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Summertime in Gauteng

Tick alert! The good rain that fell this past week means ticks and fleas will be jumping and crawling. It's best not to wait until your pet is infested before you treat.

Ticks are found under the chest and in the hollows on the front of the dog at shoulder level. It is hard for the dog to reach in there and pull them off.

Fleas are often first found on top of the head between the ears. Flea dirt presents as little black grains. If you find that, you have a definite infection.

THERE ARE MANY GOOD PREVENTIVES AND LONG TERM TREATMENTS. They are cheaper to use than it would be to treat an infection! Go for it.

With the dry, dusty air of winter and early spring, dust bugs get to wake up and give everybody a hard time. Dogs snuggling into blankets and bedding for night after night help with the hatching of a new generation of mites. Now's the time to make sure your dog's ears are not inflamed inside or black and rough from mite infections. If the dog is often scratching at his ears then there probably is a problem. If the dog's ears are too sore to scratch, he will scratch just behind his ears and there will be hairless, sore places there. To fix this problem buy eardrops from your vet, or take the dog for a consult, or dilute F10 shampoo with tepid water and pour an egg cup full into the ear. Massage the ear gently for 30 seconds, and run away before he shakes it all on you! The ear must be washed out daily for the first 5 days, then 3 times a week for 2 weeks, then 1 time a week for months and months, until you are convinced the mites have left the property. It helps if you wash the kennel with something that kills bugs but not dogs, and burn all the bedding that's infected. Sterilise the bed thoroughly and regularly. Mites are endemic, and will try to return.

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