Sometimes stray and abandoned dogs bring friends along for the ride. If you find that your foster dam has fleas, ticks, ringworm, or tapeworms, here is the protocol:
You cannot use flea and tick shampoo on a pregnant or nursing dog. It will hurt her and her puppies. Instead we recommend good old fashioned Dawn Dishwashing Soap. Dawn Dish Soap kills fleas by drowning them. It is heavy enough to sink fleas and also prevents them from repelling the water. It is also safe for puppies.
Here is an article with some other helpful and natural flea remedies: Fleas!
Again, flea and tick shampoo is not safe for pregnant or nursing dogs, or their puppies. If you find a tick or ticks on a dog, you will need to pull it off with tweezers, disinfect the wound, kill the tick in alcohol, and save the carcass (just in case in the dog gets sick). If there are many ticks on a dog, veterinary intervention will be involved.
Fortunately, ticks aren’t a huge issue in Colorado, but if you should find one on a dog here is some helpful information: Ticks Yuck!
Ringworm is one of those things that sounds worse than it is. It is contagious, but it is also easy to cure. If you suspect your dog has ringworm and she is pregnant or nursing, Vagisil works best. It is safe for dogs and very effective in curing ringworm. Rub it on the infected areas twice per day for one week and the parasite will disappear. Make sure to wash your hands following the administration of the medication.
Tinactin also works well, but it is necessary that you prevent the dog from licking the area for at least 15 minutes following the application of the medication. This can be difficult when puppies are involved.
Usually when ringworm is present the dog will be itchy, have hair loss surrounding the spot of infection, and a ring shaped rash:
Luckily tapeworms show up rarely in Colorado dogs, because EWW! When they do, we need to attack them quickly to prevent the whole pack from getting sick. The medication that works best is Praziquantel and it can be purchased at any neighborhood Petsmart. It is pricey though, so please call so we can supply you with the medication.