A lesson on Lyme Disease from Professor Daisy
Students, today we are going to talk about a serious subject: Lyme disease. Please listen carefully, because Lyme disease is no joke. It can cause symptoms like swollen, painful joints, lameness in the legs, loss of appetite, fever, and can even lead to kidney disease!
You might think that you can get this disease from eating too many limes, but you would be incorrect. Even though limes are disgusting, they can’t cause you to get this disease.
Excuse me a moment while I move my props out of the way…
Here is the real culprit behind Lyme disease: TICKS! People, dogs, and even cats can get this disease if they’re bitten by a tick carrying the Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria that causes Lyme disease. The tick that can transmit the disease-causing bacteria is the deer tick, also known as the black-legged tick. Do not worry–as far as I know, the catnip-stuffed toy tick is safe.
If you suspect your dog or cat could have Lyme disease, go to the veterinarian right away. The usual treatment is a course of antibiotics. Since it is No Fun to be sick or to take medicine, the best course of action is to PREVENT getting Lyme Disease in the first place.
What can you do to kick those ticks to the curb?
- Get rid of ticks in your backyard with a yard spray.
- After you play outside, ask your mom or dad to check your fur for ticks. Even though pets cannot spread the disease to humans, we can carry ticks inside the home on our fur by mistake.
- If you see a tick on your body, it is okay to scream (but just once). Then, remove the tick right away using a special tick-removal tool. The sooner the tick is removed, the lower the chance that you will get infected!
- If ticks are inside your home, get rid of ’em with a carpet and upholstery spray.
- To keep you safe year-round, ask your mom or dad to treat you every month with a topical product for fleas and ticks.
- If you are a dog, you have even more options! You can use a tick collar, or ask your vet if you can try NexGard, a yummy beef-flavored soft chew that protects dogs from fleas and ticks.
My final advice? Save the limes for a batch of limeade (or some margaritas if you are over 21).