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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 07:13 AM Thread Starter
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Turning Dogs into outdoor only?? Advice!

I live in South Florida and have two dogs that last season invested my house with fleas. With diligent treatments of the house and the Dogs I got it under control(the change of seasons helped too). But one thing that I cannot stop is the Tick infestation. My dogs come into my house at night and the room they sleep in is covered in ticks. Just this morning I took 25 off there beds. This happens everyday. I have a two year old child and another on the way and am very tired of worrying about them getting flea and tick bites. I want to build a kennel in my backyard and keep my dogs out side 24/7. I have a large fenced backyard they enjoy but I would like to kennel them up at night. Any thoughts on this? Will I have viscous dogs from being kept outside 24/7?
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 07:31 AM
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I think it'd be better to invest in Frontline or something similar rather than to put your dogs outside, especially in Florida. When we were there last May the temperatures were already up to 95 outside.

I'm in NC, and we have an awful tick problem too, but as long as I treat the yard in the spring and make sure the dog's Frontline stays on in a timely manner, we may find 1-2 on her in the course of the season.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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How do you treat the yard? Is the yard treatment toxic to children? My wife is afraid of the yard treatment being tracked into the house and hurting the babies. What product do you use for the yard?
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 10:15 AM
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Do you have your dogs on a good flea and tick prevention from your vets office? If they aren't be aware that dogs are also susceptible to Lyme disease which is VERY painful for a dog... just putting them out in the back yard without any prevention could be dangerous to their health (they will probably get more ticks on them). In addition to the Flea/Tick prevention there is an inexpensive vaccine available for Lyme disease please consult your vet about this. I would also recommend going over your dogs BEFORE you bring them in the house EVERY TIME to remove all the ticks.

HERE is a good article on why to keep your dogs as indoor pets and some of the potential risks you take placing your pets outdoors. Being completely honest it would be better for the dogs for you re-homed them than to put them out back in a kennel to live outside 24/7 for the rest of their lives after being used to living indoors. As hard as this would be for you, this isn't about your feeling sad or guilty about doing so, it is about the dogs quality of life, and while I hate to see any dog displaced from their home. I fully support anyone who re-homes their pet over kenneling them outside 24/7. I am a firm believer that dogs belong in the home as members of the family, it is hard to have someone be a member of your family if they are not allowed in the house. I LOVE having my dogs near me, and I would miss their companionship if they were outside all the time. Dogs are social animals that crave/need human interaction take that away from a dog and you WILL have problems. What good is having a dog if you can't bring it in the house?

As for spraying your yard and your wife's concerns with the poison, contact your local pest control service and talk with them about the health risks for humans and dogs of putting poison in your yard and what different treatment options are available.
Here is something for you to think about- If your dogs are getting ticks on them so could your kid(s).. I would be VERY concerned with my child playing in a yard that seems to be infested with ticks and the potential risk of them getting Lyme disease. Please look into Lyme Disease and give your wife the information, I am sure she will change her mind about spraying for ticks (I am a mom who does not like pesticides, but I would spray for ticks if they were in my yard). Lyme disease is very painful to both humans and to dogs.

Spraying for ticks and putting the dogs on flea/tick prevention (if they aren't already) and the vaccine would really be the best solution.

Good luck!
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 05:22 PM
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As posted above i think alot of your issue would prolly be helped by putting monthly flea treatments on your dogs, but you have to get a good one, like Frontline plus. You might have to get it from your vet or order it online. the one you buy at walmart or similar stores dosent work as well. HAving your yard professionally sprayed would also help. Also, i dont know what your yard is like. Is there alot of tall grass around? keeping the grass clipped short and cleaning up any debris like fallen leaves and stuff will help alot. Ticks like to climb up tall blades of grass and wait for someone or something to walk past.

