Search Add New Question How do I remove a tick from the top of my cat’s head? Pippa Elliott, MRCVS Veterinarian, Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Pippa Elliott, MRCVS Use exactly the same method described in the article. The main problem is keeping the cat still. It may help to have a friend hold the cat so you have both hands free to remove the tick. It can be helpful to wet the fur first, so that it parts and allows you to better see the tick. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 8 Helpful 4 How do I pull a tick off my cat’s nose? wikiHow Contributor Hold her head gently so she can relax. Then use small thin tweezers to remove it. Make sure to put cat-safe hydrocortisone on it with a Q tip. Make sure to give kitty a treat afterwards for being a good kitty! Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 2 Helpful 7 My cat has a tick right next to her eye. How do I remove it safely without hurting her? wikiHow Contributor Get really thin/small tweezers and grab the tick by its whole body and pull it out. If you don’t grab it by its whole body its head may still be intact inside of the cat. So make sure you do it correctly. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 5 Helpful 10 How can I take the tick off of my cat’s ear? wikiHow Contributor You could take the cat to the vet to get it removed, or try removing it with tweezers. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 2 Helpful 4 My cat has what appeared to be a black scab on his back. How can I determine if this is a tick or not? Or should I just remove it as directed, in case it is? wikiHow Contributor See your vet for advice. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 0 Helpful 1 What will happen if I leave the tick on my cat? Will it come off on its own? wikiHow Contributor No. It will grow bigger and go into the skin, causing a clinical stage of Lyme disease. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 4 Helpful 4 What will happen if I leave the tick? wikiHow Contributor It will burrow under your cat’s skin and cause problems. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 3 Helpful 3 Is the weather ever too cold for ticks? Catharine Doyle Not for ticks on a cat, no. Cats are warmblooded, and they have fur to protect them from the cold so even their unwelcomed guests are warm. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 2 Helpful 2 My cat has a tick on him that needs to be removed but we don’t have any rubbing alcohol to put the tick in after we pull it off. Any other way to kill it? wikiHow Contributor After removing the tick, you can burn it or flush it down the toilet. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 15 Helpful 4 How do I remove a tick when my cat is unfriendly? wikiHow Contributor You may have to take it to the vet if you can’t keep the cat still long enough to extract the tick yourself. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 0 Helpful 0 Show more answers
Cat ticks key facts Ticks can cause disease by transmitting bacteria and microbes when they bite an animal or human They are common in woodland, grassland and heath areas Check your cat and for ticks when they come in from outdoors and remove them quickly What are cat ticks? Cat ticks are spider-like, egg-shaped, blood-sucking creepy crawlies. Photo by Andre Karwath. Cat ticks are spider-like, egg-shaped, blood-sucking creepy crawlies. They have eight legs and vary in size from about 1mm to 1cm long. Adult ticks look a bit like small spiders. Ticks are common in woodland, grassland and heath areas, but can also be found in your garden if you live in an area with lots of wildlife. Your cat is most likely to come across them if you live near areas with lots of deer or sheep, or in areas where there are wildlife like hedgehogs or rabbits. You are most likely to come across ticks between spring and autumn, but they are active throughout the year. Ticks don’t fly or jump, but climb or drop on to your cat’s coat when you brush past the area they are sitting in. How do I know if my cat has a tick? Ticks are big enough to spot. Run your hands over your cat’s body when they come home for dinner each evening to check for any lumps or bumps. A tick will feel like a small bump on your pet’s skin. They tend to attach themselves to areas around a cat’s head, neck, ear and feet. Brushing also helps to remove them. Ticks vary in size between 1mm and 1cm long, depending on their age. They look like tiny spiders with a whiteish, egg-shaped body. This body becomes larger and darker as it fills with blood. How do I remove cat ticks safely? Cat ticks carry diseases, so it’s important to remove any that attach themselves to your cat as soon as possible. Rapid removal lessens the risk of disease. This can be tricky, as you need to be careful not to squeeze the tick’s body, or allow its head to get stuck inside your cat. Squeezing a tick’s body can cause it to expel blood back into your cat, increasing the risk of infection. Twisting them off your cat is the best removal method, and pet shops sell handy tick-removal devices to make this easier. Ask your vet for advice. Why should I protect against cat ticks? Cat ticks vary in size from 1mm to 1cm. Photo by Stuart Meek. Cat ticks are very good at passing on infections from one animal to another but dogs are much more at risk that cats. They feed by biting an animal and feasting on blood. This may take several days. Once they have had enough, they drop off. Cat ticks transmit microbes that cause diseases, such as Lyme disease and babesiosis but it’s unusual for cats to catch these diseases. If you live in an area with cat ticks, it’s a good idea to use a tick treatment that will kill them if they attach. Spot on treatments and collars are available and it’s best to consult your vet about which is most suitable for your pet. Read the instructions very carefully as some treatments are for dogs only and can be very dangerous to cats and can even kill them. If you own a cat and a dog and you need to protect your dog against ticks, ask your vet which treatment is safe for a multipet household before treating any of your pets. Never use a tick treatment designed for dogs on your cat. This is extremely dangerous and could kill your cat. What is Lyme disease? Lyme disease is a serious bacterial infection that is spread by ticks. If your cat has Lyme disease they may appear lethargic and lose their appetite, become lame or have sore or stiff joints. Lyme disease in cats in the UK is extremely uncommon. If you think your pet has Lyme disease, contact your vet. They can perform tests and start treatment with antibiotics. What is babesiosis and does it affect cats? Babesiosis is extremely rare in the UK and the tick that spreads it is so far only found in southern England and on the continent. The first cases of dogs being treated for the disease, caused by the bacterium Babesia, were reported in March 2016. Recent confirmed cases of babesiosis in Essex have been caused by the Babesia canis strain. This is not thought to affect cats or other animals and is not a risk to humans.
To remove an attached tick, use a pair of fine-tipped tweezers or special tick removal instruments. These special devices allow one to remove the tick without squeezing the tick body. This is important as you do not want to crush the tick and force harmful bacteria to leave the tick and enter your pet’s bloodstream. Grab the tick by the head or mouth parts right where they enter the skin. Do not grasp the tick by the body. Without jerking, pull firmly and steadily directly outward. Do not twist the tick as you are pulling. Using methods such as applying petroleum jelly, a hot match, or alcohol will NOT cause the tick to ‘back out.’ In fact, these irritants may cause the tick to deposit more disease-carrying saliva in the wound. After removing the tick, place it in a jar of alcohol to kill it. Ticks are NOT killed by flushing them down the toilet. Clean the bite wound with a disinfectant. If you want to, apply a small amount of a triple antibiotic ointment. Wash your hands thoroughly. Please do not use your fingers to remove or dispose of the tick. We do not want you in contact with a potentially disease-carrying tick. Do NOT squash the tick with your fingers. The contents of the tick can transmit disease. Once an embedded tick is manually removed, it is not uncommon for a welt and skin reaction to occur. A little hydrocortisone spray will help alleviate the irritation, but it may take a week or more for healing to take place. In some cases, the tick bite may permanently scar leaving a hairless area. This skin irritation is due to a reaction to tick saliva. Do not be worried about the tick head staying in; it rarely happens.