So I know nobody wants to find a tick on their dog ... but let's face it, ticks happen.
And don't be fooled into thinking your dog is safe because you use prevention. Nothing ... not even the prescription drugs ... is 100% tick proof.
OK, take a moment to prep for the ick factor. Now you can mentally prepare to get ready to learn how to keep your dog safe if he does pick up a tick.
First, let's review how these sneaky pests become attached to your dog.
If you don't remove ticks right away – or within a few hours ... their bodies engorge with blood they suck out of your dog's skin.
An engorged tick is harder to remove. If you can catch them quickly it's much easier.
So here are some techniques and tools to help you safely and painlessly remove ticks from your dog.
Step 1: This is the easiest method. It works well for engorged ticks. Apply a drop or two of the essential oil Palo Santo directly to the tick. This should kill it within a few minutes.
Alternatively, you could spray a small amount of alcohol on the tick. This will make it dizzy and it will immediately let go of its hold on your dog.
Step 2: Once the tick has loosened its grip, you need to remove it carefully and gently from the dog’s body. Be sure not to burst the tick, as it may carry disease.
Step 3: Remove all the ticks from your pet’s body. Afterwards put them into a jar with a couple of drops of Palo Santo or a good amount of alcohol. Dispose of the tick when it's dead.
Step 1: Gently grip your dog’s skin. Get a firm hold on the tick by pinching it. Then twist it in a counter-clockwise direction. You might need to apply a little pressure. This makes the tick dizzy and it will loosen its hold.
Step 2: Maintaining your grip on the tick, pull it out gently. Once you have it out you can crush it by pressing it between two newspaper sheets. Or you can flush it or put it in a jar with Palo Santo or alcohol (as above).
Step 1: Using a pair of pointed tweezers, grasp the tick as close to your dog's skin as you can.
Step 2: Once you have a good hold on it, wiggle the tweezers very gently to pull the tick out steadily. Don't twist or jerk the tweezers.
Don't tug hard or use pressure that will cause the tick to rupture or separate from its head.
Sometimes, part of the tick may remain embedded in your dog’s skin.
Don't try to extract it, as that can be painful for your dog. And don't worry about it. It'll eventually come out on its own.
A number of canine tick removal tools are available commercially. The tick keys and tick twisters are both great options to try. They're super-easy to use. I keep one on my key chain so I always have it if I spot a tick!
But If you're gentle and patient, you shouldn't really need these tools. With a bit of patience, the tick will give up and let go of your dog.
So don't panic! If a tick does attach to your dog you can remove it quickly. If you find that your dog's skin becomes really red and inflamed afterwards ... you can boost his immune system to help his body recover quicker.