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Paralysis ticks can be devastating for pets and their owners. As the season is now well underway, it is a good time to familiarise yourself with what paralysis ticks look like.

Paralysis ticks have an orange head and their body is light grey to bluish in colour when they are fully engorged (the head is very much smaller than the body, you really only see the body of an engorged tick attached to a pet). They have eight legs at the front of their body — the two front and back legs are significantly darker in colour than the two middle pairs.

Paralysis ticks are found in bushy coastal areas along the eastern seaboard of Australia from north Queensland to Eastern Victoria. They are deadly to pets, so If you live in these areas or are travelling there, it is essential that you use tick prevention.

I travel a lot with Riley into tick areas and I’m currently using Seresto flea and tick collars. What I like most about these is that they protect Riley from ticks for 4 months and fleas for 8 months, so I don’t have to worry about remembering to give him monthly tablets. Also, unlike chews or tablets, they don’t require ticks or fleas to bite in order to work -— which saves Riley the pain and discomfort!

If you find a tick, use tweezers or a tick remover to detach it. Your pet may still develop signs of tick paralysis after the tick is removed – if they are showing any signs such as wobbliness, lack of coordination, difficulty breathing or vomiting, take them straight to a vet

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