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 05:24 PM
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Using Frontline or something similar is very safe. I would treat the dogs with the stuff before you put them to bed for the night. I do with with my pup and that way I don't get any of the stuff on me. He's always dry by the next morning and I can't even tell where the spot was. The best idea would be to talk to a vet about possible dangers for children.

Frontline also offers in-home flea and tick spray which will help, I'm sure there are other brands as well, but this is what I'm familiar with.
Frontline (as far as I'm aware) isn't a super dangerous chemical in small quantities. As long as the child isn't drinking a whole packet of it, he should be fine. I read my Frontline package and all it warned against was swallowing or getting it in your eyes. If you put it on them before your go to bed there shouldn't be any issue.

I used to think this was very expensive, but really it's only $30 for 3 treatments here. The more treatments you buy, the bigger discount you get. At my vet's office I can buy one at a time if I want to. This stuff is really worth it. It's so nice not seeing my dog scratch all the time.

Helpful links:
http://www.1800petmeds.com [they are more expensive than my vet, but at least you can check it out. there are other places as well that you can get this stuff. Some pet stores carry it]


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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 05:49 PM
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I think we paid $14 for one treatment of frontline at our vet, which i thought was kind of expensive too.. but it lasts all month and if you think about the possible cost of treating your house for fleas.. or medical bills if you or one of your pets got sick from the ticks, its not that bad, and if you order online cheaper, just make sure your getting the right dosage for your pets weight.
I think foster and smith has the best price ive found for ordering online.

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 11:31 PM
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we get our yard treated every three months...once it dries its fine, it won't get the kids sick or the dogs...we have no fleas or ticks, we also treat the dogs with frontline from the vet as well as a heart worm pill...my dogs are indoor dogs, I have 4...when they are outside its with us...my grandparents have indoor outdoor dogs that prefer their house outside (they have a doggie door) and they to treat the yard, and the dogs...good luck, I hope you get this tick problem under contrlo quick for your sake, the kids sake and the dogs...

Proud mommy to Ashley

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 05:45 AM Thread Starter
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For general information Frontline and Advantix does not stop ticks from getting on your dog or cat. It keeps them from biting, so the tick get on get brought into the house and then get off so those products do not stop the house investation problem it only helps the dogs. (i use advantix it is rated better than frontline). I am going to treat the room that has the problem in my house this weekend then I am going to research on getting my yard treated professionally.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 05:58 PM
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Have you made a decision about the dogs? I saw that you said "when they come in at night". So are they outside all day and only come in at night? If they are inside during the day, too, then just give them a once over each time they come in. You might not find so many if they are only out there a short time.

I think getting your yard treated is a great step! It'll definitely cut down on what's out there to get on your pups.

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-08-2008, 06:05 AM Thread Starter
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Well I talked to some pro's about the yard and I am going to start a treatment program. I am also going to take care of the ticks which have already invested the area inside my dogs frequent. The two Pro's I talked stated I should be able to get the problem under control fairly easily.

In regards to my dogs spending most of there time out doors. They do spend most days outdoors, I have fenced 3rd of an acre with 3 large Oaks for shade so they enjoy being outside. They are 2 year old and a 3 three old Pitbulls so keeping indoors all the time at this age is not responsible. My house would be destroyed, they need room to play.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-11-2008, 12:04 PM
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Being that you are in Florida, I would strongly suggest you not turn your bullies into outdoor dogs only. They should only be outside supervised as they suffer from heat strokes easily.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-12-2008, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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In the summer months we always bring them during the hottest parts of the day. I just need to get this tick situation under control. I have treated the yard once now and have advantix on the dogs. I have also treated the room where they sleep once. Last night they slept on new beds we just bought them and this morning I picked around 30 ticks out of each bed. That is 60 ticks in one evening, and those are the ones I could see.

Needless to say my Pregnant wife is not happy at all.

Aahhh, if only there was farm with a friendly caretaker to adopt my bullies and they could live in bliss happily ever after...

But that is not reality. My reality is fighting a nasty tick problem.
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