Coun­try Mouse

Don’t get ticked off

Country Life Every Week - - Town & Country -

IN a study by Bris­tol Univer­sity, ticks were found on al­most a third of dogs last year. The sam­ple of 15,000 dogs across the UK high­lights a con­cern that many in the coun­try­side have been aware of for years: there has been an ex­plo­sion in tick num­bers. This mat­ters be­cause ticks act as a car­rier for a num­ber of dis­eases and par­a­sites, which can be fa­tal to dogs.

Lyme dis­ease can be trans­mit­ted by a bite of a tick and can cause se­ri­ous health prob­lems for hu­mans, in­clud­ing menin­gi­tis and heart fail­ure. I have a game­keeper friend who was ill for al­most a year, with the dis­ease af­fect­ing his ner­vous sys­tem be­fore he re­cov­ered.

We need to take ticks more se­ri­ously and that in­volves check­ing your dog over af­ter a walk, es­pe­cially if it’s been through wood­land or moor­land, which are strongholds for ticks. If one gets on to you, it should be taken se­ri­ously and not dis­missed. They’re easy to re­move by grasp­ing the tick with a pair of tweez­ers as close to the skin as pos­si­ble and then pulling up­wards with a steady, even pres­sure. Af­ter­wards, bathe the area in rub­bing al­co­hol, an io­dine scrub or soap and wa­ter. MH

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