It’s getting warmer outside, and, no doubt, your pet is going out more, enjoying the warmth and sunshine! The downside is that pets are now being exposed more to common things like Lyme disease. Lyme disease is a very common occurrence, especially to pets. Ticks seem to ALWAYS be there causing it, so it is a good thing to know the facts about Lyme disease and how to treat it.
Lyme disease is mainly just a bacterial infection. It obviously is given to your pet from ticks. More specifically, it comes from two types of ticks – the Western black-legged tick and the deer tick. Lyme disease is given to your pet when the tick bites and latches onto your pet. The infection then goes from the tick’s mouth into your dog’s or cat’s bloodstream.
The most common signs of Lyme Disease are the following: lameness or shifting leg lameness reluctance to move, arthritis, joint swelling, joint pain, fever, loss of appetite, flu-like symptoms, swollen lymph nodes, platelet abnormalities, rare heart arrhythmias, and kidney failure in severe cases.
The simplest and best way to treat Lyme Disease is to just take your pet to the vet. An antibiotic, called doxycycline, is the most common treatment in these cases, and will probably be given.
The way to prevent your pet from getting Lyme Disease is simply this: do your best to prevent them from getting ticks. It is difficult and probably nearly impossible to do so; but Lyme Disease takes up to 24-48 hours to be transmitted. With this knowledge, frequent checks for ticks are necessary. They are mostly found near the ears, thighs, belly, and toes, but be sure to be thorough. When trying to pull the tick off, the important key is to get the entire head off, detaching the mouth. Using tweezers is a common method.
Be sure to do more research on this topic, and other important health topics such as this. Doing so will continue to keep you and your pet healthy and happy!
By Staff Writer – Erika Smith