No one likes the thought of these nasty little creatures crawling on us or our pets. There is a hard reality we must face: ticks are here to stay and transmit a very large number of diseases. Ticks are formidable opponents: they can withstand low and high temperatures (if its over 40 degrees – ticks are active), the endemic area for many tick species is expanding, we are finding more and more diseases that ticks carry, and ticks are more difficult to kill than many other parasites.
What to do about these nasty little buggers? Thankfully, we do have some great tools to fight ticks and decrease the likelihood they will transmit diseases to our pets. There are many products available that tout a great tick kill but very few that deliver on that promise. Since ticks transmit so many diseases, it is imperative that we are proactive with tick control for our pets. Our favorite tick products for dogs at Southfork Animal Hospital are Nexgard and Frontline Plus. Both of these products work well for both fleas and ticks. Frontline Plus is a topical medication that is applied to the skin once a month. It has been a standard flea and tick product for years and worked well. Nexgard is an oral product given once monthly and comes in a chewable, flavored tablet. Nexgard has been on the market for about two years and has gotten rave reviews! It has a slightly faster tick kill than Frontline Plus and dogs love the taste. Nexgard is only for dogs; it cannot be administered to cats.
Cats tend to have fewer problems with ticks in general because of their fastidious grooming habits. Most cats remove ticks as they groom themselves. In spite of this, cats are still susceptible to tick-borne diseases and should be on Frontline Plus to prevent flea infestations and aid in tick control.
Ticks ARE a threat to all of us. Thankfully, we’ve got some great products to help our dogs and cats lessen their risk for the tick-borne disease. This little fact bears repeating – ticks are active any time the temperature rises above 40 degrees, this includes those “warm” days in the middle of winter. The Companion Animal Parasite Council recommends year-round parasite control for all pets (this includes heartworm preventative, intestinal parasite control, and flea/tick control). TICKS ARE OUT NOW – GET YOUR PET ON FRONTLINE PLUS OR NEXGARD!
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