Brown dog ticks and bush ticks
Brown dog ticks and bush ticks do not cause tick paralysis, but they can cause skin irritation and also transmit other important diseases e.g. Babesia parasites which invade the red blood cells of dogs causing anaemia (which can be fatal) and Erlichiosis.
Ehrlichiosis in dogs (Ehrlichia canis)
Ehrlichia is a worldwide disease. Orinigially it was not found in Australia however it was discovered in the Kimberley region of WA in 2020 and has also been found in the NT. Unfortunately it has been found in the feral/wild dog population and therefore we don’t really know it’s prevelance.
Ehrlichia is a type of bacteria which is transmitted from animal to animal via ticks (specifically the Brown Dog Tick). Dogs cannot give the bacteria directly to another dog, it must be transferred via ticks. Foxes, cats and humans can also get Erhlichia from ticks and we assume Dingos. After a tick has bitten the animal the bacteria can be transferred in 1-2 hours.
The bacteria causes a disease that we call Ehrlichiosis. It affects the blood cells and can be fatal for dogs. Initially dogs will show signs of fever, lethargy, inappetence, weight loss, enlarged lymph nodes, nose bleeding, inflamed eyes, bruising, lameness and pain. Signs appear 1-3 weeks after the tick bite.
We can protect against Erlichia with tick preventatives.
If travelling to a high risk area we recommend using two concurrent products for optimum protection:
1) A tick repellent product (either a Seresto collar or an Advantix spot-on): these products when applied the correct way should prevent ticks from biting. Ensure you read all instructions carefully.
2) A quick kill product (needs to be a product containing an isoxazeline medication, either Nexgard, Simparica or Bravecto): these products are a backup just in case the repellent fails (can happen especially in dogs with skin disease/poor skin barrier) and kill the ticks in 3-4 hours after biting.