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Ticks are creatures that are about the size of a sesame seed. They live in the long grass but need to get onto animals to feed and breed. They can attach themselves to human skin, dog skin, and many other animals. They can cause localized irritation but more seriously, they can transmit infections from one animal to another, including Lyme Disease. This very serious disease has nasty health implications for both dogs and humans.
You can control the risk by taking sensible measures and using a tick repellent for dogs. It is available as a powder, a spray, a shampoo, or a collar. Tick repellant has active ingredients that deter ticks or kill them. Your vet can give you further information on tick bites’ health risks, but to get you started, check out our guide to the best tick repellent for dogs.
The active ingredients in this flea and tick shampoo are Piperonyl Butoxide and Pyriporoxyfen. These insect growth regulators will kill the larvae and eggs of fleas for up to 28 days. It also contains protein to help with grooming and thanks to the aloe, coconut and lanolin it can be used on sensitive skin.
It has a pleasant odor and comes in a bottle with an easy dispensing pump. Because it is a shampoo, you get to clean your dog at the same time as protecting them from fleas and ticks. It can be used on pups over 12 weeks old and can also be used on cats.
A natural flea and tick spray that contains several active ingredients including peppermint oil and Eugenol. There are no harsh chemicals to worry about but it is capable of killing fleas, flea larvae and flea eggs as well as ticks.
You can use it if you have an active infestation or you can use it as a preventative measure. Because it is natural, you can use it even when you have a family. You can use this product in two ways. You can use it inside and outside your home, and it can be sprayed on dog bedding and dog crates as well as all over your furniture, blankets and upholstery and carpets. You can also apply it directly to dogs and pups who are over 12 weeks old.
A powerful spray that kills fleas and ticks, this product contains active ingredients that will also kill eggs that hatch within the following month after application. It comes in a handy 16 ounce spray bottle.
Because it contains aloe, it will provide relief from itching and irritated skin. You can use it as a preventative spray and it is suitable for all dogs including pups over 12 weeks old.
If you have a very large dog, this is the product for you! It is suitable for dogs that weigh over 55 pounds and you get enough to last you six months. It will prevent flea, tick and mosquito bites and control all life stages of the flea parasite.
It starts working within 12 hours of it being applied and lasts for 30 days. It kills the parasite on contact and before it has bitten your dog. It is water resistant and can be used on dogs that are seven weeks old and weigh over four pounds.
This flea collar is also effective at repelling ticks, it has no odor and is not greasy. It kills insects as it comes into contact with them and before they bite your pet. It continuously releases a low concentration of repellant which is distributed over your pet’s skin.
It both kills and repels ticks and carries on working for eight months. This collar is suitable for dogs over 18 pounds and pups over seven weeks old. It also works on flea larvae and lice.
Flea collar for large dogs
Continuously releases a low concentration of repellant
This is a safe but effective shampoo for dogs that is both ultra-hydrating and will repel ticks and fleas without using synthetic and harsh chemicals. It contains colloidal oatmeal which nourishes your dog’s skin whilst cleaning their coat. It will help to calm down irritated and painful skin and make your dog feel more comfortable.
The active ingredients are vanilla and lavender which naturally deter ticks and fleas. They also help to heal bites and have a pleasant odor to counteract the ‘doggy’ smell. The colloidal oatmeal and aloe vera have a calming effect on sensitive and irritated skin and keeps their coat feeling soft.
This natural flea and tick spray effectively kills ticks and fleas on contact and will repel mosquitoes at the same time. You can use it on your dog or on items that they come into contact with such as bedding, carpets and upholstery.
It is made using natural plant extracts including peppermint oil and clove extract. It does not stain on contact and comes in handy spray bottle. You can use it on dogs and pups aged over 12 weeks and older, as directed. Since it’s a plant-based formula, it’s safe to use around the whole family.
This gorgeous bandana contains a proprietary permethrin formula which is bound tightly to fabric fibers. Therefore, it carries on working even after it has been washed up to 70 times. It is perfect for country walks as it looks stylish but also protects your pooch from fleas and ticks as well as mosquitoes, ants, flies and midges.
