Tick control: The next step
Too often clients don’t understand the threat that parasites pose to their pets’ health, their kids’ health, and their own. To keep pet owners in the know, take the next step with these tick tips:
1. Do your research. Find out which ticks are prevalent in your area and what diseases they carry. Use the handout on p. 12 to educate your team about the risks in your region.
2. Ready your team. Your message is much more effective if the entire team is on the same page. Schedule regular team meetings to get everyone excited about tick control and prepare every team member to answer clients questions about ticks.
3. Say it—and repeat it. Clients need to hear your message five to 10 times before they get it. And not everyone learns by listening. Show pet owners pictures of ticks and life cycles, handouts on tick-borne diseases, and so on. The handouts on pages 10 and 11 will get you started.
4. Make testing a habit. Offer an in-clinic test that detects common tick-borne diseases and test your patients yearly. If the results come back negative, tell clients to keep up the good work with preventives. If the results are positive, it will reinforce your recommendation for tick control.
5. Get clients involved. Pet owners need to understand what you’re asking them to do. When you dispense a tick preventive, explain what you expect the product to do and why they should use it. Demonstrate how to apply it so you know clients can administer it properly. Make sure they feel comfortable with the process before they leave your clinic.