Paralysis ticks and your pet: Owners warned to be vigilant

Paralysis ticks (Ixodes Holocyclus) are dangerous parasites that attach to our dogs & cats causing paralysis and even death. These ticks are carried by native animals like bandicoots and breed predominantly along the east coast in warm and humid weather.  Recent evidence  has shown an increase of the tick  locally in the Highlands which has traditionally not been a common area. 

It is the female paralysis tick that causes paralysis tick toxicity. Once attached it begins to feed by burrowing its mouthparts into the animal’s skin and sucking blood – it then starts producing a potent toxin that affects the animal’s central nervous system and causes progressive paralysis and possibly death.

While there is an anti-serum available to treat tick paralysis, treatment is expensive and very much dependent on early identification of symptoms by the owner and immediate veterinary attention.

An engorged paralysis tick

Symptoms that your pet may display if they are suffering from tick paralysis include:

  • Weakness or paralysis in the back legs, progressing to the front legs
  • Wobbling and lack of coordination
  • Coughing or gagging
  • Change in tone of the bark
  • A grunt on breathing
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Regurgitating or vomiting
  • Drooling
  • Inability to stand
  • Facial paralysis

We recommend preventative treatments to kill and repel ticks that come into contact with our pets. For dogs, use the Advantage Seresto tick collar if traveling to a known ‘tick area’, this collar must be applied 48 hours before the dog is fully protected.

For year round protection, apply Frontline Plus for dogs every 2 weeks.

Bravecto is another effective product that provides coverage for paralysis ticks for 6 months! Bravecto is simple to give to dogs as it is a meat flavoured chewable tablet. You could also consider Simparica Trio that provides protection for Intestinal worms, fleas and paralysis ticks as well as heartworm.

For further information, call in & see us in the store, or email us:

4/72-76 Station St Bowral NSW 2576
PH: 024862 1175
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