What If My Dog Has Lyme Disease

What If My Dog Has Lyme Disease – What are the clinical signs of Lyme disease? 95% of dogs are asymptomatic. In the acute form, dogs may experience transient fever, loss of appetite, depression, and variable lameness. The joints closest to the tick bite are the first to be affected. Chronic pain seen in humans does not occur in dogs. The lymph nodes above the tick bite may become enlarged. Lyme nephritis is rare and often fatal. This form is more common in Shetland Sheepdogs, Labs and Goldens.

About the tick: In the spring (+4 degrees), the tick becomes active, and the female tick lays a group of about 2000 eggs. The 6-legged larva hatches and searches for a host. Because the larva is small, it often attaches itself to a small host, such as a white-footed mouse. If the mouse carries the Lyme disease spirochete, the larva becomes infected at this time. The larva feeds until it is full of blood, then drops off and hibernates for about 1 year until the following spring. The following spring, the larva molts and turns into a nymph. A nymph is larger than a larva, so it may choose a larger host, but it may still choose a different mouse. This nymph feeds for 3-5 days, then collapses and sleeps, but this time only until the end of summer. At the end of summer, it molts and turns into a large tick. This adult tick will seek out a larger host such as a deer, dog or human. If these adult ticks mate on new hosts and carry the Lyme spirochete, they feed on and transmit it. This larger tick must secrete enzymes to maintain blood flow and prevent the host’s blood from clotting. Only at this stage can they transmit Lyme disease to their host.

What If My Dog Has Lyme Disease

How long does it take to contract Lyme disease? This process can take 24-48 hours, so if the tick is removed before feeding during this time, the spirochete will not be transmitted to the host.

Everything You Should Know About Lyme Disease In Dogs

My dog ​​has ticks!! The 4DX test is discussed when the owner calls or comes to the dog with ticks. This tick, although small, did not carry Lyme disease, but we now know the dog lives in the tick zone and this is not his first tick, and after discussion, another 4Dx should be checked at the appropriate time. Vet with you. If the tick is large, it may have fed enough to transmit Lyme disease and should be examined 6 weeks after tick removal. Depending on when the dog was exposed, there may or may not be symptoms of Lyme disease.

Lyme positive in 4DX, now what? The best course of action is to recommend a QC6 test at an Idexx lab. This tests the level (number) of antibodies against the C6 peptide (a unique surface antigen). This gives an accurate antibody count. Vaccines do not contain this peptide, so vaccines do not affect this level. If treatment is needed, we have a way to monitor the response to treatment. Some people do not tolerate this test, so we continue to treat if symptoms are present. Even if you had a positive result, this test should not be done until 6 weeks after the tick bite.

Products? This year we are all set to use a combination of Nexgard and Heartgard. Some pets have purchased other products in the past and we may still use/order those products. For example, Advantix users should be questioned during product distribution – do you own a cat, are you pregnant/nursing, have young children, are you immunocompromised? If the owner answered yes to any of these questions, this is not the product for them. If you have additional questions about ticks and the diseases they carry, or if you are concerned about your pet, please contact our office. As much as we love our furry friends, we all have to face the fact that owning pets increases the chances of tick bites. Mainly because our pets walk outside and then allow ticks to hitchhike back to where we live.

A recent study found that households with pets are twice as likely to have crawling ticks than households without pets. [1] Yes!

Ticks & Lyme Disease

I recently took my daughter’s dog to our vet, Timothy Bell, DVM, for a checkup. I took the opportunity to ask a few questions.

My vet personally uses NexGard on his dogs. Dr. Bell says, “NexGard does not actually protect your dog from all tick-borne diseases. “The tick has to bite the dog before the active ingredients kill the tick.” Unfortunately, as we all know, some pathogens are contagious within hours. (I’ll talk about products and how to control ticks below.)

He advises: “Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security about flea or tick control. Still need to watch for symptoms. If I’m going hiking or camping, where I know my dog ​​will be more exposed to ticks, I’ll use a topical spray or collar that repels and kills ticks.”

Many tests for tick-borne diseases are prone to false negatives, especially in the early stages of the disease, Dr. Bell said. For example, a dog with Rocky Mountain Spots may develop a fever and become very ill. – Whether I see a tick or not, if the dog has symptoms, I will give him doxycycline.

Lyme Disease: What Is Lyme Disease, Its Symptoms, Causes And Treatment. Read All About It

Although Lyme is the most common tick-borne disease, tick-borne paralysis is common in my part of California (the central coast). Tick-borne paralysis is a fatal disease caused when certain types of ticks inject neurotoxins from their salivary glands into a warm-blooded animal or human. [2]

Dr. Bell explains, “With tick paralysis, the dog becomes weak, wobbly, and unable to walk quickly. – If the tick is not removed, the paralysis will eventually affect the dog’s respiratory system. Products like NexGard offer good protection against tick paralysis.

The best part of our vet visit was that we were in and out the door within 45 minutes. During this time they tested our dog for many blood borne pathogens and intestinal parasites. They also updated their vaccinations against many preventable diseases and refilled their prescriptions for tick-repellent medications. (See the American Kennel Club’s complete guide to the recommended vaccination schedule here)

Although dogs increase our risk of disease by bringing ticks into the home, a new study shows how they can warn us about the dangers of Lyme disease.

Can Dogs Get Sick From Ticks?

CDC reporting criteria are so restrictive that many cases of human Lyme disease are not reported on CDC maps. This has led to the misconception that Lyme is only found in the northeastern United States.

In fact, the threat of Lyme disease is everywhere. The Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC) is an independent council of veterinarians, parasitologists and animal health professionals. Since 2002, he has been studying the prevalence of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases in dogs.

Christopher Carpenter, DVM and executive director of CAPC, said CAPC’s latest research “suggests that man’s best friend will continue to protect people as a sentinel at high risk for Lyme disease.” “The model built in this study breaks new ground for providing county-level mapping to help residents, travelers, and health officials identify areas at risk across the country.” [3]

By mapping the distribution of Lyme disease in dogs, researchers can predict where the risk to humans is highest. Check out CAPC’s interactive map here to see where your risk is highest for the three most common tick-borne diseases (Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, ehrlichiosis). Click on your state, zoom in on your area, then use the drop-down box to scroll through three different diseases reported in the past eight years.

Lyme Disease In Dogs: What You Need To Know

Since pets cannot tell when they are sick, it is best to avoid tick bites. As Dr. Bell says, “Even if your area doesn’t have the highest infection rates, you want to protect yourself when your pet gets sick.”

There is a huge list of products for dogs, but not all of them are safe for cats. Talk to your vet about which product is best for your pet. Since my husband keeps bees, we decided to go with NexGard for our dogs. Some topical products are great at killing and killing ticks and fleas, but can harm pollinators – my family is very careful.

After visiting the vet, I contacted Thomas Mather, director of the University of Rhode Island’s Vector Disease and TickEncounter Resource Center. He is known as “Tick Boy”. I will talk about what I learned in my next blog.

LymeSci Written by Lonnie Marcum, Licensed Physical Therapist and Mom.

Pet Shed Says No To Lyme Disease

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