Courtesy of Jantoo Cartoons
Courtesy of Jantoo Cartoons

It’s tick season for us fur-critters. What should you do about ’em? Well, we certainly shouldn’t eat the remedy. Sam here. With the weather definitely warming up and summer in full swing (cheer up sports fans…there’s only 73 more days to autumn, but whose counting?), many fur-pawrents wonder how to handle the annual tick season.

IMG_1219We know ticks carry Lyme Disease but did you know their range has expanded over the years. Tick have established a widening of their bunker in Illinois, Iowa, Indiana and Kentucky though their traditional New England hangout is forecast to be below normal. Texas, Oklahoma and Missouri can expect higher than normal ehrlichiosis activity. Southern California and the southeast part of the country can expect an increased risk to this tick borne bacterial infection. Anaplasmosis transmissions, typically found in the south and west, are expected to be especially problematic. You may recall back in 2009, David Letterman was treated for anaplasmosis which he thought had been transmitted when he camped with his 5-year son in their tree house.

Mom is big on non-chemical treatments as much as possible especially since administering stronger toxic pesticides monthly is no guarantee against tick-borne illnesses. Some pets can still acquire tick-borne infections even if they’re on monthly preventives.

2016_Lyme_Forecast_MapSo why are tick-borne diseases so prevalent these days? Well ticks are devilish little buggers and like buggers everywhere, they have expanded their turf. No states are immune from them despite progressively more toxic options being used. Pets are as likely to suffer resistance to treatments just like their upright counterparts are when treated with chemical compounds. Also, tick-borne disease infections are on the rise because some may be transmitted by another evil pest, the mosquito.

So what kind of non-chemical options are out there? Well, glad you asked! As you may know, mom is big on the whole homeopathic thing. I can barely bark that word out but know that homeopathy can offer effective solutions for both the prevention and treatment of Lyme disease.  A 1M dose of Ledum can be effective if used right after removal. It should be followed up with a daily dose of the Lyme disease nosode (Borrelia burgdorferi).

Supplemental herbs like Grape-seed extract or White Willow Bank can ease any inflammation if you find that ticks have attached themselves to your fur.

NoFlash_Thumbs_04If ticks live in your home area, beneficial nematodes may also be used to kill ticks and other garden pests such as grubs. Com­mercially available microscopic S. Feltiae will feed on ticks in your yard.  You can also plant Beauty Berry Bush to repel ticks.

Sure, the best way to avoid getting ticks is to limit your exposure.  Avoiding grassy areas that border wooded areas (a tick’s favorite home base). Immediately following your return from a walk, use a wide toothed flea comb over the dog since ticks don’t attached immediately and are looking for the pawfect, fancy-schmancy all-you-can-eat noshery like a leg or belly in which to burrow. Combing is easier than trying to pull those evil things out and while I’m definitely not a big proponent of the procedure, I’ve heard that frequent baths can help impede ticks.

Natural topical applications that will deter ticks include essential oil like Rose Geranium which are easily sourced and provide good results.  To make your own tick repellent, combine about 20 drops with two tablespoons almond oil (which contains sul­phur, another tick repellent).  Mix  together and place a few drops on your dog or on his collar (do not use on cats or pregnant animals).

Finally, there are also electromagnetic products that look promising. The Anibio Tic-Clip uses an electromag­netic barrier which may work for up to a couple-of-years without the need for frequent topical reapplications.

We know some peeps use traditional tick prod­ucts and that’s ok too, but wanted to provide some info about effective alternatives you can use to protect your fur-kid. It’s possible to keep fur-kids safe by avoiding those areas where ticks are commonly found and by the effective use of natural repellents and treatments. Stay safe whichever game plan you chose❣️

Live, love, bark! <3


29 thoughts on “Arithme-tics

  1. This is so interesting. Because I live in a semi-wilderness area and my dogs are out and about in shrubs and under trees all day I have always used a commercial product, once a month. Even so, ticks find their way (and die) in their fur. I wonder if going homeopathic would provide the same strength. I use homeopathy on myself and I would love to do it for my dogs too. Do you have any idea?

    1. When we used to visit my daughter’s house in the foothills outside the city where deer and bear roamed. I used essential oils and never had any problems. I’ll go through my recipes and post one soon.

  2. My girls are on Bravecto since last year. So far, so good. I’d rather use natural products; but they just weren’t effective here, especially with Ducky going to daycare. (Who knows what the other dog parents were doing – or not doing – to protect their pups from the evil buggers?)

  3. Great post! We have a big tick issue here and it just keeps getting worse every year! We use a natural spray and a traditional tick product right now and so far so good!

  4. No fleas or ticks in the Sonoran desert. We passed a law that they have to relocate to Colorado although some of the blood suckers chose Washington DC instead.

  5. Tippy and I have no way to avoid tick infested areas as our house is in the middle of a woody area and cow pastures are nearby. So, I do have her on an oral tick and flea prevention medicine. She seems to do fine with it. I have found a couple of ticks on her, but they are either crawling or nearly dead if they have attached. I did have a people doctor tell us the best way to get them off of both dogs and humans, if they are attached. Their proboscis is curved, so, if you flip them over onto their back and then pull parallel to the skin, they will come right off with no chance of pulling their head off and risking infection from that. I can attest to the fact that it works well.

  6. They have made it into Canada! Probably escaping from the potential Trump remedies. He will probably spray the whole US with an insecticide!

  7. Cole got a bath Sat, then we went to an open house (him too) that unknown to us had deer around it. I hope he didn’t pick any up!!! We had him on frontline drops 6 years ago when he got a tick bite anyway and rocky mountain spotted fever that almost killed him. OY! Frontline wasn’t effective in our area any longer, but that didn’t stop the vet from selling us a supply. Grrrr.
    Then we found out three humans in our ‘hood had RMSF too. In MD. Not near the Rockies.

    1. 😉 It has made it’s way all over the place. Black dogs are especially difficult to see those cotton-pickin’ things. Some are as small as a poppy seed! With black fur and often times very dark skin…well I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know. Those flea combs help, especially initially before they manage to attach themselves. I’m sure Cole is fine, but give him an extra ear scratch from us❣️

  8. Crikey …. I hate ticks. We have the paralysis tick out here. They not only make you sick. They kill you. Not peeps! Just cats and dogs! We don’t stand a chance once one of them latch onto us. Mum sprays me with a mixture of water, eucalyptus oil, teetree oil, lavender oil and citronella whenever we are in a tick area. So far so good but I don’t have much fur so it’s pretty easy to find them on me and get rid of them before they do much damage. I really feel for blokes with heaps of fur though. They have to go on tick prevention meds.

  9. it’s a clever way to plant bushes and plants that ticks will not like. we have no ticks in our area… and even the mama stopped her complaining about the 364 rainy days per year, if it keeps the ticks away then we can be super happy… and super wet :o)

  10. Fortunately we don’t have a big tick problem, here. Not so sure about the State of Victoria but here in our little corner of the world, it is not a great problem. However, we do get the odd infestation so it is always best to be aware and watch your Associate for any change in behaviour. Mainly Benji and I keep to the roadway. We very rarely go bush these days. And if I did take him out bush I would see my vet for a repellent – just in case.

    1. I think you guys down under may have other maladies equally as serious, if not worse. Continue to stay safe with sweet Benji. I hear staying on the roadway is the better option for staying safe. 😉

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