Stories about the little red things that live in my house. By Graham Milldrum.
By Graham Milldrum
Ticks. The only reason they aren’t the worst pest is because fleas exist. They are obscene little creatures, just a hard shell, legs and a blood-sucking, flesh chewing maw.
We keep finding them. We went out for a walk in the prarie. Everyone had a great time. Sal was bounding around like Tigger while Biggs vanished and reappeared in the tall grass. Even Boeing was having a good time, going as far as to leave the path to sniff around. Addy, the guest dog, had a great time stealing the bottle I was throwing for Biggs.
Lurking in the dead grass, shot through with new growth, were ticks. Roughly a million of them, if my emotional response is to be believed. They seemed to be everywhere, crawling about and gnawing away. Even now my legs flinch at the thought, an atavistic response to the beasts. I pulled seven of them off myself, attempting to crush the little monsters between my fingernails.
Pulling off a new tick is a scary thing. Their legs are still running, grasping at skin and hair. Sometimes they have just started to burrow into your flesh. And there’s the fear of infection. But they pop out, taking with them just a little bit of you.
But it’s worse on the boys. It’s the fur. That unique luxurious coat is perfect for fleas. The long fur is a great place to get aboard. Then the flea starts burrowing its way through the luxurious undercoat that makes a corgi such a wonder to pet. There they hide, eating their way into the soft white and brown skin. And they suck and suck, growing larger and larger until they are massive bags of disease, filth and horror.
Bags that are almost impossible to find. The ticks weave their legs into that beautiful fur and they seem to drift through it. So it take upwards of five minutes to find the damn things again. Then it’s a painfully slow process to remove, as you don’t want to leave the head behind. You want to pull the whole thing out.
And crush it, smash it, flush it down the drain. I feel like building a pyre for them.
The new flea medication seems to be helping, but ever trip we make, no matter how much joy the dogs derive, carries with it fear. The fear that I will find one of those damn ticks on one of my boys. And that I will have to hunt it down.
Proper tick removal:
I will point out that Drs. Foster and Smith use this channel to sell their various products. However, they give excellent advice.
Well, it depends on the corgi’s personality. To use the boyza:
Biggs wants nothing to do with me about 80% of the time. Then about 18% of the time he wants to kill me. The remaining 2% of the time he is actually interested in being petted, if you don’t make eye contact.
Sal will normally come to you, even if you don’t want him to. But sometimes he just seems to decide that he has other things to do. Like look at you quizzically. Or bark at invisible squirrels. Or run around in a circle.
Boeing actively ignores you unless you look at him and say his name very sternly. Or there is the sound of food.
Come to think of it, all of them come to the sound of food. So maybe you should tie a sausage around your ankle. Then your corgi will follow you at all times.