If your dog loves the outdoors and heads into the brush, trees, and tall grass it is just a matter of time before you have to deal with a tick. It is important to know proper techniques for removing ticks from dogs to avoid possible infections for both yourself and your pet.
The old methods of removing ticks included using a hot cigarette, smoldering match, or another heated item to burn the tick. The reasoning behind this technique was the tick would release their grip in the attempt to escape the heat. While this method seemed to work for most people it has one very severe consequence. Quite often the animal, or the dog owner, would end up getting burned. This method is no longer recommended due to the safe limitations.
The other method commonly used in the past was to cover the tick with gasoline or another petroleum-based product to attempt to stop their oxygen supply. The theory being the tick would need to release their bite and seek oxygen. This method was not highly effective and usually ended up with the person removing the tick moving on to the next method.
The method recommended and practiced today is gentle but firm extraction. When you discover a tick on yourself or your dog, you need to grab your tweezers from the medicine cabinet. Removing ticks from dogs using tweezer requires a steady hand, and you may want a second set of friendly hands to help control your dog. You need to work the end of the tweezers underneath the head of the tick and gently pull the tick out. Do not jerk the tick, or try to pull it out quickly. The extraction may take a minute or more before the tick releases their grip.
After removing the tick make sure to clean the bite location with a good antiseptic cleaner, and maybe put a small bit of antibiotic cream on the bite spot. This will help to reduce the chance of an infection. Crush the tick with the tweezers and dispose of them well away from any possible contact with children or pets. This is just to make sure the tick did not survive and ends up back on your pet, or even worse, your children.
If you happen to be bitten when removing ticks from dogs, make sure to monitor your health over the next few days. If you start getting any flu-like symptoms or a rash contact your Doctor immediately. There is a small chance you could contract Lyme Disease, which is a very aggressive and serious condition. If you follow the proper procedure of using tweezers it is highly unlikely the tick will have an opportunity to bite. Put away the matches, cigarettes, and gasoline. The only thing you really need for successful tick removal is a pair of tweezers and a good steady pair of hands.