When we were still in Florida the dog we had seemed to be a tick magnet. Did not matter what we did he still ended up with ticks. When we would find them on him we would spend a few hours going over him taking them off. We would have the alcohol (moonshine), a cotton ball, tweesers, with an empty pill bottle ready for those times. We would dip the cotton ball in the shine, basically get the tick drunk and then it pull off very easy with the tweezers and in it would go into the empty pill bottle. Sometimes we would fill the bottle up. The vet suggested using alcohol as a way to make the tick release easier.
We ended up taking him back to the shelter, just could not take him at that point in time with us. We went from FL to MI and we were going to be living with my husbands mom and dad for awhile and did not have the room. The shelter did end up making him the office dog and he was taken off the adoption rolls. They would have allowed us to adopt him back but we figured it was better for him to be there, he was really overweight when we first got him and worked with the vet to get him down. We got him walking (and running) and "turned" lots of fat into muscle. Come to find out he had a thyroid problem and the shelter could better work with the vet for much lower prices for meds and to change when neccessary. We miss him but know that they were taking good care of him and thats the good thing.
Thanks for the replies. Our dogs are on tick prevention. It was only one tick. We checked both dogs. We will watch carefully and take to a vet at the first sign of an issue. He is eating and acting normal and doesn't seem bothered by the spot where the tick was attached. We will continue to monitor.
Like (Scottie)Mom, I use a Tick Key--it lives on my keychain. It can be tricky with a deer/nymph tick on the poodle (curly hair, small tick), but it does work. Works fabulously on those of us who are relatively hairless. And I can whip a tick off my 4yo before he knows he has one, which is important when one's child is relatively excitable.
I only find dead ticks stuck in my dog's hair. We do use Top Spot year-round--I lost my last spoo to what was most likely Lyme nephritis.
My dogs are working dogs as well as pets. It is more common than not for each of them to have 50+ ticks on them after a session afield. The cover they hunt is loaded with ticks.
We also live way back in the sticks up on a mountain and there are zillions of ticks in our woods, so just a daily run gathers many, many ticks. The only time ticks aren't a problem is when the temps are below freezing, and even then if the temp gets above freezing for an hour, the ticks are out again.
FWIW, here's what I do:
I've never found anything that keeps the ticks off the dogs - when they push through cover, they collect ticks no matter what. So, I don't even try to deal with that.
I use Frontline Plus religiously every 30 days (it is more effective early on during that period and gradually becomes less effective), which is supposed to kill any imbedded ticks within 24 hours of biting. Supposedly, it takes longer than 24 hours to transfer Lyme virus to the dog.
As soon as the dogs are done with a hunt or a run, I carefully pick the live ticks off each dog by hand an drop them into a wide-mouth jar with rubbing alcohol which kills the &^%# things. At this point, none of the ticks are really imbedded and they are easy to pick off. It takes a good bit of time and three or four session with each dog to very carefully ruffle through all of their fur and try to get all of the ticks.
Inevitably, I will miss one or two ticks that will become imbedded. When that happens, I will simply pinch the swollen tick as close to the dog's skin as possible and pull it off. 99% of the time, the tick comes out, head and all.
Other than washing my hands at the end of the process, that's all I do. The combination of careful tick picking and Frontline must work because after exposure to thousands and thousand of ticks over the years, I've never had a dog get sick, get Lyme disease, etc. Plus, the dogs really enjoy this process and the attention - they each try to be first to be "checked".
2008 Winnebago Journey 39z DP
2004 Jeep Liberty toad
Greetings and for what it's worth...several years ago we ran into a tick problem in Jasper...we learned from the people who rent horses to heat up the end of a small screwdriver with a lighter and apply the blade to the backside of the tick and it will back itself out..head and all. This works for us...you don't have to worry about pulling it out or rubbing anything on it. Drive safe and have fun. Bob.