Ticked off Cat

A home remedy to tackle little bloodsuckers

I felt a funny bump on my cat’s throat the other day and on closer inspection saw what looked like a pink bean. Some kind of growth, I thought, fearing the worst.

On closer inspection I noticed with horror spiny black tentacles waving up at me from the base of the bump.

Realising it must be a tick, I attacked it with tweezers, only to come away with a chunk of cat fur, but no tick.

The little bloodsucker was still fixed fast to my kitty who didn’t seem in the least fazed my strange behaviour.

A cross between a Scottish wildcat and a feral cat, we got him from the Glasgow Cats Protection people who told us his skin was tough as old boots and it was a struggle for them to insert his chip because of it.

I decided to take a breather before my next assault on the tick. This time I got my partner to hold kitty while I attempted another pincer movement with the tweezers.

All I got for my efforts was a splash of tick blood on my eyelid – freak out time!!! There followed a mad dash to the washbasin where I rinsed by eye in salty water a zillion times.

Red eyed but undeterred, I returned to the fray.

I noted that I’d crushed the invader to a pulp but his greedy chops were still embedded in the kitty who by now was showing signs of real anxiety, manifested in severe lacerations to my tweezer hand.

Admitting defeat, a prompt visit to the vet was needed. First I checked my bank balance as even the briefest visit to my vet leaves my balance at least £50 lighter.

She twirled a plastic contraption round the base of the now deflated tic’s body and extracted it as easy as pie. Huge sigh of relief all round.

She told me to keep an eye on the spot and bathe it with warm salty water. Thankfully it cleared up.


The vet’s advice was to use Vaseline next time which seemingly smothers the tick and it falls out naturally. The danger occurs when the tick’s head is left in the skin which can swell and fester.

Some ticks carry Lyme disease, but it’s rare in cats as they groom themselves so often. I was also advised to use a flea and tick product called Frontline.

And each time my cat comes back from his wanderings, I have to check for ticks – head, throat and paws are the most common places for ticks to set up home.

Hope my experience helps other feline owners!

Journal Comments

  • patjila