It’s made from 50 % polyester and 50 % cotton and measures 19 inches x 19 inches but it can be trimmed with scissors to suit smaller breeds. This dog bandana comes in two lovely colors and is approved as safe by the EPA.
These handy flea and tick wipes use only certified and natural essential oils which are all plant-based. The active ingredients are peppermint oil and eugenol. They have been proven to be effective at repelling ticks and fleas from a dog’s coat.
The wipes are very handy to take out with you when you are out and about – they are very soft and resistant to tearing. The fabric of the wipes is synthetic-free and contains no dyes or added fragrances. They will not stain your dog’s coat. Wipes are very good for treating hard to reach areas such as the ears and in-between the paws.
Wipes which are handy for when you are out and about
A natural tick spray repellant that contains lemongrass oil, cinnamon oil, sesame oil and castor oil. It repels ticks as well as fleas and mosquitoes and flies.
It is very pleasant to use because it is not sticky and has a refreshing odor. You can be confident that it does not contain any synthetic drugs or nasty chemicals. Therefore, it is safe to use on dogs and cats of all sizes and on bedding.
What to Consider When Buying a Tick Repellent for Dogs
There are several things that you should consider before selecting tick medicine for dogs. If you are unsure about anything, you should always have a chat with your vet. They will be able to advise you on which would be the best product for your dog. Here are the main things to look out for in the best tick repellent.
Is it suitable for dogs? Treatments for cats, dogs, and other animals can be very different. Always read the label very carefully to make sure that the product that you are buying is designed for dogs. If you are in any doubt, consult with your vet.
Method of application. Tick repellants can be applied as wipes, sprays, powders, or collars. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. It will be a matter of personal preference. You may prefer the convenience of wipes or you may prefer the completely mess-free option of a collar. You can even get tick repellent bandanas that combine style with chemicals that keep ticks at bay.
Where are you going to apply it? Some products are designed to be applied to your dog’s coat but others can be used on bedding and upholstery. Other products can be used on both and this could end up saving you money.
Active ingredients. Tick repellants contain active ingredients that can be synthetic or natural. Some owners feel that the natural ingredients, such as essential oils, do not work as effectively. However, others are quite happy with the way that they perform. Again, this is a matter of personal preference. The active ingredients will always be printed on the label.
The safety of the product is paramount. It must be safe for your dog and safe for all your family to come into contact with. Therefore, it must comply with all the relevant regulations and standards.
Length of action. Ideally, you should be looking for a product that starts working quickly. Some start working within five minutes of the application so you can pop it on before you head off for a walk. Many remain active for up to a month.
Age suitability. Not all tick repellants are suitable for pups. You must check the age limits for the product.
Ticks are tiny insects that feed off your dog’s blood and any other dog’s that they can get onto. This is why they are so troublesome. They can spread disease as they move from one animal to another.
Not only can they cause local irritation but they can spread very nasty diseases including Lyme disease. This bacterial infection affects muscle and nerve cells. It is very difficult to diagnose in dogs so tick prevention for dogs is vital.
Shampoos, Sprays, Powders… – What’s The Difference
Tick treatment for dogs can be applied in many different ways including as a powder, a shampoo, a spray, a collar, and wipes. Each has advantages and disadvantages so you will need to make a personal choice.
Shampoos are very popular because they clean at the same time as adding a tick repellant to the coat. However, sprays and powders are also widely used because they can be quickly applied without you having to bathe your dog.
Some owners prefer to use a collar that gradually releases tick repellent over time but others worry about irritation. You can even get a fabric bandana infused with tick repellent and ideal for stylish country walks!
Unfortunately, ticks are a part of owning a dog so it is important that you understand what they are, where they live, and what steps you can take to prevent them. Ticks are tiny creatures that are related to spiders and look a bit like a sesame seed when they are attached to your dog’s skin. They like to live in grassy areas but need to get onto an animal to find food because they feed on blood. The animal that they live on is called a host.
Some of the top tips for tick control for dogs are here:
Use a tick repellent product on your dog.
Treat your dog accessories with tick repellant too.
