Get Ready for Even MORE Tick Disease


Where there are ticks, there is tick disease – FACT.

Ticks share diseases with people and pets – FACT

Experts at Oklahoma State University Division of Agriculture Sciences and Natural Resources say no hard freezes during the winter and lots of rain throughout the spring mean there’s going to be more ticks than usual throughout the summer – FACT

Veterinary parasitologists maintain tick disease is on the rise in dogs, though dogs are increasingly protected with products that actually do work (not to mention the Lyme vaccine). Since dogs can be a sentinel for tick disease, this isn’t a good sign for people. And in people and in dogs, most feel that tick disease is likely under-diagnosed.

Here are some tips for people to avoid ticks from the CDC:

CDC Lyme disease cases in Steve Dale's column on Stop LymeAvoid Direct Contact with Ticks

  • Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter.
  • Walk in the center of trails.

Repel Ticks with DEET or Permethrin

  • Use repellents that contain 20 to 30 percent DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide) on exposed skin and clothing for protection that lasts up to several hours. Always follow product instructions. Parents should apply this product to their children, avoiding hands, eyes, and mouth.
  • Use products that contain permethrin on clothing. Treat clothing and gear, such as boots, pants, socks and tents with products containing 0.5 percent permethrin. It remains protective through several washings. Pre-treated clothing is available and may be protective longer.
  • Other repellents registered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Find and Remove Ticks from Your Body

  • Bathe or shower as soon as possible after coming indoors (preferably within two hours) to wash off and more easily find ticks that are crawling on you.
  • Conduct a full-body tick check using a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body upon return from tick-infested areas. Parents should check their children for ticks under the arms, in and around the ears, inside the belly button, behind the knees, between the legs, around the waist, and especially in their hair. Partners can examine where others can not see.
  • Examine gear and pets. Ticks can ride into the home on clothing and pets, then attach to a person later, so carefully examine pets, coats, and day packs. And protect pets using veterinary recommended products.
  • Tumble dry clothes in a dryer on high heat for 10 minutes (or more) to kill ticks on dry clothing after you come indoors.
    • If the clothes are damp, additional time may be needed.
    • If the clothes require washing first, hot water is recommended. Cold and medium temperature water will not kill ticks effectively. If the clothes cannot be washed in hot water, tumble dry on low heat for 90 minutes or high heat for 60 minutes. The clothes should be warm and completely dry.

Learn more about StopLyme campaign, an educational campaign with the American Veterinary Medical Association and the Global Lyme Alliance.