Over the next few weeks we’re going to talk about the different types of ticks that are found in Southern Ontario.
The newest arrival to the area is the Lone Star tick. As a result of climate change they have made their way to Canada, arriving in just the past couple of years.
You have probably already heard that this tick causes a red meat allergy in humans because of their bite. They carry a sugar molecule in their saliva (commonly known as Alpha-Gal) which causes the infected human to respond with antibodies to attack this molecule. This can cause a serious allergic reaction when eating meat, in which the Alpha-Gal sugar molecule is abundant.
Fortunately for our four-legged friends, this meat allergy isn’t a concern, but the spread of Ehrlichiosis is. It’s a bacterial infection spread by these ticks that can manifest with symptoms such as fever, swollen lymph nodes, lethargy and bleeding disorders.
Fortunately for you as a pet owner, we can screen your pet for two types of Ehrlichiosis when running your pet’s annual heartworm test.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is an old adage that still holds true. We carry flea and tick products that are easy and safe to use. Some are given orally and some are applied topically and can be used in conjunction with your dog’s heartworm prevention.
Please call us if you have any questions about ticks, or preventative products, or to book your appointment for a Snap 4DX plus heartworm test. It’s a simple blood test that is run in-clinic and we can have results within 10 minutes.