Spokane ticks could cause paralysis in pets - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane ticks could cause paralysis in pets

Posted: Updated:
SPOKANE, Wash. -

A warning for pet owners. It's tick season and while they are definitely a nuisance, they can be much more dangerous for your four-legged family members. An Oregon family is glad to still have their dog after a veterinarian nearly put it down because it was paralyzed.  The vet then found a tick behind the dog's ear that was sending toxins into the animal's blood. 

It happened to 4-year-old Tucker here Spokane.  He's a Yorkie and he's up and moving around now, but just days ago it was a much different story.   

"I noticed he wasn't able to jump up the stairs and get into the house," says Kim Rose.  "Then I noticed his back legs were not working at all.  It was like he was paralyzed."  Just a few hours later he couldn't move his legs at all.  Rose took him to the pet ER.  Tucker had tick paralysis.    

"It's caused by a toxin that's secreted through the salivary glands of the ticks," says Dr. Brian Hunter.   Dr. Hunter has been practicing veterinary medicine for 37 years and has only seen about five or six cases of tick paralysis, ever.    

"It can paralyze the diaphragm, the respiratory muscles, and so there is the risk of killing the dog," says Dr. Hunter.    

On the other hand, he says the dog will start to recover pretty quickly once the tick has been removed.   

To look for ticks you can just do a back and forth, massage-like motion all over your dog, feeling for little bumps.  "An immature tick or one that is just starting to attach is going to be maybe half of my little fingernails," says Dr. Hunter.  "Female ticks engorged with blood will be much bigger." 

Rose says she checked for ticks on Tucker and even gave him a bath the week before the paralysis began, but she must have missed it.  Now she's just thankful he's still alive. 

"Dogs are our kids and that's how we treat them and it was just a really awful feeling."

Dr. Hunter recommends using an anti-tick medicine to kill ticks.  You should also regularly check your pets during the warmer months. 

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • New York State illegally moving convicted sex offenders from prisons into group homes with the developmentally disabled

    New York State illegally moving convicted sex offenders from prisons into group homes with the developmentally disabled

    Thursday, September 20 2018 9:14 AM EDT2018-09-20 13:14:31 GMT
    Three State agencies are involved in placing convicted sex offenders in group homes or hiding this information from the families and the general public>>
    Three State agencies are involved in placing convicted sex offenders in group homes or hiding this information from the families and the general public>>
  • Cold Case: The Missing Wedding Guest

    Cold Case: The Missing Wedding Guest

    Monday, September 24 2018 5:19 PM EDT2018-09-24 21:19:07 GMT

    STEVENS COUNTY, Wash. - It's been nearly two years since anyone has seen or heard from Paul Brazeau. He was last seen at his son's wedding. His brokenhearted family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner with a letter asking for his case to be featured in our Q6 Cold Case series. The day Paul vanished started out so wonderful. "It was a happy day," said Paul's aunt Georgine Glatt. 

    >>

    STEVENS COUNTY, Wash. - It's been nearly two years since anyone has seen or heard from Paul Brazeau. He was last seen at his son's wedding. His brokenhearted family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner with a letter asking for his case to be featured in our Q6 Cold Case series. The day Paul vanished started out so wonderful. "It was a happy day," said Paul's aunt Georgine Glatt. 

    >>
  • UPDATE: One man detained near Rockford Bay after SWAT situation

    UPDATE: One man detained near Rockford Bay after SWAT situation

    Monday, September 24 2018 2:28 PM EDT2018-09-24 18:28:11 GMT

    COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - The Kootenai County Sheriff's Office says one man was detained following a SWAT situation near Rockford Bay Monday morning. The incident happened near Highway 95 and Bellgrove Road. Deputies say it was a domestic dispute and the 2nd time they had been called the home in the past 24 hours. 

    >>

    COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - The Kootenai County Sheriff's Office says one man was detained following a SWAT situation near Rockford Bay Monday morning. The incident happened near Highway 95 and Bellgrove Road. Deputies say it was a domestic dispute and the 2nd time they had been called the home in the past 24 hours. 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Cold Case: The Missing Wedding Guest

    Cold Case: The Missing Wedding Guest

    Monday, September 24 2018 5:19 PM EDT2018-09-24 21:19:07 GMT

    STEVENS COUNTY, Wash. - It's been nearly two years since anyone has seen or heard from Paul Brazeau. He was last seen at his son's wedding. His brokenhearted family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner with a letter asking for his case to be featured in our Q6 Cold Case series. The day Paul vanished started out so wonderful. "It was a happy day," said Paul's aunt Georgine Glatt. 

    >>

    STEVENS COUNTY, Wash. - It's been nearly two years since anyone has seen or heard from Paul Brazeau. He was last seen at his son's wedding. His brokenhearted family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner with a letter asking for his case to be featured in our Q6 Cold Case series. The day Paul vanished started out so wonderful. "It was a happy day," said Paul's aunt Georgine Glatt. 

    >>
  • Multiple fires break out west of Spokane along I-90

    Multiple fires break out west of Spokane along I-90

    Monday, September 24 2018 4:14 PM EDT2018-09-24 20:14:44 GMT
    PHOTO: Brian CrowPHOTO: Brian Crow

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Multiple fire crews from Spokane County and the Department of Natural Resources are working to mop up a series of fires that broke out along Interstate 90 west of Spokane. Crews on scene tell us that while they don't have an exact count, there were at least 3 different fires burning, all about 5-acres in size, along I-90 between exit 272 and 277. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Multiple fire crews from Spokane County and the Department of Natural Resources are working to mop up a series of fires that broke out along Interstate 90 west of Spokane. Crews on scene tell us that while they don't have an exact count, there were at least 3 different fires burning, all about 5-acres in size, along I-90 between exit 272 and 277. 

    >>
  • UPDATE: One man detained near Rockford Bay after SWAT situation

    UPDATE: One man detained near Rockford Bay after SWAT situation

    Monday, September 24 2018 2:28 PM EDT2018-09-24 18:28:11 GMT

    COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - The Kootenai County Sheriff's Office says one man was detained following a SWAT situation near Rockford Bay Monday morning. The incident happened near Highway 95 and Bellgrove Road. Deputies say it was a domestic dispute and the 2nd time they had been called the home in the past 24 hours. 

    >>

    COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - The Kootenai County Sheriff's Office says one man was detained following a SWAT situation near Rockford Bay Monday morning. The incident happened near Highway 95 and Bellgrove Road. Deputies say it was a domestic dispute and the 2nd time they had been called the home in the past 24 hours. 

    >>