Day 430 The Tick Wars


l took 7 ticks off of Hubble today... SEVEN blood sucking parasites feeding on my dog. Of the seven l would say that three were of the disgusting persuasion, and of those three, one was a nightmarish monster from the very gates of Hell.

You might call that dramatic, but that's probably because you're not someone on the front lines of the tick wars. You likely live in a city with all the guns and crime, unaware there's an even more terrifying war on its way to your doorstep. Not the terrorists all over the place, not the ego-maniacal, homicidal maniacs running around inflicting pain on others -and I'm not even just talking about the NFL- but rather, ticks. 

lt's a war and we're going to be overwhelmed soon!

Seven ticks! Five of them embeded, the other two I was able to pick off before they crawled into his thick, white fur; fur that we will be shaving off as soon as the groomer calls us back.

The first one, the one that started the whole fiasco, was just crawling on his side. Jeannette spotted it this morning after we had a very relaxing am in bed with Blaze ; just the kind of idyllic, sunny "everything seems fine scene" that directly precedes the "oh dear lord what's happening?!" scene when the terrifying monster first reveals itself by devouring a poor unsuspecting family. l picked that first one off, wrapped it up in a Kleenex and tossed it in the toilet. I then decided to give him a "once over"...

The first two, though surprising, were pretty status quo, embedded but easily removed. It's getting easier to do now, as my skills with the tweezers increase and I made short work of them, distracted as I was that the tick-infested Mongrel slept a foot away from my head all night. And then I found the Thing; a massive grey ball of shimmering grossness that I immediatety recoiled from.

"What's wrong?" asked Jeannette.

"Um, I don't even know what that is..." l said, pointing to the creature attached to the back of Hubble's neck, hidden away under his ear. 

It was a full bellied tick, is what it was, and when l plucked it off -with difficulty I might add- it made a disgusting, grisly, bloody mess. I didn't even pop it. It's given me a recuring shiver all day, whenever I think of it. It reminded me of the alien Queen from Starship Troopers.

There was another one just below it, not as big but still very engorged -the bastards- and as I was dealing with that one, and Jeannette was swearing and retching from the last one, the FOURTH in ten minutes, I realised we were under attack. It was war.

l took him for a walk after I got him sorted out, while Jeannette made a kickass breakfast of blueberry pancakes, and in the twenty seconds he was in the roadside grass he was attacked by another tick, a sixth.  The seventh was discovered later, on our evening walk; on his leg, also partially engorged. 

We went about our day as if everything was fine, no reason to upset Blaze after all; I went to a yoga class, my mom came over for dinner, I worked, but everything was tainted. We both knew the game had changed. The world, as we knew it, was over.

The ticks have come my friends.

Bloodsucking fiends!

Undeterred by the madness Jeannette made a great dinner tonight as well. We fired up the barbecue for the first time this year, because the backyard is mine, ticks be damned, and had rib steaks, prawns and calamari. Hubble had a bowl full of iron pills and a blood transfusion.