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  1. #1
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    Default Never hike without some sort of tick repellent on your dog...ever.

    The first time i ever brought my dog to the trails, (bear mountain, ny) was the only time i brought him without frontline plus...and was the only time i picked 3 ticks off him the next day. A year later, and he tested positive for lyme.

    The danger is very real, and 1 mistake could mean the realest consequences. Lucky for myself and my dog, lyme in dogs is unlike humans with symptoms and very treatable.

    He always ate grain free holistic diet, but since his lyme diagnosis, i switched him to EVO salmon and herring....the only food i found with chondroiton and glucosamine....which being that my dog is a big dog as it is and now has lyme, the added supplements is shown to really aid in preventing and treating arthritis which can be a side effect of lyme if not kept on top of.

    anyways, the point of this is according to my vet, a lot of people have aging dogs that have joint problems and are commonly misdiagnosed for arthritis. if your dog is a hiking dog like mine, you may assume he could be just wearing down with age and not even suspect lyme.

    I never suspected it, as he never showed symptoms and was even diagnosed as "asymptomatic"...though, he still recieved treatment for his antibody levels. treatment is nothing more than anti-biotics, as long as the kidneys test fine. after your treatment, you test again and if the levels are down....wait 6 months and test again (unless he shows symptoms)

    preventatives:

    Frontline Plus- i choose this one because of several bad side effects more common than i'd like to with k9 advantix II.

    K9 advantix II- I've read great and horrible things about it...though it is still VERY effective against ticks.

    Preventiq Collar- Another one i've read mixed reviews about, but much more good than bad.

    Lyme Disease vaccine- you think its unnecessary? nope. wish i had known when i first got his shots we would be hiking...i probably wouldn't be typing this thread right now.

    I hope this helps someone prevent what i unfortunately am going thru with my dog. Though he's not showing any signs of anything, still knowing he is positive is enough to make you worry...especially if you love your dog like me

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    Sorry to hear about your pup. Thank you for the info, didnt relize there was a vaccine for ticks, was just going to use frontline and check him often on our thru.

  3. #3

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    sorry to hear about your pup, yes if done right, the dog will be tick free. my dog had thousands of miles on the trail with no ticks. i had my dog vaccinated with the lyme shot. it did work well, its been so long, but i thought there was a drawback to the shot. if i remember well, it could cause stiffining of the joints.

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    i think your right about the side effects of the vaccine...theres also a small chance of the dog actually catching the disease from it...i suppose it's on the owner to outweigh the risks vs. how often the dog hikes.

    My dog is the reason i discovered the magic in hiking....so i owe all my newest interests to him. Had i known when i first got him the adventures we'd be getting into together, i definitely would have gotten with the lyme shot...no question about it.

  5. #5
    Registered User Wise Old Owl's Avatar
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    Read if you want - if not that's ok...

    Canine Lyme Disease:
    Prevention, Diagnosis, Vaccination, and Treatment Issues

    By Christie Keith There are few areas in which my own thinking has undergone more change in the last few years than on the subject of tick borne diseases. I lost a dog to acute renal failure probably caused by a disease known as Lyme nephritis, and diagnosis of Lyme disease has become much more useful and sophisticated in the last couple of years as well. Furthmore, recent research suggests that Lyme is a more serious disease in dogs than previously (and still frequently) believed.
    I used to say "no" to treating asymptomatic Lyme titers, and a lot of vets still do say "no." This is because early research indicated that most Lyme positive dogs never have any symptoms of the disease. I have cited this research myself (Why I Don't Use Lyme Disease Vaccines, Meryl P. Littman, VMD, ACVIM; Department of Clinical Studies School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania; Compendium on Continuing Education for the Practicing Veterinarian, November 1997). All but around 5-10 percent of dogs appeared to contract it and then fight it off and be fine. Clinical observation put this number higher, more like 15-25 percent, but still, most antibody-positive dogs did not show signs of disease. For this reason, most vets, including specialists, did not recommend "treating a titer." They reserved treatment for dogs showing clinical signs of the disease, and frankly, this seemed very sensible to me.
    More recent research is suggesting, however, that this approach may not be the best, and I now do believe in treating a titer (as long as it's from the new C6 test that can distinguish between infection and vaccination antibody, if the dog has ever been vaccinated for Lyme).
    In a 2005 study of 62 beagles who were infected with Lyme, 39 of the 62 dogs showed some symptoms of Lyme disease. 23 did not. This is substantially more than the 5 percent shown in an earlier study, also with beagles.

