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The Best Way To Remove A Tick From A Dog

Updated on March 9, 2011

Ticks

Ticks are horrible blood sucking creatures that can carry and transfer diseases from your pets to you!

There are many myths about how to remove a tick from a dog, some of which work, but if the process is done wrong the tick will not die and may return or the head can be left in the dog and become infected or move into the blood stream.

So, here's some sure fire ways to get the tick out of your dog...

Ticks

Normal size of a tick. Notice how big the tick below is after being attached to a dog for several months.
Normal size of a tick. Notice how big the tick below is after being attached to a dog for several months.
This is an extremely bad case of a tick burrowed in a dog. This is the result of a tick sucking on a dog's blood for months.
This is an extremely bad case of a tick burrowed in a dog. This is the result of a tick sucking on a dog's blood for months.

Vaseline

Good Ole' Vaseline

Ticks breathe through their butts, so if you rub vaseline onto the tick and leave it for a half hour or so it will suffocate and die. Make sure to put a nice little bit of vaseline over the tick. Once the tick has died you can remove it by simply pulling it out with tweezers. Make sure you get the entire tick including the head!

Rubbing Alcohol

Get a bottle of rubbing alcohol and pour some into the bottle cap. Now place the bottle cap over the tick(up-side-down) so that the tick drowns in the alcohol. Next, like the vaseline, pull the tick out with tweezers gently making sure that the head comes out with the body.

The tick should pull out easily, if you are having difficulty removing the tick then you may need to submerse it in the alcohol for a little longer.

Tweezers + Fire

Here is a classic one that I have done many times myself.

Take some tweezers, that you don't mind burning, and a lighter. Light the lighter and place the end of the tweezers into the flame for about 20 to 30 seconds or until hot. 

Now, being careful not to burn you or your dog, grab the tick as close to the head as you can. Let the hot tweezers burn the tick for a few seconds and then try to pull it out. Once again, if the tick does not pull out easily then you may need to re-heat the tweezers to get them hotter or burn the tick longer.

To Kill A Tick

Now that you have used one of the above methods to remove the tick you need to make sure that it is dead. You don't want you or your dog to pick it back up in the yard or off the floor.

One way that I have gotten rid of ticks before is to flush them down the toilet. There's no way a tick can come back up the toilet!

Another, possibly more effective way is to burn the tick to death. Either hold the tick with tweezers or place on a fireproof counter and, using a lighter, burn the tick for about 20 seconds. You will know when it's dead. Then dispose of it in the toilet or trash.

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    • Ding.A.Ling123 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ding.A.Ling123 

      4 years ago

      Typically if the head comes off it will simply fall out after maybe a few hours or a day. I would keep an eye on it and make sure that it does fall out and that the area does not become infected. The issue is simply that if the head is stuck there is an "open" are that could become infected.

    • Ding.A.Ling123 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ding.A.Ling123 

      4 years ago

      Heather: I'm afraid you are partially correct, if you properly heat the tweezers and grab the tick with HOT tweezers it will cause them to let go and you can pull it off. However, I have heard (not tested) that alcohol will also cause them to release their bite.

      Jennifer: Typically if the head comes off it will simply fall out after maybe a few hours or a day. I would keep an eye on it and make sure that it does fall out and that the area does not become infected. The issue is simply that if the head is stuck there is an "open" are that could become infected.

    • profile image

      jennifer 

      6 years ago

      If the head of the tick does get stuck in ur dog... then what do u suggest we do to remove it?

    • profile image

      heather 

      8 years ago

      This is wrong... you should never try to remove a tick using a match or hot tweezers--the heat will make them burrow farther into the dog, actually making it HARDER and more dangerous to remove. Simply pulling straight out with tweezers works best, and then drowning it in alcohol or water.

    • profile image

      vicki  

      9 years ago

      i thought it was really usefull the information that was on this page.thanxs my dog is now tick free.

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