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PetHealth offers complementary and alternative therapies for pets with a strong focus on enhancing their natural well-being and health. Our clientele consists of dogs, cats, horses and other domestic animals. You will find information on our services and other topical information related to animal welfare on our website.
Saturday 5/13/17 time 3:53 PM - Heidi Edelman
Is your dog or cat a real tick magnet? Have you ever wondered why ticks are so eager to stick on your dog while your neighbor’s pooch gets left alone by them? Why some animals wandering in the same terrain get ticks and some don’t?
There’s a simple explanation you rarely hear spoken of when it comes to tick epidemic. A tick feeding on the blood of its host is a parasite. In general parasites are attracted by individuals with weak immunity, or very young individuals whose immune system has not fully developed yet, and therefore is not functioning at maximum efficiency. Absolutely the best way to prevent ticks and other parasites is to support the general health and immunity of your pet!
There are many repellents in the market, which unfortunately also possess a wide range of harmful side effects. Repellents often use permethrin, imidacloprid, deltamethrin and fipronil as active ingredients, all of which are highly toxic carcinogens, nerve toxins, teratogens (substance causing fetus malformation) and dermatogens. Known side effects include brain, lung and kidney damage, pulmonary edema, bone marrow sickness, cancer, skin itch, coordination problems, tremor, breathing difficulties, epileptic seizures and fetus damage. Would you let these substances to come in contact with your or your kids’ skin? You most likely would not, so why would you expose your pet to them?
Even though the concentration of active ingredients in repellents is calculated as ”safe” to use for mammals, and not every individual experiences imminent, externally visibly side effects, would you call these substances safe? Every time your pet’s body comes in contact with an unknown substance or chemical, it reacts to it in some way. Usually the reaction is not externally visible, even though imminent side effects and even death has been frequently reported. The fact that the reaction is not visible does not mean that it’s not happening, nor that these substances would be safe to use. At some extent, they still absorb through the skin into the blood circulation and central nervous system of your per, where they most certainly are not welcomed visitors.
Let’s take a moment to think how dangerous these substances are, if the label on the product advises to wear protective gloves when administering them, to avoid contact with your skin and the skin of your children, furniture and bedding, and if the administration frequency is once a month or even once every summer.
Not even all natural repellents are safe to use. They may also have harmful side effects. Natural repellents include D-limonene, geraniol, terpene and linalool as active ingredients, which may cause allergic reactions, skin itch and inflammation, nervous damage, nausea as well as liver and kidney damage as harmful side effects. Natural repellents very often include significant amounts of essential oils such as geranium, tea tree, citronella, lavender and eucalyptus, of which some are even poisonous to animals. Although some essential oils (lavender for example) are, in moderation, safe to use externally to treat your pet, a certain degree of caution has to be followed when using them. Natural tick collars often have a very strong odor caused by essential oils, which itself causes the animal to feel uncomfortable.
How is it safely possible to prevent ticks then?