    On necropsy, almost all the dogs had some signs of Lyme disease in the form of synovitis (inflammation of the joint lining) - including the asymptomatic dogs.
    14 of the 62 dogs had very severe signs of Lyme infection, including inflammation of the blood vessels and nerve sheaths. Some dogs had lesions resembling those found in human Lyme disease. (Histopathological Studies of Experimental Lyme Disease in the Dog, J Comp Pathol. 2005 July, Summers BA, Straubinger AF, Jacobson RH, Chang YF, Appel MJ, Straubinger RK., Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853-6401, USA.)

    Although this is just one study, and I have some questions about how they controlled for the possibility of co-infection with other tick diseases those ticks might have been carrying, and how the asymptomatic dogs' necropsies compare to the necropsies of dogs not exposed to Lyme, I still think this tips the scales in the direction of treating exposed dogs even if they are asymptomatic.
    Diagnosing Lyme in Dogs
    There is a new test for Lyme disease in dogs, known as the Canine SNAP 3Dx or the C6 SNAP test, which tests for C6 antibodies to Lyme disease, and also tests for heartworm disease and ehrlichia canis, another tick borne disease. It is done in-office and is extremely accurate in detecting Lyme in dogs. That is because the C6 antibodies are only present due to actual infection, not as a reaction to the vaccine - very helpful for dogs who have been vaccinated or whose vaccination status is unknown.
    If you get a positive on the C6 SNAP test, a follow-up test should be done, called the Lyme Quantitative C6 Antibody Test. This has to be sent out. This will establish the baseline values you'll want to see affected by treatment, making it a useful tool for therapy and not just diagnosis.
    These tests are only available through IDEXX laboratories.
    Treating Lyme in Dogs
    Lyme, when caught early, is surprisingly easy to treat in dogs. Some cases become chronic and entrenched and may become incurable, but if you treat most canine cases appropriately and use the C6 quantitative assay test to monitor that treatment, you should be able to return your dog to normal health.
    Conventional treatment for Lyme in dogs is an aggressive course of doxycycline or amoxicillin. Most knowledgeable practicioners prefer doxycycline because it will also treat several other tick borne diseases that may exist as undiagnosed co-infections. This website is about holistic care of dogs so I won't linger too long on this approach other than to say this: When I use allopathy, I use it aggressively. There is no point in half-measures. If you decide to use antibiotics, use the highest recommended dose your dog can tolerate and give the longest suggested course your dog can tolerate. Most failure to treat Lyme is the result of too low a dose given for too short a time.
    Can Lyme be treated with alternative medicine? Yes, it can be, but it should be treated by a holistic veterinarian with experience treating it. Do not think that this serious infection can be treated at home. It requires expert care.
    After treatment, whether with antibiotics or holistic alternatives, you would expect to see a 50 percent or better decrease in antibody levels on the C6 quantitative assay to be able to feel treatment was effective (combined, of course, with a cessation of all symptoms during the treatment itself, if the dog was symptomatic.)
    Lyme Vaccination for Dogs
    OK, you say, you're convinced me. This is a serious disease. Should I vaccinate my dog for it?
    Unfortunately, there is no real nexus between the seriousness of a disease and the effectiveness or safety of a vaccine for that disease. In my opinion, the Lyme vaccine does not actually provide enough benefit to outweigh its substantial risks, despite the seriousness of canine Lyme Disease.
    The Lyme vaccine can cause an untreatable form of Lyme disease and, like all bacterial diseases, provides short term immunity. It is not recommended at any of the vet schools in the United States. The human Lyme vaccine was withdrawn from the market. For all the reasons, I think that it's best avoided. But I have one more, very compelling reason.
    There are other tick borne diseases that are much more serious than Lyme, for which we have no vaccines. So even if a very safe and effective Lyme vaccine were developed for dogs, having your dog vaccinated for Lyme isn't going to lessen the need for tick prevention. So it's hard to make the risk vs. benefit analysis for Lyme vaccination come out on the benefit side, no matter how you work the math.
    For information on Lyme and all other tick diseases in dogs, there is no better resource anywhere than the Tick-L discussion list. Get more info, including many great links, and join here.
    Dogs are excellent judges of character, this fact goes a long way toward explaining why some people don't like being around them.

