Did you find on your German shepherd a dog tick and you don’t know what to do? Can too many dog ticks kill your shepherd? Do you want to know how to protect your German shepherd from dog ticks? In this blog post, we will try to cover everything about that little devil by name: “dog tick”.
What is a dog trick?
Ticks are eight-legged parasites that bite your dog to drink their blood. Their size varies from about 1mm to 1cm long. Ixodes hexagonus is the largest species of tick on the planet.
You can find dog ticks mostly in forests, parks with a lot of green space, or even in your house, and because of their size, it is very difficult to spot them. They are active throughout the year, but they are most active during spring and summer. They can jump or fly, they use the legs to climb or drop onto your shepherd’s coat.
How do I know when my German Shepherd has ticks?
There is no easy way to know that, you must run your hands over your shepherd’s body. Luckily, ticks are big enough to spot them. When you feel lumps or bumps over your shepherd’s coat, this is a good sight that you find dog ticks.
The places where the largest number of ticks are located are: on ears and in-ears, neck, near the mouth and under the eyes, on the top of the back, and sometimes, you can find dog tick under the dog paws or between the nails!
More often brushing your dog’s coat can help you during the “ticks season” to remove them, and be sure to inspect your dog off dog ticks after a walk in the woods or park.
Why should I protect my German Shepherd against Ticks?
If you’re living in an area where can be lots of dog ticks, it’s a good idea to protect your shepherd, and yourself, from ticks. You can use a tick treatment that will either repel ticks or kill them if they attach.
Some of the best products for German Shepherd protection from dog ticks are NexGard, Bravecto, Seresto by Bayer, Adams Shampoo, Vet’s Best Home Spray, Sentry Fiproguard Plus, Frontline Plus… These are some of the best, we don’t say that only these products can protect your shepherd from dog ticks.
It’s a good idea to consult your vet about what treatment is the best for your shepherd.
While dog ticks drink the blood of your dog, they also can, unfortunately, infect your shepherd with various diseases. The two most common diseases are Lyme disease and Babesiosis.
About Lyme disease
Lyme disease is a serious bacterial infection. It’s caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and rarely, Borrelia mayonii. Many animals, including dogs, can have Lyme disease and show no signs. In dogs, the most common signs include fever, loss of appetite, painful or swelling joints.
You can here check our blog post about “10 Common German Shepherd Health Problems”
“I noticed these symptoms and I find a tick on my dog, what should I do?”
First, don’t panic. You can treat Lyme disease in dogs. The general treatment of this disease is with antibiotics, at a dosage of 10mg/kg PO q12h to q24H for 30 days (American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine). But first, visit your vet! He will decide what’s the best way to treat this disease.
Canine babesiosis is a tick-borne disease that can cause varying degrees of hemolytic anemia, splenomegaly, thrombocytopenia, and fever. They also can cause dog depression, have pale gums, lose appetite and their skin may become yellowish. Babesiosis is treatable, even curable, but the best strategy is prevention.
The FDA approved treatment for babesiosis is imidocarb diproprionate. Combination therapy of quinine, azithromycin, atovaquone, and/or clindamycin is being researched and may become more common to treat dogs in the US or Canada in the future.
Babesiosis is still a new disease. The first-ever cases of dogs being treated for the disease, caused by this bacteria, Babesia, were reported in March 2016
How to remove a tick from my German shepherd safely?
It’s very important to remove dog tick as soon as possible when you notice them because dog ticks carry diseases.
This can be tricky because the average size of dog ticks is about 3/16 Inches (~4.7mm). You must be careful, you don’t want to squeeze the tick’s body, or allow its head to get stuck inside your shepherd! If tick’s blood expels back into your dog, this can increase the risk of infection.
The best method is twisting them off your dog, and pet shops sell handy tick-removal devices to make this easier.
He got you covered. If you find a dog tick onto your German shepherd dog, and you must remove him by yourself, before you start, watch this amazing tutorial how to remove dog tick:
Can humans be bitten by dog ticks?
The ticks don’t think much about what their next victim is. The short answer is yes, you can be bitten. For humans it’s easier, we don’t have long dog hair, so it’s easy to spot them.
It’s a good idea to check yourself from dog ticks after a walk with your dog, or immediately get a shower.
Conclusion - Do Not Panic!
If you find a dog tick on your German shepherd, this doesn’t mean that he will get some disease. It is advisable to use additional tick protection during their season. After walking, take 5 minutes and check if your shepherd has any ticks. Ticks are certainly something which you would not want to see on yourself or your dog. But when you spot them, remove them as soon as possible or if you can't do it yourself, visit the nearest veterinarian.
All About Dog Ticks
We know how difficult and stressful can be when you notice a dog tick onto your German Shepherd dog, and that is why we decide to explore more about this topic.
In this tutorial your can learn almost everything about dog ticks!