Finding flea bites and ticks on your dog’s skin can indeed be annoying, but being annoyed is the least of your and your pooch’s concerns. The consequences of the infestation of these despicable insects can be a lot worse, health-wise.
Especially if your canine is allergic to flea saliva. In these cases one bite is enough to trigger a severe itch.
Also, fleas sometimes harbor another annoying creature – the tapeworm Dipylidium caninum. This means that a simple flea infestation may result in a tapeworm infestation as well, causing your pet to lose a lot of weight.
But the most hazardous health risk is anemia. “Because fleas drink your dog’s blood, a large number of them can cause anemia. In fact, dogs have died because of flea related blood loss.”
Ticks, on the other hand, are a complete different story and they can be much more hazardous to your beloved four-legged friend.
The thing is that the adult female paralysis tick, aka Ixodes holocyclus, injects a toxin during the act of feeding and this toxin causes an ascending paralysis.
“Often the first indication of a problem is that his bark will change pitch,” says Love That Pet. “He will seem a little wobbly on his back legs. The paralysis gradually moves forward to affect his forelegs and his breathing muscles. Tick paralysis can be fatal if not treated promptly.”
As for you as a dog owner, fleas will leave nothing more than a red itchy bite on your skin but they don’t usually bite humans. While ticks, on the other hand, can cause:
- itchy lumps
- allergic reactions
- can transmit some infectious diseases
- tick paralysis (but this happens rather rarely).