Montreal area dog owners and in particular those on the West Island should take note of the recent tick warning.Photo used from tickresourcecenter.org
Warmer climates are believed to be largely responsible for a higher than usual tick population - and they are not just in the deep dark woods anymore.
in fact in the last year I have pulled some ticks off of dogs belonging to clients of mine who live in downtown Montreal and are largely urban dwellers who visit parks and dog runs.
Lyme Disease in Montreal? Watch your dogs!
The major concern with Ticks bites is infection and Lyme disease - which leads to swelling of the joints, arthritis, feverish flu like symptoms and can even led to kidney failure.
It is recommended to check your pets thoroughly after coming in from the outdoors - especially if in tall grass or wooded areas.
Young ticks can be difficult to spot since they can be as small as a grain of rice - but it is important to get them early since you can typically avoid infection in the first 24-48 hours.
Removal of a tick can be tricky and if you arent sure what to do - contact your vet immediately. Leaving part of the tick emedded in your dog can lead to infection as well as squeezing the tick upon removeal.
How to keep your Montreal area dogs safeThere are several tick preventative products available from your vet. None are guiranteed to be one hundred percent effective but they are better than nothing. As well you can have your dog vaccinated for Lyme disease if you think you will be in high risk areas. Above all be vigilant in checking your pet after outings. Spotting and removing the ticks early is really your best defense.