Ticks are not just a problem for humans, but also for our furry friends.
It’s important to know what the signs of a tick or scab on your dog are so you can get them treated as soon as possible.
Ticks are small insects that attach themselves to your dog’s skin, usually on their stomachs or under their armpits.
They can carry diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and ehrlichiosis—all of which can be fatal if left untreated.
How to tell if your dog has a tick or scab?
You can easily tell the difference between ticks and scabs by looking at their legs.
Ticks have eight legs, while scabs have six. If you’re not sure what kind of bug you’re dealing with, take a photo and send it to your veterinarian.
There are many different types of ticks that live in every region of the world, but ticks are most common in areas where there is warm weather and tall grasses or shrubs — places where animals like to hang out.
Ticks don’t just hang out on dogs; they also like rabbits, deer, and other mammals.
These little critters don’t bite humans unless they get on us by accident or we pick them up off a pet or another animal and put them in our mouth (not recommended).
Can skin grow over a tick?
The answer is yes. Some people think that if they leave a tick on their dog’s skin for a few days, the skin will grow over it and kill it.
This is not true. A tick can live for up to three days if no one removes it from the dog’s body and the tick can cause serious illness or even death if not removed in time.
Can a tick look like a scab?
Ticks and scabs look very similar. So how do you tell them apart? It’s not an easy task.
However, there are some simple ways to figure out what kind of parasite is attached to your dog’s skin.
Ticks vs. Scabs: How to Tell Them Apart
The first step in figuring out whether or not your dog has a tick or a scab is to get a good look at the body part in question.
If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to see the whole bug without any obstruction.
If not, try using tweezers or other tools to gently pull it off and take a closer look (see below).
Once you have a good view of what’s going on, here is the tip for telling ticks from scabs:
Check for legs
Ticks have six legs compared to scabs’ two-four in their front pair and two in their rear pair.
This makes them easy to distinguish from scabs which have only two legs total — one pair at each end of their body (front and back).
So, when you can’t see the tick or scab, there’s really no way to determine if it is either.
Don’t worry, there are some tests that can be done to help you figure out what is going on.
The vet will take a skin biopsy to determine the mite vs tick vs scab.
After that, depending on the findings, they’ll help you treat your dog accordingly.