Tick poisoning is a life-threatening condition caused by the saliva of the Australian Ixodes holocyclus tick. The tick’s saliva is neurotoxic, causing a slow worsening weakness and paralysis of all muscles, including the heart and gut over a few days.
Even after removing a tick, your pet is likely to deteriorate further. The sooner your pet is treated with antiserum the better the chances of recovery. The sooner they receive treatment means a shortened recovery period, which also means less intervention and costs.
Treatment is very likely to be successful in the early stages, but every year we see pets dying from ticks and the main factor is when their owners delay getting them treated. Once your pet is showing weakness in their back legs, heavy laboured breathing, retching (or vomiting) or a change in their vocalising, they need treatment urgently.
Remove the tick (however you can!) as soon as you find it, keep them as quiet as possible and DO NOT FEED THEM ANY FOOD OR WATER. Call us on 02 6585 1626 to make an appointment. Keep searching for more ticks, as there is often more than one on your pet!