Treat areas of your garden that your dog comes into contact with using a suitable repellent. Also, clear up leaf litter, keep the grass short and cut vegetation back.
When you are out with your dog, be very vigilant and check them for ticks.
Try to walk in the center of paths and avoid over-hanging vegetation.
Groom your dog regularly and thoroughly. Brush in the direction of hair growth and against it. This will enable you to spot embedded ticks.
Check inside your dog’s ears and around their eyes. Also, have a good look around their chin area and muzzle area. It is also important to look at their pads and in between their toes.
Watch out for ticks on your own clothing as you could carry them back into your house. Get into the habit of taking off your outer clothes before you go indoors. Ticks can even survive a full cycle in a washing machine and short periods in a dryer.
Best Tick Repellent for Dogs FAQ:
Q: What is a dog tick repellent and how does it work?
A: Dog tick repellents are products that prevent ticks from attaching and biting into your dog’s skin. They are designed specifically for dogs and can be applied as powders, shampoos, sprays, or collars. Dogs are susceptible to ticks but have sensitive skin so you must use a product that is specifically for canines.
The repellents work in different ways depending on the active ingredients that they contain. Pyrethrins are a common ingredient and they work by interfering with the rapid nerve impulses of the tick which kills them. A synthetic form of pyrethrins is called pyrethroids. They work in the same way as pyrethrins but last for longer. They also repel insects and they will deter ticks from landing on your dog’s body in the first place. Oils, such a peppermint oil, and citrus extracts are natural products that also act on the nervous system of ticks and therefore repel them.
Fipronil and selamectin are recently developed synthetic products which repel ticks. They act by causing a blockage in the way that chemicals are transmitted around the tick’s nervous system and this paralyzes and then kills them. They are usually in a product that releases slowly over time.
Carbamates and organophosphates work by inhibiting how enzymes work in a tick’s nervous system. They are commonly used in tick sprays and collars. Finally, Amitraz is often used in dog collars. It is absorbed into your dog’s skin and prevents ticks from attaching by inhibiting their nervous system.
Modern dog tick repellents are highly effective but nothing can guarantee that no ticks will attach to your dog. You must remain vigilant and check your dog all over if they have spent time outside.
Q: Can I use tick repellent on my lawn?
A: Ticks live on lawns and in yards so if you treat these with pesticides, you reduce the number of ticks that live there. However, you will not be able to eradicate them so you will still need to treat your dog. You must always follow the instructions carefully.
It will also be helpful if you remove leaf litter and clear away tall grass from your yard and lawn edges. It can be useful if you lay a three feet wide barrier of wood chips around the lawn to stop the ticks migrating from the surrounding grassland onto your lawn. It also helps if you mow the lawn frequently and discourage deer, raccoons, and stray dogs who could have ticks on them.
Q: What makes a dog tick repellent effective?
A: To be effective, tick repellent for dogs must do the job it is designed to do and be safe for your dog. Ideally, a repellant should start working very quickly and have a long-lasting effect. Products that repel the ticks and so stop them from landing on your dog in the first place are also a good idea.
In terms of safety, it is vital that you choose a product that is suitable for dogs. It should be gentle on your dog’s skin. It should also be suitable for your dog’s age. Some products have age limits and can only be used on pups that have reached eight or twelve weeks of age. If you are in any doubt about the suitability of a tick repellent, take advice from your vet.
Our Top Pick- Adams Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo
Our top pick of the best tick repellent for dogs has Piperonyl Butoxide and Pyriporoxyfen as active ingredients. It is a shampoo that also contains protein to help with grooming and thanks to the aloe, coconut, and lanolin it can be used on sensitive skin.
It has a pleasant odor and because it is a shampoo, you get to clean your dog while protecting them from fleas and ticks. It can be used on pups over 12 weeks old and can also be used on cats.
Sharon is a Ph.D. scientist and experienced pet content writer. As a life-long animal lover, she now shares her family home with three rabbits, a Syrian hamster, and a Cockapoo puppy. She has a passion for researching accurate and credible information about pets and turning it into easy-to-understand articles that offer practical tips. When it comes to our furry friends, she knows that there is always something new to learn!