Westside Animal Hospital, LLC

172 Gray Road
Cumberland, ME 04021



Lyme Disease

Good tick control is very important for your pet's health. Lyme disease can be found in every U.S. state and Canadian province. Our canine friends are 50% more likely to get lyme disease then humans, which is why it is vital to check your dog daily for ticks in the spring, summer and fall months. We recommend keeping your dog on tick preventatives from the start of spring to the end of fall.  Lyme disease vaccination is also recommended at your pet's annual appointment.

Diagnosing can be difficult because signs are often not present. We have a simple blood test which tests for three tick borne diseases and heartworm. If your dog does test positive it means they were bitten by a tick carrying the disease and the antibodies to the bacteria are in their system.  Not all dogs will develop lyme disease.  Many dogs who test positive have no symptoms at all and have only been exposed. We do recommend treating all exposed animals with a three week course of antibiotics to prevent your pet from developing lyme disease.

There are two common tickborne diseases found in Maine: Lyme and Anaplasmosis.  Both of these diseases have similar symptoms.  Some of the common symptoms to watch for include: lameness, fever, swollen joints, and anorexia.  Anaplasmosis often presents itself as "just not themselves".  You know your dog better then anyone else, which is why your role as "watchdog" for these infections is critical.

These diseases can not be transmitted directy from your pet to your family. However, if ticks are found in your area, your family can be at risk just like your dog.  To reduce the risk, inspect your dog for ticks daily during the spring, summer and fall months.



More Questions? Visit www.dogsandticks.com ; http://extension.umaine.edu/ipm/tickid/ ; www.petsandparasites.org