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Tick heads left in dogs ....... its okay???

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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-23-07 03:47 PM
Original message
Tick heads left in dogs ....... its okay???
Last night I found two ticks on our Border Collie. As in the past, I got out the big old tweezers and grabbed the tick low and close to the dog's skin. I pulled, steady and firmly, not sharp and not too hard. Best technique aside, and for the first time ever, I got the tick's engorged body, but not the head.

I was really upset and feeling bad for letting down She Who NEVER Let's Us Down. I called the vet (a vet I trust and who we've used for decades). She said not to worry. The tick head will not bother the dog apart from a bump that may last a month or so. I said I heard it was very bad to leave the head in there untreated. Nope, she insisted, that's a myth ... and old wife's tale (She's an old wife :) )

Anyone know more about this? I checked on the net and the 'old wife's tale' seems pretty much the common wisdom.
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IndyOp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-23-07 09:26 PM
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1. Not a problem... In my experience and according to my vet, too. (n/t)
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sazemisery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-24-07 03:48 PM
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2. I live in tick paradise in Oklahoma...
Many tick heads have been left in my pets, not intentionally of course, and have never had problems other than what you vet mentioned.
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livetohike Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-25-07 03:08 PM
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3. Not a problem - it just all scabs over and falls out
Veteran "tick-puller off of dogs" here :hi:. We just got back from a quick trip to FL and I have that very problem with my ACD. I dabbed the area with some alcohol when I knew the head was stuck in there - that was three days ago and now there is a scab.
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Eurobabe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-26-07 09:34 AM
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4. My cat had a tick in May
I had to wrap him in a towel to get it out, and the head got stuck. I questioned a vet here and they said not to worry about it, but just keep an eye on Demon to see if he was acting weird.

Well, he ALWAYS acts weird. But I don't think he has any affects from the nasty tick, which died in the toilet after I ripped its head off. :rofl:
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Samantha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-27-07 10:58 PM
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5. I am surprised
I have always heard to be careful to get the head because if it's left in, it could become infected. I would be careful to keep a close eye on this.

The next time you find a tick, try swabbing fingernail polish remover on the whole tick. That is suppose to make the tick "withdraw" from the animal and you can remove the whole tick with the tweezers. Alcohol is also supposed to work, but I have always used the fingernail polish remover. I have never failed to remove the entire tick with this trick, and I am very squeamish about these types of things. When I lived in West Virginia for eight years, though, I HAD TO LEARN TO DO IT, and this method worked for me.

Good luck.
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