PET owners beware, tick season is in full swing and it is shaping up to be one of the worst for many years.
Already, Animal Doctors veterinarian Doctor Steve Rose has treated many tick affected casualties at his Lake Road premises .
He said there have been signs that indicate the toxicity of the tick poison has increased.
"The signs and symptoms of those affected so far this season have been far worse than previous years," he said.
"The symptoms in the affected animals have certainly been far more severe.
"Whatever environmental reason the saliva [of the tick] is far stronger."
He said there were two main signs to look out for in your pets.
"It is important to look out for breathing difficulties in your pets," he explained. "Another sign is the wobbly legs."
On the plus side Dr Rose was happy to report there didn't seem to be a lack of anti-tick serum as has occurred in recent years.
He said that could quickly change if there were sudden outbreaks of the problem on the Mid-North Coast and emphasised prevention was the best option.
Levi the exotic four year old cat was treated by Dr Rose recently.
"He came in quite paralysed and was unable to walk," he said.
Thankfully Levi came good and was released from care back to his owners on Monday.
Dr Rose added that a tick bite can take affect within hours and it was critical to seek immediate treatment for the best chance of survival.