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ImageDanger Will Robinson. Ticks may reach record numbers. Ticking off the ticks with Preventic collar is a viable tool to deal with them buggers. But read this warning. Also, know that cats are dying from a tick bourne illness.

Preventic collar (manufactured by Virbac) is a tick preventative for dogs (providing 97 per cent effectiveness for up to three months is their claim), and I have no doubt that it’s a good product. However, I do have a concern: 

It is my personal opinion – veterinarians generally don’t realize or simply don’t think about this…and while there’s a warning of the drug interaction on the label, it is my view that it should be more visible:  

Preventic should absolutely NOT be used in conjunction with certain anti-anxiety medications, such an MAO inhibitors, tricyclic antidepressents or SSRI re-uptake inhibitors. If your dog is on physcho-pharmaceutical drug, consult with your veterinarian before using Preventic.  

Also, a reminder that Preventic and K-9 Advantix (which deters fleas and ticks) are for DOGS. Do not use these products on cats.  

Speaking of cats, Google this: Cytauxzoonosis.  

It’s another reason to keep your cats indoors!  

Or I can save you the trouble. Cytauxzoonosis is a protozoa disease transmitted by ticks. Bobcats, apparently the natural host, are typically asymptomatic. However, domestic cats usually die.

Making this worse, there is no one medical test for Cytauxzoonosis. The symptoms are nonspecific and may easily be misdiagnosed for a variety of other maladies. Symptoms include lethargy and anorexia. As the disease progresses, mild to severe, additional problems may include shortness of breath; X-Rays may indicate bronchointerstitial pulmonary disease. A fever may be present that ranges in severity from 103-107ºF. Ultimately, cats often lapse into a coma and die. There is really no treatment for Cytauxzoonosis.

So, if you live in the South, the Carolina’s or the Mid-Central region of the country, consider saving your cat’s life by keeping him or her indoors. If the threat of being hit by a car, lapping up toxic anti-freeze, feline disease, or losing a battle with a stray dog, coyote, or other wildlife doesn’t deter you from restricting your cat to indoor safety – perhaps this deadly disease will.

If you’re still determined to allow your cat outdoors, at least protect from ticks with Frontline Plus. If you manage a feral cat colony, also consider using Frontline Plus. Speak with local vets to determine if Cytauxzoonosis is in the area.

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Steve Dale is a certified animal behavior specialist who has been a trusted voice in the world of pet health for over 20 years. You have likely heard him on the radio, read him in print and online, and seen him speaking at events all over the world. His contributions to advancing pet wellness have earned him many an award and recognition around the globe.

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