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Our studies

To raise awareness of the dangers of parasite-borne disease in the UK – and to educate pet owners on how to protect against them – MSD Animal Health has carried out two major study projects.

Working closely with the nation’s vets, we asked practices to examine pets at random, and to collect and send in any ticks and fleas found. We partnered with the University of Bristol who monitored and analysed the responses.

The results have proved extremely valuable, providing a clearer picture of the threat fleas and ticks carry to both pets and humans.

Big Flea Project Logo

The Big Flea Project was launched in spring 2018 and aimed to map the many flea species in the UK and discover the diseases they carry.

Practices were asked to examine both dog and cat patients at random and send any samples to the University of Bristol.

1,475 animals were examined from 326 vet practices throughout the UK.

Big Tick Project Logo

The Big Tick Project was launched in April 2015 with the aim to raise awareness about the threat tick borne diseases can be to pets and humans.

Practices were asked to examine dogs at random and send any samples to the University of Bristol. 1,461 practices responded and a staggering 6,372 ticks were sent in for examination.

In the summer of 2016 the study was replicated with cats – the results can be viewed online here.

Further information

Map of threats

Fleas and ticks are nasty! Do you know the threat level in your area?

Why protect

Fleas and ticks aren’t just an itchy nuisance – they can carry dangerous diseases.