Have we really thought about ticks…really? These creepy little mites are everywhere! And their presence can linger longggggg after a bite. Ticks pose a large risk to pets and people because of the diseases they can transmit (Lyme, Ehrlichia, Anaplasma, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, among so many others). Some of these nasty infections can lead to fevers, joint pain, kidney damage, immune mediated issues, and in severe cases hospitalization and death!

A tick’s main purpose in life is to survive. They have been around millions of years and have developed the ability to perpetuate and thrive. They quietly wait in waiting ‘questing’ to find their next victim. They can sense motion, vibrations, and even body odors!

Once on skin, they attach and start feeding on blood. Depending on the lifecycle and the type of tick, they may acquire disease, or even transmit while attached. In Georgia, some of the common ticks we worry about include the Lone Star Tick, American dog tick, and black legged tick.

Now, let’s think about our goals for ticks and how to keep them from infesting and infecting our beloved pets. Our goal- LIMIT BITES THAT CAN LEAD TO TRANSMISSION AND SPREAD OF DISEASE! Sounds easier said than done.

In regard to humans, there are many options to reduce our exposure to these pests. I urge you to visit the CDC Website for an exhaustive list of preventative measures!

For pets, the best ways we can achieve this is by proactive preventative measures. And the best method is PREVENTATIVE MEDICATIONS. We are lucky in the veterinary field that pharmaceutical companies have developed safe and effective products that are meant to decrease disease transmission and reduce infestations from these nasty critters. There are effective and safe oral options, topical options, and even collars.

At PHAH, we aim to provide a detailed plan for each pet that is specific for their needs and lifestyle. For that reason, there is no one size fits all approach to recommending products, but instead a discussion that allows us as a Veterinary Team, and you the client to figure out the best approach.

Some of the products we use and prescribe at PHAH include, but are not limited to:

  • Simparica Trio
  • Credelio
  • Revolution Plus
  • Bravecto

Please reach out to us with any questions or specific concerns you may have. Thank you and take care!

Dr. Mark Belyeu