Ticks are a horrible insect for dogs and humans alike. The difference being that dogs cannot check themselves for ticks so you will have to do this for them, especially if he just went for a walk around a forested area. Ticks like to hide in the trees on branches waiting for a victim to get within its range then take a rid on them while getting a snack. The worst part about ticks though is the way they also spread Lyme disease which can be deadly.


How to Check For Ticks

There is no really fast or easy way to check for ticks. Sometimes you will accidentally find one when you are petting your dog, however, most of the time this is only after they have already fed off your dogs blood and become engorged. Every other week at least you will want to start separating your dogs fur and poking about looking for any ticks. If you do happen to find one then chances are your dog could have more so check them twice.


What Ticks Look Like

Dog ticks are usually very flat and brown. Once they engorged on your dogs blood though then they will get more of a gray color and will look a little more like a bean. They have four small legs on each side of their body near their mouth.


There is also the deer tick, which can and will hop on your dog as well. They are the ones that are known to carry Lyme disease, which is bad enough. However, they are also much smaller and thus even harder to find. This is why prevention is the best practice when it comes to ticks.


How to Remove a Tick

First you have to get some fine tipped tweezers. Get the smallest ones possible, because you don't want to risk squeezing the ticks body and releasing bacteria into your dogs blood stream, This could be harmful to it.


The first thing you want to do is use the tweezers and grab the tick by the head, right where they are biting on the skin. This can be hard if they are not engorged in blood, so be careful. Now that you have a firm hold on the head of the tick you want to pull straight back. Do not twist as you are pulling, you don't want to leave anything behind. Once the tick is removed stick it in a cup of alcohol, this will kill it. Do not try to flush it down the toilet, they can survive this.


Once the tick is removed you want to make sure your dog doesn't get an infection by using some disinfectant ointment. Hopefully that will take care of any germs that the tick may have spread. Remember to wash your hands and keep an eye on the place where the tick was. If anything gets inflamed or changes color to the point of alarm to call your vet.