    Woo

  6. #6
    Registered User Wise Old Owl's Avatar
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    OK here is my take - I am very serious when I say I find your loss a beloved pet unfortunate....

    Now all drugs have side affects - sucks but true, Caffeine has side affects, having sex has side affects.... get over it...

    Advantage does not work on ticks; the other two do. Frontline Plus says it kills ticks within 48 hours. K-9 Advantix also works within the same time frame.


    Advantage and Frontline are NOT TICK REPELLENTS! they are non-repellents. weird huh... they are all good ideas and the collar that you mentioned is best, but you miss the point....Advantix is a tick repellent.

    I put Frontline Plus on my dog every month - he walks into the front yard to take a piss and brushes a bush that a deer walked past last night... ooooh a tick climbs on or a flea.... he comes back into the house... I get these calls every week... Until the tick bites the protected cat or dog, the flea hops around on finding a blood meal. When he bites and fills up -(non-repellent) and infects your dog or cat then - the tick dies...... The pet is the reason why we don't have tick and flea infestations in your house or carpets. Because you are putting a 150 % concentrated material on a pet. The stuff is absorbed into the skin and resides in the blood stream. NOT on the skin. Advantix is different and is full featured.

    Want to stop Lyme Disease?

    Deep Woods off your dogs butt and bod and that's a true repellent. ( not the face) They should not hop on.... IF they do Frontline Plus is still the winner almost......Advantix - does not need DWO. I haven't used it - but my DWO and Frontline really works and I just re apply as needed.
    Last edited by Wise Old Owl; 11-10-2011 at 01:01. Reason: needed to fix due to new info after review
    Dogs are excellent judges of character, this fact goes a long way toward explaining why some people don't like being around them.

    Woo

  7. #7
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    W.O.O. Thanks for the reminder to make an appointment to get my dogs their semi-annual checks for tick bourne diseases and heartworm.

    I think I've posted this in a different thread recently, but has anyone else noticed how bad a tick year it's been? My dogs have been run on the same local trails (off leash, private property, get over it) four or five times a week for years and I've never seen anything like this. We are rarely out for more than an hour and without exaggerating, I'm pulling twenty to thirty ticks off of my pointer after each trip. I've gotten in the habit of sitting her down as soon as we are off the trail and spending considerable time combing through her hair to find them before they attach, but she still gets dozens of tick bites each week. Even the recent cold snap didn't seem to make a difference the number of ticks out there.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  8. #8

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    At least here in New England, I think the tick population goes down when we have nasty cold weather before the snow falls. Hasn't happened in a few years. We've had early season snows that insulate them. We have a mountain property at the ticks have been absolutely terrible on the mountain in the spring for the last couple of years. Two summers ago, I refused to go to the property regularly until August - I would get a dozen or so on me without even hiking, just working around the yurt. Ick!
    Quilteresq
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  9. #9
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    Sarcasm, I completely agree. I'm amazed at how many ticks are still out. Just this past weekend I took my dog for a walk, came back and started working on my laptop. Wthin 5 minutes I notice 2 ticks crawling on my hands. And this was after the Nor'Easter.

    Back to the topic: Can't remember where I read it, but I recall someone describing spraying his dog with a diluted form of the stuff they spray on horses. I think it contains permethrin but not sure about that. Does anyone have any knowledge/experience about that? Even with Frontline, my dog is coming in with ticks (mostly in the head and neck areas).

