Saskatchewan puppy receives blood transfusion after being bitten by over 700 ticks

Tic Tac having ticks removed

Tic Tac, as she was named by her rescuers, was found near a reserve outside Regina completely covered in ticks. She was so weak she was unable to stand, and had to be rushed to a veterinary clinic.

The vet staff spent four hours picking ticks off the puppy, finding over 300 engorged ticks and 400 more that were not yet engorged. Dr. Tanya Marshall at TM’z Vet Clinic did blood tests and found the dog’s red blood cell count was so low that she needed an emergency blood transfusion. Thankfully, Marshall’s own dog was able to become a blood donor for Tic Tac.

Tic Tac receiving a blood transfusion
After the ticks (and most of Tic Tac’s fur) were removed, the puppy received a blood transfusion from donor dog Kelso.

Caillin Rodonets, director of CC RezQ (an nonprofit that rescues and rehabilitates animals in partnership with rural and reservation communities), said that this was one of the most extreme cases of tick bites she’d seen. “This by far one of the worst cases we’ve ever had,” Rodonets told the CBC. “It’s the first case we’ve ever done a blood transfusion on a dog in a rescue.”

Fortunately, the transfusion was successful, and within an hour Tic Tac began to perk up. Within another hour, she was eating and barking, becoming “a completely different dog,” Rodonets said, from the sluggish, limp animal they’d first brought in.

Tic Tac eating
Within a few hours of receiving the transfusion, Tic Tac was able to get up and eat.

Tic Tac is currently on antibiotics for an infection caused by the bites, and the clinic is also making sure she gets up to date on all her vaccinations. When she’s recovered, she will likely be put up for adoption.

CC RezQs Regina is accepting donations to cover the cost of Tic Tac’s care. E-transfers can be sent to via e-transfer to info@ccrezqs.com, with the password “ticks.”