Lyme disease is a bacterial infection usually transmitted by black-legged ticks (see previous article on ticks). To transmit the disease, ticks must be carriers of the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. Ticks can attach to animals as much as to humans and therefore infect all those in contact with them.
Symptoms of Lyme disease in dogs can occur a few months after the tick bite. Which is most frequently observed is lameness caused by joint pain. Although the disease often causes clinical signs resembling cases of arthritis or flu, however, it is associated with kidney problems, where the importance of prevention and treatment if the animal is infected with the bacterium. If in doubt, consult your veterinarian, who after an examination and blood tests, can officially diagnose Lyme disease in your pet.
When you find a tick on your pet, it is recommended to have it analyzed to determine whether or not it was a carrier of diseases that can infect your pet, including Lyme disease. The latter is the disease most frequently transmitted to dogs and humans by ticks.
At Veterinary Hospital Ste-Rose, we take care to send ticks to a government laboratory for you. You only need to pay shipping since the analysis itself is free.
We can also test your animal a month after the tick bite, with a blood test, revealing whether the animal is a carrier or not one of the diseases transmitted by ticks. This blood is the same as that for detecting heart worm.
It should be noted that these diseases are not transmitted to humans by the dog. For a disease to trasnmitted, the tick must have fed blood on the host.
Here is a link to see the symptoms of the disease in humans:
Catherine Lapierre, certified veterinary technician
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