When attempting to remove a tick avoid handling the parasite directly. Wear gloves and dispose of ticks hygienically so they cannot re-attach themselves or lay eggs.
If you find a tick on your pet’s skin:
- The aim is to remove the whole tick, including its mouthparts without squeezing the tick's body
- You should use a special tool called a tick hook - these have a hook or scoop with a narrow slot that traps the tick's mouthparts
- Slide the hook under the tick at skin level so as to grip the head of the tick, ensure that the hook is not entangled
- Scoop out the tick – rotating the hook around the tick's head may help dislodge the mouthparts before removal
- Flush the tick down the lavatory (or sink - with hot water)
Do not attempt to burn, cut or pull the tick off with your fingers.
Do not try to remove it with tweezers as it’s easy to leave the tick’s head behind.
Do not try any of the old wives tales (burning, Vaseline, whisky) that you may hear of.
It’s really important that the tick is removed correctly; if you disturb the feeding, it is possible that the tick will inject its gut contents in to your pet, further increasing the risk of disease transmission.
If in doubt, take your pet to the vet.