IT’S PEAK DEER TICK SEASON! 5 FUN (BUT MOSTLY HORRIFYING) FACTS ABOUT DEER TICKS…

Did you know right now is currently peak deer tick season?

5 fun (but mostly horrifying) facts about ticks

  1. Did you know that adult deer tick season starts/peaks around the 15th of October and continues throughout the whole winter?  Contrary to previous belief – instead of dying or hibernating after the first freeze, adult deer ticks become more active after the first freeze of the year.  This is the most common time of year that people start becoming lax with their pets flea and tick medication as the weather is colder – but this is one of the most important times of the year to keep it going!  Here at Medfield Veterinary Clinic and Westwood Veterinary Care we encourage full year round flea and tick prevention.
  2. If you pick a tick off your dog (or yourself) this time of year – do you know that there is an 80% chance that this is an adult deer tick?  Adult deer ticks can look large and grey (similar to dog ticks) when fully engorged.  Want to know what type of tick you have removed – check out tickencounter.org for more information.
  3. Did you know that in our area greater than 50% of the adult deer ticks carry Lyme disease?  The best way to prevent transmission of the disease is to quickly remove ticks after attachment (Lyme transmission requires 24-48 hours of a tick feeding on you or your animal), monthly flea and tick prevention for your pets and the Lyme vaccine for dogs.
  4. Did you know that ticks can be found up high in the woods not just down on the ground?  This time of year the adults are looking for one final blood meal before laying their thousands of eggs – and are very active trying to find a host.  In doing so they will often climb up tall blades of grass, bushes or reeds to do so.  So keep in mind, this time of year treating your shoes with repellants are not enough to protect you from unwanted creepy crawlers.
  5. Did you know that Lyme is not the only disease we worry about from ticks in this area?  Our ticks can be infested with other bacteria that can cause diseases like Anaplasma, Ehrlichia and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.  Some of these other tick borne illness have faster transmission times and your dog can become infected with after just 2 hours of attachment!

Have any questions or concerns about ticks and your pet – or what the best prevention for your pets lifestyle?  Give us a call or stop on by Medfield Veterinary Clinic or Westwood Veterinary Care we would love to answer any questions you might have!

-Dr. Sara Buckley

Medfield Veterinary Clinic and Westwood Veterinary Care are proudly serving the communities of Westwood, Norwood, Walpole, Dover, Dedham, Canton, Sherborn, Millis and Medfield.

For more information on creepy crawlers and the diseases they carry please visit:

http://tickencounter.org/

http://www.capcvet.org/

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