Tick Time


Spring to early summer is peak Paralysis Tick season. The paralysis tick is only one of a large number of ticks that can be found in Australia, but they are the ones that cause the most problem for humans and pets alike.

Ticks On Dogs
Ticks On Dogs

The adult female paralysis tick can attach itself to a dog, cat or human and burrow its mouthparts into the skin. The tick then injects a toxic fluid into the host to allow it to suck the blood of the host. Ticks start out quite small about the size of a pin head, but quickly grow to the size of a small pea as they suck the blood of their host.

Most pets show little in the way of paralysis symptoms for the first few days that a tick is attached, but the longer the tick remains, the greater the severity of symptoms and the more life threatening it becomes. If your pet shows signs of weakness of the legs, vomiting or dry retching, and/or difficulty with breathing, search all over their body for a tick. Ticks can hide between the pads of feet, in skin folds around the mouth and ears.

Remove the tick when you find it with either a tick lever (available from pet shops or your vet) or by simply pulling it straight out with your fingers or tweezers. Contact your vet or after hours emergency vet as soon as possible, as your pet will need professional treatment for the poison in its blood.