Mar 12 2017

Tick Prevention Options Update – March 2017

Tick season is upon us again.

Or at least, it will soon be in “full swing”, as ticks start ‘questing’ or looking for prey (US, our DOGS, and CATS!) as soon as the air temperature climbs above 4 degrees Celsius! Along with these ticks come conversations about what is or isn’t effective in keeping them off of our pets. Add the fact that every few years a new tick-borne disease seems to emerge—it’s not just about Lyme disease anymore— and the concern about keeping them away rises proportionately.

IF you are concerned about Lyme disease in your family & pets – Sunnyview is recommending the consideration of a 4-pronged approach to Tick management: 1) Check your pet for Ticks Daily, 2) Use a Veterinary-Approved Tick Prevention Product, 3) If you have seen a tick on yourself or your pets in the past year – please consider testing your dog (or cat) for Lyme Disease, 4) Consider Lyme vaccination for your dog. Lyme vaccination without Tick Prevention is not recommended.

On the whole, the news is good. Since the relatively recent appearance of oral as well as topical tick (& flea) preventative treatments such as fluralaner or afoxolaner (Bravecto® or Nexgard®), or imidacloprid/permethrin combination (e.g. Advantix®), it has become easier to control Ticks & Fleas (fun fact: ticks are arachnids—like spiders—NOT insects or “bugs”). Note that we say “easier to control.” Putting a product on your pet does not relieve an owner of the need to be vigilant!

Sunnyview is changing our recommendation for the use of selamectin (eg. Revolution®), as it is very effective against the Brown Dog Tick, but not so when it comes to the Deer Tick (aka Black-Legged Tick) that carries Lyme Disease. Instead we recommend the products listed earlier – Advantix, Bravecto, & Nexgard – which also treat your pet for fleas. We still recommend monthly deworming as well, based on the results of your pet’s annual fecal test of course.

The take-home: Use these products according to label (read it!) and veterinary instructions. Remember: DRUGS APPROVED FOR DOGS MAY BE TOXIC TO CATS.

The GREAT NEWS, there is a veterinary-approved Tick Preventative FOR CATS!!! from ‘Merck’ expected in Canada later this year!

drjeff | ,