Tick season is here. As temperatures warm up above freezing, ticks begin to be active or to hatch. The first thing they need is a blood meal. Any warm-blooded animal will do and this is where you or your family pet may fall victim to a tick bite. Michigan, along with most of the United States, is home to the black-legged tick, commonly known here as a deer tick. This species of tick can carry the bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi, which causes Lyme disease.
Ticks are members of the spider family. Their life cycle starts as an egg, then a larva, a nymph, and finally an adult tick. Young ticks need a blood meal in order to mature to the next stage in their lifecycle. Adult female ticks also require a blood meal in order to lay their eggs. Ticks can live for 2-3 years and do not die off in the winter. Every time the outdoor temperature is above freezing, ticks become active and are potentially placing your pet at risk.
Lyme disease can affect dogs, horses, and humans. Cats can be infected, but are much more resistant to Lyme disease and often do not develop clinical signs. Lyme disease is present in many areas of the United States. In Michigan, we see four times the number of dogs that test positive for Lyme disease than for heartworm disease. Lyme disease can cause joint damage, lameness, fatigue, and swollen lymph nodes with or without swollen joints. Sometimes a serious, often fatal kidney disease occurs due to Lyme disease. Damage to the heart and nerves can occur as well. Some dogs will have no clinical signs or symptoms of Lyme disease, but are still infected. Treatment involves a long course of antibiotics.
Prevention is the best solution to protecting your pet against Lyme disease. We recommend year-round flea and tick prevention to prevent ticks from being able to infect your pet. In addition, your veterinarian can test your pet annually to rule out the possibility of infection or to alert you to the need for treatment. Dogs can also be vaccinated against Lyme disease. Check your pets and yourself for ticks- look around the eyes, ears, tail, groin, armpits, toes, and under their collar. It takes at least 24 hours of the tick being attached and feeding to transmit the infection. The sooner you find and remove a tick, the less likely your pet is to be infected. Ask your veterinarian to learn more about this potentially serious disease and what options are best for your pet.
Prevention is key to supporting your pet’s ongoing health. We devise an individualized strategy to keep your pet healthy and happy.
We perform standard and specialized surgeries to address your pet’s health concerns, including spays, tumor removal, orthopedic surgeries, and more.
Vaccinations are an important part of preventing communicative diseases. Keep your pet up-to-date on their vaccinations right at our office.
Dental health is essential to your pet’s overall wellness. Our dental services cover all of your pet’s oral health needs, from tooth extraction to cleaning.
Year-round heartworm prevention is key to keeping your pet healthy. We provide FDA-approved treatments to prevent infection.
Fleas and ticks aren’t just a nuisance: they pose a serious threat to your pet’s health. Protect your pet with preventative medicine.
Pocket pets have unique health needs. Our team addresses your pet’s health issues and develops a strategy, so they feel like their energetic self.
We provide comprehensive reproductive care for pets, including artificial insemination, neonatal care, fertility exams, and more.
Rely on us when your pet needs urgent care. We know emergencies are stressful, so we treat urgent health concerns with the utmost care.
Managing your pet’s medical needs is easy when you use our online pharmacy. Renew your pet’s prescription and purchase FDA-approved medication right from the comfort of your home. If you have any questions, contact us to speak with a trusted veterinarian.
I was impressed with the staff and Dr. Heather! You can tell that they truly care for your pets health and wellness!
I had to get my Sugar Glider Sebastian in to be seen, he was not acting right. Dr. Van Den Heuvel reassured me that he is healthy and well taken care of. Even though I do not have an exact answer to what had happened I was able…
Dr. Will is a great doctor he is currently treating my dog Jadie with her arthritis and trachea issues and also a friendly staff!
Highly recommend any rabbit owners to go here! The staff and doctors are very kind and knowledgeable about bunnies.
The entire staff is fabulous! This husband and wife team make a fantastic duo, you can tell all the staff love what they do! I drive over an hour each way to work with them and it’s worth every mile, thank you all so much! If you are…
Dr. Will was great! Very friendly and answered all our questions...Highly recommend.
Great veterinary service by wonderful people.
Switched to Blue Lake recently. I called on Tuesday to try and get our dog seen soon due to excessive itching, they were able to have him seen the next day! Highly impressed by Dr. Will. Thorough explanation of treatment and answered all my questions without feeling rushed.…
Thank you for making Truffles’ first vet visit such a positive experience. Everyone in the office is friendly and Dr. Heather is great. Truffles would like you to know that he makes no apologies for holding Dr. Heather hostage for extra cuddles after his exam.
Our Olive broke her leg in a freak accident playing with Mama Luci. Her care started out at the emergency hospital, but we asked Dr. Will and the staff at Blue Lake Animal to take over her continued care. We have been thrilled with the care and the…