[Yikes] Ticks to be a menace this year

May 20th, 2015 at 11:02 am EDT
Hello Friend,

Spring and ALL those lovely parasites are now among us..

So WHAT to do?

Common sense my dear pet lover..don't over react, and reach for the toxic spray.

In fact virtually ALL the common dog and cat health conditions can be treated holistically, especially when you use this as your guide..


CAPC predicts ticks to be a menace in 2015

Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis and other tick-borne diseases continue to spread; year-round parasite control urged for pets.


The Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC), a group that focuses on parasite research and education for veterinarians and pet owners, has released its annual parasite forecasts. These forecasts measure multiple data points to calculate the probability of four important parasite-transmitted diseases: Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, ehrlichiosis and heartworm. The forecasts show the threat of vector-borne diseases transmitted by ticks continues to be a year-round menace to both pets and pet owners.

For 2015, CAPC predicts the following risk areas for parasite-related diseases:

> Lyme disease is a high threat again this year in the New England and Mid-Atlantic states and continues to spread westward with a higher-than-average risk forecast for the Upper Ohio Valley area and the Pacific Northwest.

> Ehrlichiosis, another potentially fatal disease of dogs most common in the South, also appears to be a threat as far north as New England, as well as in far-reaching areas such as California and the Southern Plains states.

> Anaplasmosis is poised to be highly active in the Great Lakes states, and New England could have an especially challenging year.

> Heartworm disease, a potentially fatal disease transmitted by mosquitoes, remains a consistent threat to the health of dogs and cats in the warmer Sunbelt states. The forecast also predicts a higher-than-normal threat of heartworm infection in Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

SO what can you do?

Well one option is what the CAPC suggests...these well known veterinary topical/potentially toxic insecticides.

They are moderately effective for ticks, but have a variety of side effects.


Consider the widely used Frontline, with the insecticides of fipronil and methoprene

According to the Pet Poison Helpline Adverse reactions in dogs or cats resulting from misapplication can include skin effects such as irritation or redness; gastrointestinal problems such as vomiting or diarrhea; or more serious effects to the nervous system such as trembling, appearing depressed or seizures.

It is very difficult to find databases of reported side effects- the FDA advises reporting pesticides to the EPA which in turn has no published source of side effects.

Here are some additional side effects as reported from  'Fipronil 12 :Third Reevaluation - Report of the Hazard Identification Assessment Review Committee; HED Doc. No. 014400
; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Health Effects Division, U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 2000; pp 1-24'

  • Seizures and seizure-related death, changes in thyroid hormones, increased mass of the liver and thyroid, and kidney effects.
  • Endocrine disruption ( primary thyroid)
  • Carcinogen (increased incidence of benign and malignant follicular cell tumors in the thyroid gland

Common Sense

1. Check your dog regularly and remove ticks. Many of the conventional topicals don't rapidly kill ticks- the ticks still have time to spread the lyme organism before they die.

2. Keep the underbrush is your back yard to a minimum- ticks don't live on the grass

3. Consider a natural repellent, such as one using Cedar Oil spray. Be cautious with any essential oil, and lightly mist your dogs, then use a flea comb to spread it around.

4. Consider diatomaceous earth for ticks..this is a naturally occurring, soft, siliceous sedimentary rock that is easily crumbled into a fine white to off-white powder.

Completely safe

Can be sprinkled in your back yard, and ON your pets

I regularly use it in my garden for slugs.

One local Nelson person I talked to eats it himself (the food grade version), for parasite control..

Regardless, there are many additional options than the conventional insecticides....

Veterinary Secrets Pet of the Week!
We live on a rural property near Canberra Australia. Our 15 year old maltese terrier died of a heart condition and our other dog was very upset and so were we, so we  adopted two little dogs from the NSW Animal Welfare League - the two smaller dogs in the attached photo.

The bigger dog Charley is 18 years old and has epilepsy, pancreatitis, and has had a stroke. Our vet keeps him going on medication. He is happy now he has some doggy company again.

The puppies were breeding dogs from a puppy mill which was shut down by the AWL and are about four years old. They are so happy to have soft beds, freedom to run around and play and enough to eat. They are called Hugo and Otis - they were given those names by the shelter as they did not have names.

They love to play-wrestle together and chase each other around. It is very rewarding to adopt such needy dogs; makes me feel so good to see them playing together and enjoying all the things they have never had before.

Mostly they want lots of love and cuddles

Dorothy Wood

Thanks Dorothy!!

If you would like your pet to be the Pet of the Week, please send a picture to
Heal Your Pet At Home!

Best Wishes,

Dr Andrew Jones, DVM
P.S.  There has been MILLIONS of doses of the conventional Flea and Tick medications, and you would think it would be easy to access a database of reported side effects..

But not so


Pretty darn easy to find out about the reported side effects of that dastardly ginger or even acupressure

P.P.S. If you are looking for holistic options, then I suggest my book is a great place to start ( and it has nearly 100 reviews!!)


DISCLAIMER: This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. Dr Andrew Jones resigned from the College of Veterinarians of B.C. effective December 1 2010, meaning he cannot answer specific questions about your pet's medical issues or make specific medical recommendations for your pet.

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