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ugh.. tick's head got stuck.

This forum is for dog lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your dog.


Super Friendly- Aviator
Barked: Tue Oct 26, '10 12:53am PST 
silenced I know there's another thread about ticks here, but I didn't want to hijack it with my own question.

Well... what do you do if the tick's head comes off? Poor Ava. It's her first tick since last year and I manage to pull it out the wrong way leaving it's head stuck inside her ear.

I searched around some other sites, and either they say "don't worry, it'll come out on it's own" or "call the emergency vet NOW!"

Well, personally I like to reserve emergency vet calls at 4:00am for life or death situations. Not tick bites. shrug

So, has anyone ever dealt with this before? How do you get a disembodied tick head out?

Will Take you- On!
Barked: Tue Oct 26, '10 5:34am PST 
Well... Technically, yes, you should go to a vet ASAP. Honestly, I've been living in one of the tick capitals of the world since I was born. I can't even begin to count the number of ticks my brother and sister and I have picked up in our lives, let alone my dogs. Sometimes, the head just comes off. I'd say 95% of the time your body kinda scabs it over and pushes it out on it's own. None of us ever had an issue, but we did watch the area until the head was gone. There is a risk of it festering and becoming infected.
Turner - Gone Too- Soon

Hi I'm Turner- Wanna Smell My- Butt?
Barked: Tue Oct 26, '10 5:52am PST 
I don't think it's an emergency. I've had tick heads get stuck and they have fallen out on their own, or I've got back later and managed to get them out. I do, however, watch the bite site for any redness, swelling or puss. If it doesn't look like it's healing alright I call the vet. I to like in a tick infested area, it's horrible - I get the heebie jeebies all the time from them! Eeeeewwww...


Super Friendly- Aviator
Barked: Tue Oct 26, '10 10:46am PST 
Well, we went to the vet at 11am this morning. smile

Our vet didn't remove the head (they tried, but couldn't get it, and didn't want to cut in to Ava's ear to get it out). They said it will come out on it's own like a splinter, and just keep an eye on it, bring her in if it becomes swollen, shows signs of infection, etc. They're not worried about Lyme Disease.

They didn't charge us either, which was cool. way to go

Edited by author Tue Oct 26, '10 10:48am PST

Leah, CGC

All the Beauty- with none of the- Brains
Barked: Tue Oct 26, '10 2:04pm PST 
If the tick was big enough to see it is rare that it would vector lyme. Also it takes as long as 4-6 months for an antibody test for lyme to come up positive after a dog is bitten.
Sarah, CWSR,- CWG1, CGC

Million Dollar- Mutt
Barked: Tue Oct 26, '10 6:14pm PST 
I had a foster that I pulled a tick out of. I don't think I left the WHOLE head, but I must have left something. I saw her off-and-on for a few weeks and she had a little scab over whatever was left behind, then a month later it was gone. It's gross to think about tick bits being in you or your dog, but she turned out okay!