This is unpleasant: a tabby rescue kitten who acquired a blanket of gorged ticks all over his head. It is horrendous to look at. I hope you find it acceptable to view. There is a video but I am not allowed to present it here. The video screenshots do it justice. The vet nurse or vet (we are not told) patiently removes all of them using tweezers. She plucks them off one by one. I am sure the kitten was mightily relieved when he was finally free of these disgusting blood sucking parasites.
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She works well but I’d like to add some pointers about removing ticks with tweezers. As you can see, she is removing them individually. The blood of ticks can be dangerous to people (possible infection) and therefore removal should be carried out carefully. The ticks should not be crushed or squeezed with fingers. The veterinarians suggest that you wear disposable rubber gloves.
They say that when the tick is not attached to the skin tweezers can be used without problems. However, when their head is buried into the skin you have to be careful not to pull the body out but leave the head behind. To avoid this, you should grab the tick firmly with tweezers as close to the cat’s body as possible without pinching the skin.
A drop of alcohol or nail polish applied to the tick may help to release it. The whole head and mouthparts should be removed. If they are left in, they can cause a local infection.
The tick can be placed in a jar or plastic dish with a little alcohol. It should be sealed and disposed of in an outdoor garbage can. You should not flush ticks down the toilet because they may survive and end up infecting another animal.
Afterwards the tweezers should be thoroughly washed with hot water and alcohol.
Sometimes it can be useful to ask a veterinarian to identify the species of tick which may help to verify whether it carries a disease. If by chance the head and mouthparts do remain embedded in the skin that area may become inflamed due to an infection. The way to deal with this is to is to dab antibiotic ointment on the area. If that doesn’t resolve the matter you should see a veterinarian.
Ticks can attach themselves to any part of the cat’s skin but they are normally found around the ears and between the toes. In this instance they are all over his forehead between the ears. They also on the side of the face. This is a severe infection and they do happen. Sometimes there may be hundreds of ticks all over a cat’s body. Some ticks are removed by a cat when they groom.
During feeding the tick delivers its saliva into the cat which is how disease is transmitted from ticks to cats. The best-known disease that they transmit is Lyme disease which can be very serious. Antibiotics are the treatment for early-stage Lyme disease.
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