Lyme Disease Vaccination Guide


What is Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease is a tick-borne bacterial disease which affects both humans and animals. Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacteria, is transmitted by the Ixodes species of tick which acquire the bacteria when they feed on infected animals. The tick then transmits this bacteria to other animals or people when they attach and feed again.

The Life of the Deer Tick

Blacklegged ticks (deer ticks) typically become infected with the Lyme-causing bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi, during their larval stage when they feed on infected white-footed mice and ground-feeding birds. The infected nymph or adult tick then transmits the bacteria to people and domestic animals when it attaches and takes a blood meal.

Signs of Lyme Disease In Dogs

The signs of Lyme disease can take months to develop and are easily mistaken for signs of flu or arthritis.  The most common sign is lameness due to joint pain, but Lyme disease has also been associated with kidney problems. Only your veterinarian, using a combination of blood tests, physical examinations and patient history, can make the proper diagnosis.

Risk Areas

Deer ticks are found in grassy areas (including lawns), brush, shrubs and woodlands – particularly along trails. They prefer moist, humid areas.

Your Dog May Be At Risk From Lyme Disease

You can help your veterinarian assess that risk by answering the following questions.

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