Local news and opinion reaching the communities of nosara, samarA and Nicoya
Log in |
Return to homepage
home regional community sports entertainment surf nature health en Espaņol English
December 09
January 2010
February 2010
Water Edition
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010
June 2010
July 2010
August 2010
September 10
October 10
November 10
December 10
January 2011
February 2011
March 2011
April 2011
May 2011
June 2011
July 2011
August 2011
September 11
October 11
November 11
December 11
January 2012
February 2012
March 2012
April 2012
May 2012
June 2012
July 2012
August 2012
September 12
October 12
November 12
December 12
January 13
February 13
March 13
April 13
May 13
  El Pais
  Inside Costa Rica
  Costa Spirit
  Q Costa Rica
  Today Costa Rica
  El Sabanero
  Nosara Animal Care
  Nosara Info
Esquelita de Nosara
  Friends of Nosara
  Nosara Civic Association

Pet Owners Beware: Canines Hit Hard By Tick Fever

By Nosara Animal Care and Samantha Pollock

The brush and jungle surrounding the beaches of Guiones, Pelada and Samara are writhing with hundreds of thousands of ticks. These tiny insects burrow their way beneath the skin of furry animals and pose a major threat.  

Animal experts in the Nosara and surrounding districts are warning pet owners of an outbreak of canine ehrlichosis, better known as tick fever. According to Dr. Enrique Delgado, a vet who services the Nicoya and Nosara districts, the prevalence of ehrlichiosis in Costa Rica is extremely high.

"The rate is particularly high in the pacific coast of our country, recorded data indicates a disease prevalence of 40 to 60 per cent in dogs, however the daily experience in the clinics shows the infection rate could well reach 80 to 90 per cent in certain areas," said Dr. Delgado.

The warm, humid climate along with an environment conducive to reproduction makes Guanacaste the perfect breeding ground for a healthy population of ticks.

Dr. Carl Wells, of Nosara Animal Clinic's board of directors suggests free wandering dogs are much more likely to encounter ticks. He attributes the high rate of canine infection to the high population of ticks, the large open spaces available to dogs and the freedom granted to the area's dogs by pet owners and community members.



• Lack of energy
• Loss of appetite
• Fever
• Bleeding from nose
• Blood in urine or stools
• Swollen legs
• Discomfort in joints
• Problems with eyes

• Keep dogs on leash, prevent free roaming
• Daily, thorough inspection
• Collars & Sprays with active ingredient Amitraz
• Dectomax injections
• Skin products; Frontline or Advantix
• Regular check-ups and blood tests


Human Health

It is not just canine health we have to be worried about when it comes to ticks. According to Dr. Delgado Ehrlichia canis can also infect humans. Transmission occurs through tick bite and symptoms can range from flue like to signs similar to those with a dengue hemorrhagic fever. Those most susceptible to the illness are children, elderly and those persons with weakened immune systems.



"There is no vaccine for ehrlichosis which means tick control is the cornerstone to prevention of the disease," said Dr. Wells.

If your pet already has tick fever it is important to know what to look for. Detection of canine ehrlichiosis can be difficult. The disease has three distinct stages. The initial infection or acute phase occurs between seven to 22 days after contact.

During this initial phase you may notice your pet is experiencing a general depression and lack of appetite. A subclinical, or silent stage, follows. During this phase there are no visible symptoms and it can last for months or even years. The third and final stage is referred to as the chronic stage. During this phase many complications may arise; from kidney failure, bleeding, autoimmune hemolytic anemia, bone marrow suppression to stroke. At this stage treatment is extremely complicated and the survival rate is low.

"As a general rule the rate of successful treatment is higher the earlier the diagnosis and it decreases dramatically as the disease progresses," said Delgado. "This is serious; if we have dogs at home they should get the care they need to keep them happy and healthy so we deserve to enjoy their companionship and love."


More Nature News

Recycling the World

The students from Semillas del Mundo completed a Learning Based Project that motivated them to share their knowledge with the community. The project consisted of recycling, reusing and reducing material.

Future of Horseback Tours in Nosara Up for Debate

There is nothing more picturesque than a sunset horseback ride along the beach and there is no better place than the sandy coast of Nosara. The problem is, not only does this simple and beautiful act have a negative impact on the beach ecosystem, it is also illegal.


Contact us: NOSARA [email protected] / PUBLICITY and ADVERTISING [email protected]
Copyright 2012© The Voice of Nosara