012
  2. Renenet

    Renenet Very Well-Known Member

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    Hey Kitah,

    Awesome post. I follow my local vet's FB page. They've also mentioned that paralysis ticks are going to be particularly bad this season and that they've seen quite a few cases already.
     
  3. Kitah

    Kitah Donator Donator

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    The local clinic has had so many cases already, even earlier this year. e.g. 3-4 can go in on any particular day, some days.
     
  4. Wild~Touch

    Wild~Touch Very Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for the info Kitah :)

    I follow your recommendations vigilantly and plus I use Permoxin in a spray bottle diluted as per instructions on container.

    Spray feet, legs and undercarriage of the dog and ... (they hate this) under the tail and in between toes.

    I live in heavy duty tick country and particularly value my dogs and find the ticks around here are resistant to cold weather too.

    Cheers
    Sandee :)
     
  5. phantomreptiles

    phantomreptiles Well-Known Member

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    A timely post Kitah!
    Over this long weekend we had 32 animals with tick paralysis, so you definitely can not be vigilant enough.
    Several of these pets only left the house to go to the bathroom.
    And as Kitah mentioned the ticks do seem to be particularly bad this year with not all making it:(
     
  6. slim6y

    slim6y Almost Legendary

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    So happy to be in a tick free land!!!

    Great post Kitah. Was always so concerned about the ticks (living on a cane farm). Neighbours dogs used to get loads of ticks - but luckily no paralysis tick.

    What's the cause of the 'particularly bad' tick season?
     
  7. Bigchewy

    Bigchewy Active Member

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    Best to avoid high grass , bush , where native animals are there where lots of kind ticks is I have avoid walking through nearly 2yrs got no ticks on my two dogs it was bad all over the dog face once u through high grass and bush also where kangaroos are so avoid them they come anytime of the yr when summer comes its grow real fast lots of tick Active
     
  8. Kitah

    Kitah Donator Donator

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    Last years rainfall and temperatures slim6y- this season is now just ideal for the little buggers.

    Unfortunately you cant always tell which animal will pull through and which wont. E.g. An insanely old dog came in with 8 engorged paralysis ticks, yet it recovered quickly with no complications. Yet a younger retriever had one, yet it died even with obvious additional support. It is just so much better to prevent them than treat them.

    And I'm regularly surprised at how few people know about paralysis ticks

    Also, phantom, hope you dont mind me asking.. But do you work at the AEC at springwood?
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  9. Chris

    Chris Guest

    Do they not occur in other areas like Adelaide, Melbourne, Perth etc, only on the east coast?
     
  10. Flaviruthless

    Flaviruthless Very Well-Known Member

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    And how reluctant people are to spend what can be as little as $20 to attempt to combat them! We get people all the time saying that it's too expensive to get preventative measures and that they don't believe it will happen to them. I'd much rather know that my dogs had some protection than nothing at all.

    Good post Kitah!
     
  11. butters

    butters Well-Known Member

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    Only on the east coast
     
  12. Kitah

    Kitah Donator Donator

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    $15 preventic collar lasts 8 weeks. Thats not expensive! But I know what you mean Flavi.. someone came in the other day and knew nothing about ticks- I explained it all to them, and the different methods of prevention. They said no, they dont like tick collars with the powder etc, they couldn't be bothered doing weekly permoxin rinses and that left advantix. But no, they didnt want that either because it was too expensive.

    They'll see whats more expensive when the dog gets a tick...
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  13. Bec

    Bec Active Member

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    The people that say its to expensive only think of themselves and not there animals they have taken on for a life time commitment. Very luckily I have never seen a tick on any of my dogs I won't risk it and not cover them for it. If people are saying its to expensive to treat them then u have to ask how often there animals go to the vet for check ups. Quiet sad that there are people out there who are to self centred to think of there animals suffering.
     
  14. Justdragons

    Justdragons Very Well-Known Member

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    people want pets but dont want to look after them right.. it sucks.
     
  15. notechistiger

    notechistiger Donator Donator

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    Thanks for the post. Already pulled 5-6 ticks off my dog in the last two days. Awful things.
     
  16. longqi

    longqi Very Well-Known Member

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    One horrible beastie that makes my skin crawl

    What simple preventative measures can be used to minimise ticks in your yard etc etc??
    Maybe keeping grass cut?? etc etc?
     
  17. Wild~Touch

    Wild~Touch Very Well-Known Member

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    I think ticks hitch a ride on wild birds and other wildlife.. so near impossible to keep the house yard tick free..

    I've been walking in the bush and ticks actually drop out of trees onto your head....yuk! Horrible things.

    I just work on protecting my dogs as Kitah suggested
     
  18. Kitah

    Kitah Donator Donator

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    In your yard, you can get pesticides and spray around the entire yard. If you live on acreridge like I do though, its quite hard.

    Avoiding walking in known or suspect tick areas- e.g. along rivers, waterways, bushy areas are most prone. Doesnt mean they arent in other areas though. Keeping the grass cut, good quality fences to minimise wildlife and strays/feral animals. But its tricky.

    Checking animals daily is also important- it means you get about 3 chances/tick searches to try and locate any ticks if present before the animal starts showing signs.
     
  19. CaptainRatbag

    CaptainRatbag Very Well-Known Member

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    I wonder if people can wear tick collars?:shock:
     
  20. Kitah

    Kitah Donator Donator

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    Mhmm debatable. At least most humans wouldn't need clipping to locate any ticks- unlike long or thick coated dog and cat breeds.
     
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