As the weather starts warming up in Vancouver and the endless rainy days come to a close, we encourage pet owners to educate themselves on ticks and the threats they pose. In this blog post, we’ll delve into what these parasites are and the most common diseases they cause in dogs.
Ticks are parasites that live on the skin a variety of animals and feed on their blood. Depending on the species, they can have a beak-like mouth, but all ticks require multiple blood meals in their roughly year-long life cycle. Because of this, they have the potential to carry a number of dangerous transmitted diseases.
This is caused by the transmission of super tiny organisms called protozoa. This is one of the most serious diseases, causing pale gums, depression, fever, dark coloured pee, and even shock in some cases.
This is the most common disease that ticks give to dogs- but only 5-10% of infected dogs actually get sick from it. At worst, it can cause lameness (limping), depression, or a number of digestive diseases.
This little bug attacks red blood cells, potentially causing anemia or other heart conditions.
Many different types of ticks carry this. Symptoms are joint pain, nervous system issues, and depression.
Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
For this fever to be truly impactful, the tick has to be feeding on your pet for at least five hours. Thankfully, dogs are at a much lower risk of this than cats, and if you have an indoor cat the risk of this is quite low.
Symptoms include depression, diarrea, vomiting.
Symptoms for this typically include mild fever, depression, and a reduced appetite for dogs. For cats, the fever might be more severe, paired with a runny nose and maybe even abscesses where the tick bite happened. This is a more rare tick bite and is nicknamed Rabbit Fever.
If you have any questions, be sure to stop by our Vancouver veterinary clinic to speak with our knowledgeable vet, or to inquire about our other services such as house calls, laser therapy, or dental procedures.