Have you checked your pets for ticks yet?

Hampden County

With the warmer temperatures comes ticks, and already western Massachusetts is dealing with an influx of the pests.

One 22News viewer sent us a photo of 17 ticks he pulled off his dog.

Nicole Puza, internal medicine specialist at Boston Road Animal Hospital in Springfield told one of the best ways to prevent Lyme disease in pets is with the Lyme vaccine.

“The Lyme vaccine is also important not only for your pet but it actually kills the Lyme disease within the tick,” Dr. Puza said. “So it also is important for environmental control.”

There’s also topical treatments and collars you can get, in addition to having your lawn treated to prevent ticks.

One dog owner told 22News he’s made it a nightly routine to check his dogs for ticks after one of them became sick from a tick bite.

“I’m very adamant in getting Frontline, it’s very expensive but its worth it,” said Jay McLellan of Holyoke. “Even a couple weeks lapse can make a big difference. The dog experienced tick paralysis. Some ticks carry a venom that basically knocks the dog out for a few days. Luckily he didn’t get Lyme, but it was a very scary experience.”

Another thing Dr. Puza told 22News you can do to protect yourself and your pets is to put a mulch bed that separates any wood-lines you may have from your lawn.

If you or your pet come in contact with a tick, you should call your doctor or vet immediately.

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