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All posts from lyme disease:

Lyme Disease

The US Center for Disease Control recommends the following for preventing tick and lyme disease on pets.

Dogs are very susceptible to tick bites and tickborne diseases. Vaccines are not available for all the tickborne diseases that dogs can get, and they don’t keep the dogs from bringing ticks into your home. For these reasons, it’s important to use a tick preventive product on your dog.

Tick bites on dogs may be hard to detect. Signs of tickborne disease may not appear for 7-21 days or longer after a tick bite, so watch your dog closely for changes in behavior or appetite if you suspect that your pet has been bitten by a tick.

To reduce the chances that a tick will transmit disease to you or your pets:

  • Check your pets for ticks daily, especially after they spend time outdoors.
  • If you find a tick on your dog, remove it right away.
  • Ask your veterinarian to conduct a tick check at each exam.
  • Talk to your veterinarian about tickborne diseases in your area.
  • Reduce tick habitat in your yard(https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/prev/in_the_yard.html).
  • Talk with your veterinarian about using tick preventives on your pet. 

Note: Cats are extremely sensitive to a variety of chemicals. Do not apply any insect acaricides or repellents to your cats without first consulting your veterinarian!

To learn more, go to: https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/prev/on_pets.html

Opossums…friend or foe?

possums on a branch

 

Opossums…friend or foe?

 

Before everyone shouts "FOE!", consider this:  Opossums are one of our greatest allies in the war on ticks.  No, really!  The diet of the opossum include snakes, snails, slugs, mice, rats and carrion…and TICKS.  Their appetite for the tick is practically insatiable.  It is estimated that one opossum consumes up to 5,500 ticks in a single week. (We did not add an extra zero on to that number.  It really is 5,500 ticks per week!) Ticks transmit Lyme disease which affects around 300,000 Americans every year.  While you may think that the lowly opossum basically knocks over trash cans in the dark and likely carries rabies, think again.  Opossums are rarely found to be rabid and if the price to pay for tick control is a tipped trash can every once in a while, then perhaps we should consider that a fair exchange.  The DFW Wildlife Coalition sums it up nicely:

"When left alone, the opossum does not attack pets or other wildlife; he does not chew yhour telephone or electric wires, spread disease, dig up your flower bulbs or turn over your trash cans.  On the contrary, the opossum does a great service in insect, venomous snake, and rodent control.  He takes as his pay only what he eats and maybe a dry place to sleep.  The possum tolerates other pets, our cars, prodding sticks, rocks and brooms.  'Attacks' by possums are simply non-existent.  When he gets too close or accidentally moves into your attic space, he can be easily convinced to move along.  If you are lucky enough to have one of these guys around, you can rest assured he is cleaning up what he can and will soon move along to help someone else."

Want to learn more?  Read the whole article at the Inquisitor here:  http://www.inquisitr.com/2106782/opossums-the-unsung-heroes-against-lyme-disease-and-other-tick-borne-diseases/ and cut the opossum a break.  He is more than likely doing much more good than harm!

How is Lyme disease transmitted?

In the USA, the bacteria are transmitted to people and animals by the bite of an infected blacklegged tick, Ixodes scapularis, commonly called the deer tick, and Ixodes pacificus (western black legged tick) in the West. Although other types of ticks such as the Dermancentor variabilis (american dog) and some insects have been shown to carry the Lyme bacteria, to date, transmission of Lyme through those vectors has not been proven.  Note: Other tick borne disease have been transmitted though the blood supply.
 
To learn more about Lyme Disease, go to: http://www.lymediseaseassociation.org/index.php/about-lyme

Lyme Disease

What is Lyme Disease? Veterinarians are asked this question regularly.  It is a very serious disease.  Please contact us to learn about how your pet can be protected.

Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted  to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic skin rash called erythema migrans. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system. Lyme disease is diagnosed based on symptoms, physical findings (e.g., rash), and the possibility of exposure to infected ticks.  Laboratory testing is helpful if used correctly and performed with validated methods. Most cases of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with a few weeks of antibiotics. Steps to prevent  Lyme disease include using insect repellent, removing ticks promptly, applying pesticides, and reducing tick habitat. The ticks that transmit Lyme disease can occasionally transmit other tickborne diseases as well.

To read more, go to: (http://www.cdc.gov/lyme/transmission/index.html)

What is Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic skin rash called erythema migrans. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system. Lyme disease is diagnosed based on symptoms, physical findings (e.g., rash), and the possibility of exposure to infected ticks; laboratory testing is helpful if used correctly and performed with validated methods. Most cases of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with a few weeks of antibiotics. Steps to prevent Lyme disease include using insect repellent, removing ticks promptly, applying pesticides, and reducing tick habitat. The ticks that transmit Lyme disease can occasionally transmit other tickborne diseases as well.

To learn more, go to: www.cdc.gov/lyme/