How Can I Protect My Dog or Cat Against Tick Paralysis in Emmett, ID; Signs of Ticks & More

Ticks commonly attach themselves to our furry friends. They will frequently use our pets as hosts as they drink the blood of animals and humans to satisfy their blood lust. Not only are these nasty critters, who are actually apart of the arachnid family, known for plaguing our pets, but they are also recognized for spreading diseases and tick-borne illnesses. Babesiosis, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF), Ehrlichiosis, Powassan (POW) Virus, Disease, Human Anaplasmosis (HA), Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness (STARI) and Tularemia are such examples of the diseases and illnesses. In an effort to help pet owners be more aware of potential threats that ticks can pose, we at Pestcom Pest Management would like to briefly relate an account that happened not too long in the northwest part of the U.S.

Case Study of Tick Paralysis in a Dog

Returning home from a camping trip, a couple had noticed changes in their 10 yr old sheltie. Different behaviors started to manifest within a week’s time; their pet became lethargic, extremely weak, and would only eat if hand fed. Because of the abnormal and disturbing symptoms their beloved sheltie was displaying, the couple was naturally concerned and rushed to the vet. From blood work, urinalysis, and X-rays, the vet was mystified as to what was going on. Their adored sheltie was completely paralyzed as the days continued and everyone was feeling helpless when eating and bathroom needs were being met with medical technology. As the sheltie’s rapid deterioration continued and with no diagnosis, treatment, or signs of improvement, the couple had to consider the tough choice of putting their furry friend down. A vet student, during the final exam, wanted to give some sort of comfort to the suffering dog and naturally gave a little scratch behind the ear. In so doing, the student found feasting on the sheltie’s blood, an engorged tick. The realization of tick paralysis finally became known to what was the cause of the dog’s suffering. Tick paralysis is rare and affects the nervous system because the specific species of ticks’ saliva contaminates the dogs system over time. The tick still managed to attach itself even though the sheltie was wearing a tick collar. His owners were summoned to the vet hospital for a happy reunion as once the tick was removing, the sheltie recovered almost overnight.

Signs Your Dog or Coat Has Tick Paralysis

Though rare, tick paralysis should be something all dog owners should learn to recognize the symptoms. One or more ticks can trigger symptoms, which will start to show within 6-9 days after the tick has attached. Early symptoms of tick paralysis include:
– Weakness, particularly in the hind legs
– Vomiting
– Unsteadiness
– Regurgitation
– Poor reflexes to complete loss of reflex
– Partial loss of muscle movements
– Megaesophagus, or an enlarged esophagus
– Low muscle tone
– High blood pressure
– Fast heart rate and rhythm (tachyarrhythmias)
– Excessive drooling
– Excessive dilatation of pupils
– Disorder of voice
– Difficulty in eating
– Complete loss of muscle movement, or paralysis ( generally in advanced stages)
– Asphyxia due to respiratory muscle paralysis in severely affected animals

Tick Infestation Removal

In the event you believe your pet has succumbed to tick paralysis, take it to a vet immediately and explain the symptoms. In addition to medical attention, contact Pestcom Pest Management to have your home and property treated for ticks to ensure there are no other ticks or viable eggs are present. Contact us today.


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