  10. #10

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    all the years my dog and i spent on the trail,i never found a tick attached to her. i used a flea/tick collar and frontline. she had the lyme shot,still not sure if that was good or bad? i saw where the bat population was being wiped out by some disease, i know they ate skitters, do bats eat ticks?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarcasm the elf View Post
    W.O.O. Thanks for the reminder to make an appointment to get my dogs their semi-annual checks for tick bourne diseases and heartworm.

    I think I've posted this in a different thread recently, but has anyone else noticed how bad a tick year it's been? My dogs have been run on the same local trails (off leash, private property, get over it) four or five times a week for years and I've never seen anything like this. We are rarely out for more than an hour and without exaggerating, I'm pulling twenty to thirty ticks off of my pointer after each trip. I've gotten in the habit of sitting her down as soon as we are off the trail and spending considerable time combing through her hair to find them before they attach, but she still gets dozens of tick bites each week. Even the recent cold snap didn't seem to make a difference the number of ticks out there.
    Yup, brought the dogs to the vet today for precautionary Lyme disease tests, both tested positive. Neither one of them was showing any major symptoms but given their exposure to ticks I've been getting them checked 2-3 times a year. Both are now on Doxycycline and will hopefully be fine after the course of treatment.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  12. #12
    Registered User Wise Old Owl's Avatar
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    Keep in mind the population of ticks coincides with deer and mice, from old books I remember reading that there were lots of rattlers around to keep the population down - ticks were not a problem then annual hunts were done to control the snakes and the mice did play and now the ticks have a better foot hold. Here in Pennsylvania - at the turn of the century there were less than 3000 deer from hunting. Today they almost out number people, White-tailed deer management in Pennsylvania has recently become one of the most extensive wildlife management programs in the nation. The Pennsylvania Game Commission, under the leadership of Game Commission Biologist Dr. Gary Alt, has adjusted hunting regulations in an attempt to reduce female deer populations, which the is "only way" to facilitate deer population control. Much research is underway, which will lead to additional changes in deer hunting regulations. The DNCR are making available one million doe tags available to thousands of hunters who bought 9% less licenses this year, to reduce the current population.....


    P.S. FYI up to now I have never hunted.- just the messenger.
    Dogs are excellent judges of character, this fact goes a long way toward explaining why some people don't like being around them.

    Woo

  13. #13

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    I recently went hiking on two different occasions with different hikers, and was surprised to find out that they thought that ticks somehow disappeared when the weather gets cold. They don't. They just live under leaf litter which is easy to kick up onto the back of your socks and pants with the opposing foot. I treat my clothes with permethrin until there's snow on the ground - even then the ticks aren't dead - they're still barely living under the leaf litter and are thriving on shelter mice.
    Not all deer ticks are carriers of Lyme, but I can't tell and don't feel like taking chances.

    Btw: This is another good reason to keep your dogs out of shelters. They might be seeding ticks which can be picked up by shelter users and certainly by the resident mice.
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinker View Post
    I treat my clothes with permethrin until there's snow on the ground.
    I wish I could do this but I don't allow permethrin into my home because of how highly toxic it is to cats. The amount of permethrin that is used to treat hiker clothing or is dosed out to dogs can be seriously harmful to cats and they can be exposed by simply lying down on a piece of clothing that's treated or brushing up against a dog that has permethrin applied to its coat. Extremely toxic to fish too, so it can't be too good to wear at river crossings
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

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    I keep my pups pack on him 100% of the time on the trail and coat it with Repel Max deet 40% that keeps them away. Just gotta be careful if your pup like to lick himself. This method works VERY well down here in Fl on the Suwannee river where there are TONS of ticks. Hes on Comfortis for fleas.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarcasm the elf View Post
    I wish I could do this but I don't allow permethrin into my home because of how highly toxic it is to cats. The amount of permethrin that is used to treat hiker clothing or is dosed out to dogs can be seriously harmful to cats and they can be exposed by simply lying down on a piece of clothing that's treated or brushing up against a dog that has permethrin applied to its coat. Extremely toxic to fish too, so it can't be too good to wear at river crossings
    Urban myth.

