Tick Paralysis In Dogs

Certain species of ticks (deer tick, American dog tick, Lone Star tick, and Rocky Mountain wood tick, to name a few) cause a serious condition primarily in dogs known as ‘tick paralysis’. However, there have been cases diagnosed in people, particularly children. When infected, a female tick produces a neurotoxin in her salivary glands. While feeding on a dog or person, the tick injects the neurotoxin into the bloodstream of the dog. Early signs include weak or unsteady rear limbs that quickly progresses to paralysis. Signs of paralysis generally starts at the lower part of the of the body and spreads to the upper extremities. The symptoms are generally manifested within 2-7 days after being exposed to an infected tick. Death can occur when the diaphragm becomes paralyzed leading to respiratory arrest. The incidence of tick paralysis tend to increase between the months of April and June just as ticks emerge from hibernation. 

Consult with your Chattanooga, TN animal hospital if you have any concerns about your pet’s behavior. More information here:


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