Like Lyme disease, Piroplasmosis is transmitted by ticks. Every year, as soon as Spring returns (and with it, ticks) a number of dogs contract this infection which destroys red blood cells and can prove to be fatal.
Symptoms of Piroplasmosis
The symptoms are generally clearly identifiable. They can arise between four and eight days after a bite by a tick carrying the parasite.
- your dog has lost his appetite
- he is acting lethargic
- he is vomiting and has a fever
- urination is an abnormal colors, typically red, orange or dark brown
It's essential to take your canine to the veterinarian as soon as possible, as it's the only way to assure a reliable diagnosis.
How to prevent it
Use a collar or anti-parasite spray
You can use a specific product adapted to stop ticks from attaching to your dog's fur (these products should be tested on a small area 24 hours ahead of time, in case of an allergic reaction). In addition to this anti-tick treatment, you can also think about investing in an anti-tick collar containing an active ingredient which can protect your pooch for six months.
It's also been proven that apple cider vinegar is a natural anti-flea and tick treatment. It's acidic taste helps keep away parasites. Spraying it onto your dog's fur can keep them at a distance.
Keep your dog's coat short and well-brushed
If your dog has a long coat, keep it trimmed and brushed to discourage the ticks from biting and will make the detection of them easier.
Check for ticks after every walk
Avoid going for walks in areas infested by ticks, particularly in Spring and Summer. It takes 18 hours for a contaminated ticks to infect your dog, so check his fur after every walk.
Look carefully around the toes, in ears, between legs, in armpits, around the neck and any bumps on the skin. Use a small comb. You can also check out our 11 surefire tips to prevent and get rid of ticks.
How to treat it?
If your dog is infected, there is treatment. It works well if it's caught early, from the first symptoms. A vaccine is also available but unfortunately it's not 100% effective and is often expensive. Prevention is the best remedy.
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