Ticks, fleas & worms….’tis the season for pesky parasites!
“It’s around this time of year that many pets will be affected by parasites,” Nadia Crighton from Pet Insurance Australia says. “Keeping up with the basic prevention is vital in ensuring your pet stays healthy and disease free.”
Paralysis ticks are the deadliest with many Australian dogs and cats being killed each year after being infected. Areas once thought safe from this tick are also seeing an increase in cases.
“Tick prevention is vital for all dogs and cats living in paralysis tick zones,” Crighton says. “Keeping this type of medication up-to-date is very important, as too, seeking the advice from your local vet who can best advise if your area has recently become a tick zone.”
The good news is claims for ticks is slightly down from the previous years. However, these numbers could coincide with the much hotter and drier weather conditions over winter in the Eastern States of Australia.
“We are around 123 tick claims down from this time last year,” Crighton says. “Any reduction in these types of claims is great news. But could also indicate that the amount of ticks hatching has declined due to the warmer winter weather.”
There is also an indication that tick prevention is on the rise.
“We’ve seen around 10,000 additional claims for preventative treatments this year compared to last,” Crighton says. “This includes worms and fleas alongside ticks, but it’s a great indication that pet owners are seeing the importance of being proactive in preventing these conditions in their pets.”
If you are considering traveling to a known tick zone, seeking advice on prevention is recommended to alleviate any incidents that can leave your pet sick.
“Many pet owners get caught out when travelling with their pets to tick zones,” Crighton warns. “It’s always best to call ahead and check with the areas local vet in regard to common local problems that can include paralysis ticks.”
Fleas can also cause headaches for pets and owners around this time of year.
“Fleas can be a tricky one as many pet owners allow their pets prevention to drop off during the cooler months,” Crighton says. “Because of this the pesky flea can catch some unprepared pet owners out during the warmer months.”
The main concern with fleas is that infestations can be difficult to eradicate from the pet’s environment, not to mention the immense amount of discomfort to the pet cause by these blood sucking critters.
“Flea allergies are also quite prominent and it only takes one wee bite to cause a pet immense amount of on-going discomfort,” Crighton says. “Prevention can prevent many flea headaches, and is particularly important for pets who suffer from allergies.”
Using these products all year around or just during the warmer months can help prevent flea allergies and ensure the flea cycle is broken in your home. Treatments are easy to use and purchase. They can be as simple as a few drops on the back of your pet or even using a collar. Chat with your local supplier or vet to find the treatment best for your pet.
“For many pet households, fleas can become a bit of a problem during the summer months,” she says. “These little critters are amazing wingless jumpers and can impressively launch themselves 18cm up…and 33cm across.”
With many homes expecting puppies and kittens around this time of year it’s a good idea to have your worming prevention on-hand and up-to-date.
“Worms are very common in young pups and they can pass them onto your existing animals,” Crighton warns. “keeping all of the household pets up-to-date with their needed worming treatments is a good idea when welcoming a new addition.”