Dogs can easily develop infestations of fleas or ticks. While it may not seem like that big of a deal, you should know that these infestations can lead to the development of some fatal illnesses in your dogs.
Here are some diseases that these pests can cause to your dogs:
If blood is lost in large quantities, your dog can end up getting anemia. It is a condition where the red blood cell count in the body decreases tremendously and it’s difficult for the critical organs to get oxygen supplied to them.
Fleas can drink the amount of blood that is 15 times their own weight. Thus, if your dog has a lot of fleas on it, it’s only a matter of time before it develops this condition. It is crucial that you treat this condition as soon as possible or prolonged oxygen shortage to the organs can cause tissue damage and in severe cases might even lead to death.
Flea Allergic Dermatitis
The saliva released by fleas causes a lot of irritation to the dogs. Often, it can even lead to their skin becoming hyper-sensitive to the components of the saliva.
Eventually, these dogs can be at risk of developing Flea Allergic Dermatitis (FAD) wherein, they will become very itchy even with a single flea bite as that would be enough to trigger an immune reaction. While this disease is not fatal, it still causes a lot of discomfort to the dog. Hence it is recommended to keep a backup of antiparasitic medicines like Nexgard chews for dogs by your side to avoid this serious discomfort in your dog.
Tick paralysis is a terrible condition that a dog can get into because it would be unable to move its body. If not treated properly in the initial stages, this disease can be fatal as the paralysis slowly spreads to the dog’s respiratory muscles which subsequently make breathing very difficult for them.
The initial signs you can watch out for would be that your dog is wagging its tail but is unable to raise its body. You must treat it and remove the paralysis-causing tick from its body immediately.
Babesiosis is quite difficult to spot as the signs are very discreet and consist of lethargy and mild fever which could often be mistaken by the owner to be caused simply by some minor infection. It is a disease transmitted by ticks and the treatment is not as easy as some of the other diseases as a complex dosage of several antibodies would be required to make the dog healthy again.
Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
This disease is also transmitted by ticks. In the initial stages, you’ll notice that the dog is a bit lethargic. Soon, it will have a mild fever that doesn’t go down for quite some time. Only once you get the blood work done and the dog appears to have a low red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets count, can it be confirmed that the dog is suffering from this disease.
Hemobartonellosis is a disease transmitted by fleas. In most cases, dogs that are generally healthy do not develop any symptoms and don’t actually fall sick.
However, for dogs that have had their spleens removed after some sort of accident, this disease can be a serious one and could even lead to death. If you have a dog who had its spleen removed at some time, you need to take some extra precautions to keep it free from fleas and avoid this condition.
Many humans get infected by Lyme Disease. Dogs too, get infected by it quite often. The disease is transmitted in dogs when a flea sucks a dog’s blood for about 24 hours.
However, about 90% of all the dogs that get infected with the disease never develop any symptoms and don’t fall sick at all. Or the other 10% that do get infected, early treatment is essential as it can lead to a serious kidney disease that causes them to lose a lot of their protein from their urine.
It’s pretty easy to avoid every single one of these diseases. All you have to do is ensure that your dog is safe from flea or tick infestation. In order to do so, you should keep them clean and in hygienic conditions. Comb their fur regularly to spot any fleas at the earlier stage. Also, make sure that you use various products available in the market that can prevent your dog from ticks and fleas.