Lisa's sister was just in town visiting, while here she got a message from her husband back in NY letting her know their dog had a tick. Her husband had removed it and AJ, their very cute Shepherd mix, was fine. His call did put me on the alert, tick season appears to have started and knowing how to properly remove them is important.
Coincidentally, I just got this email on an alternative tick removal method for anyone who has had trouble using tweezers. I've never tried it this way but I figured I'd pass it on.
Spring will be here soon and the ticks will soon be showing their heads. Here is a good way to get them off you, your children, or your pets. Give it a try.
I had a pediatrician tell me what she believes is the best way to remove a tick. This is great, because it works in those places where it's some times difficult to get to with tweezers: between toes, in the middle of a head full of dark hair, etc.
Apply a glob of liquid soap to a cotton ball. Cover the tick with the soap-soaked cotton ball and swab it for a few seconds (15-20), the tick will come out on its own and be stuck to the cotton ball when you lift it away. This technique has worked every time I've used it (and
that was frequently), and it's much less traumatic for the patient and easier for me.
Unless someone is allergic to soap, I can't see that this would be damaging in any way. I even had my doctor's wife call me for advice because she had one stuck to her back and she couldn't reach it with tweezers. She used this method and immediately called me back to say, "It worked!"
Please forward to anyone with children... or hunters or dogs, or anyone who even steps outside in summer!!
If you prefer the tweezer method you can check out How To Remove A Tick by Dr. Foster and Smith. Remember to put the tick in alcohol to kill it, flushing it down the toilet doesn't do the trick.