One day it’s in the 50s, the next it’s in the single-digits and dumping a foot of snow on the ground. Winters have gotten weirder and more unpredictable over the past few years. Yet there is one trend that’s been consistent – earlier springs and warmer temperatures. This means more ticks, and especially deer ticks, earlier in the year.
Tick prevention is very important. Once it warms up, ticks get very active. When hiking, you can use DEET as a repellent. Permethrin is an option if you apply it to your clothes, but do not apply it to your skin.
The same things that we use as repellents are not safe for animals. If you’re hiking with a dog, consult a veterinarian about what you should use that’s safe for them. Different solutions will be suitable for different types of pets and even breeds. Do not use a human solution on an animal.
None of these repellents is 100-percent effective, so always check after being out and about.
After a hike or work in the wilderness (or even your garden, if it’s grassy), run your hands over your skin to check for ticks. Ticks like to crawl in and around and get settled. Check everywhere. If you find a tick, grasp it with tweezers as far up on the tick’s head as you can. Pull it slowly straight out until it releases its hold on your skin. Don’t pull fast or twist as you pull. This can separate the tick from its head. If the head is left in your skin, it can still be feeding and potentially transmitting disease. You need to remove the whole tick, not just its body.
The same is true if you have pets. Run your hands through your dog’s fur, checking for strange, often hard little lumps. Use the same method to remove the entire tick and make sure that you’ve done so by inspecting the body and ensuring the head is still on it. Tick removal is not pretty, but it has got to be done.
How to Get Rid of Ticks
When you’ve got a notable tick infestation that’s close by, such as a wooded area near your home, you will want to get that removed. They don’t really have many natural predators beyond, strangely enough, opossums – which can mean ticks attract a secondary pest problem. If rodents make it into your home, they can carry ticks on them.
Getting rid of ticks is important in order to be able to enjoy your own home and property safely.
For more information on tick prevention, contact Ransford Pest Control today at 508-756-5197.