Ranch dog

Dogs often tag along, working on a ranch, but time outdoors means they may be exposes to ticks and the disease they carry.

Nearly 200,000 positive cases confirmed this year

Whether herding cattle, accompanying during barn chores or enjoying a walk outside, a trusty stock dog is always close at hand. The more dogs are outdoors, the higher risk they have for tick bites and disease.

Nearly 200,000 cases of Lyme disease have been confirmed in the U.S. so far this year, and summer temperatures continue to climb, making for thriving tick environments. However, it isn’t too late to offer dogs protection against this disease commonly transferred by ticks, according to a press release from Kansas-based Valley Vet Supply.

Lyme disease is the most commonly reported vector-borne illness in the U.S., according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

How is Lyme disease transmitted?

Within only 36 hours, an attached tick carrying the Lyme disease bacterium can transmit the disease to its host.

Can dogs transfer Lyme disease to people?

While the disease is zoonotic, meaning the illness affects both animals and humans, you can rest easy knowing Fido cannot give you Lyme disease, and vice versa. Lyme disease is transferable only from an infected tick bite.

How common is Lyme disease?

The number of canine Lyme disease cases is increasing, with 359,461 cases confirmed in 2019, according to the Companion Animal Parasite Council.

What are common symptoms?

Lyme disease can go undetected for as many as five months before signs become recognizable. Common symptoms your pet could present include swollen joints, decreased activity, loss of appetite, fever and kidney failure. Lyme disease can be fatal.

Where is the disease most prevalent?

Reported in humans and animals across the country (and across the world), Lyme disease is most prevalent in the southern New England states, eastern Mid-Atlantic states, the upper Midwest – most notably Wisconsin and Minnesota – and northern California.

What are the best prevention methods?

Trusted tick prevention products can help ensure your pet’s protection against ticks and tick-borne diseases. Proven brands of tick collars can detach up to 100% of attached ticks on your dog within just 48 hours, and some even offer eight months of protection, repelling and killing both ticks and fleas. There also are effective topical treatments to protect dogs against ticks, mosquitoes, biting flies and more.

If your dog spends extended periods of time outside playing, hunting or herding livestock, your veterinarian might recommend your pet be vaccinated against Lyme disease. Whenever possible, avoid areas where ticks are most prominent, such as the forest and grassy areas. Remember to check both yourself and your dog for ticks, to prevent both of you from the risk of harmful disease transmission.