    Listen to the video from Sawyer (starting at the 4:25 mark if you wish). ONLY the liquid form is dangerous to cats and fish.
    Fear ridges that are depicted as flat lines on a profile map.

  17. #17

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    When hiking the GA portion of AT recently.. on different occasions.. my dog had terrible issues with ticks. Most days, I would pick 4 or more attached ticks off him (and that's merely the ones I *found*, which, having a black blog, I've learned I miss just as many as I find)

    Last time, I put on an amitraz collar (Preventic) on the beginning of the hike. Directions say it takes about 24 hours to work.
    First day: 3+ ticks on him
    24 hours and beyond - I didn't find one single attached tick on him the remainder of the trip. Not one!! Considering how bad of a tick problem we have here, this is amazing.

    Not even the previous combo of K9 Advantix II and Trifexis (while not marketed as such, it is also an effective short-term tick killer) came remotely close to being this damn effective. Seriously, amitraz-based products do wonders. Sure, I don't like the idea of my dog having an MAOI/alpha-agonist in his system... but I rather that than him contracting something bad. Not to mention the damn vet bills that accompany it.

    Other than that- Certifect will be the best option (has amitraz and the active ingredients of frontline), and highly recommended by my vet. I just can't afford to use both it and Trifexis (which is the only thing that works well for fleas around here) together. Also, Revolution supposedly works great too, for most types of ticks; I've never personally tried it though.

  18. #18
    Registered User Wise Old Owl's Avatar
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    Nice find Sidewards-I went to the website and looked up the product label.
    Dogs are excellent judges of character, this fact goes a long way toward explaining why some people don't like being around them.

    Woo

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    IM glad to see this thread brought so much attention to the situation at hand....here's a little update on my buddy, wilson (phish tribute)

    !. after the doxy treatment his levels went from 100 to 20 which is considered a complete success in treatment...obviously, he will likely always be infected but he responded well to the doxy treatments.
    2. he now gets a regular 6 month lyme antibodies test and if his levels are above 30, im putting him back on doxy treatments whether my doc recommends it or not.
    3. just in case the lyme affects him later in his age, he's now eating Orijen dog food which has a healthy glucosamine/chondroidotin dosage in it...so no need for gluco supplements.

    From what i read, it's up in the air as to if a dog is considered cured after a positive response to doxy...some cases it stays below levels forever after one treatment, some it "flares up" sometimes and always needs treatment...im hoping mine is the first, obviously.

    As for remedies, i have made a switch from chemicals and spot on treatments to natural treatments....though i do treat his dog pack with Sawyer permethrin, i spray on his skin a lemongrass/cinnamon oil based natural repellent and follow that with a strong neem spray....than, when were back from our hikes i immediately give him a Ecto-soothe bath....ecto soothe is a lot like Ovitrol, which is basically a flea/tick shampoo....but a strong one.

    Thus far, haven't found one tick on him....dead or alive (non in the tub)...i give him daily checks so if there was one, i'd certainly see it.

    i also made a video im thinking of uploading on youtube where i found a dog tick on my 2nd dog after bringing him to the local pond one day (he was untreated) and i sprayed the natural repellent on him that i was referring to before...cinnamon/lemon oil based...and the tick actually dies which is all the proof i needed after that point combined with my current experiences.

    The natural repellent is called pet naturals of vermont flea/tick repellent and the neem spray i found on amazon made by ark naturals.

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    I also have a dog who suffered from Lyme when he was young. Thanks for the updated information. The doxy caused his liver numbers to go off the chart though :/ Just can't win with a disease like Lyme. Even if you get the infection cleared up it can come back to attack things like the joints. Danny is now 13 and we think contracted Lyme when he was under a year old and not treated for almost 2 years because his symptoms were on and off lameness.

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