Tick Season Begins: Protect Family, Pets

Ticks are out and this season they mean business.

There are more than 20 different types of ticks in the state but it’s the Blacklegged tick that is known to carry Lyme disease.

9&10’s Megan Woods looked into how to protect your family including your pets from the creepy crawlers.

“It seems like these last few years we’re starting to see more ticks.”

And with the last couple of winters being mild it’s a lot harder to kill off last year’s ticks.

They might be tiny, but they can pose a big threat especially for those on the shoreline of Lake Michigan and Western U.P.

Director of Grand Traverse County Environmental Health Tom Buss says, “It’s a risk to anyone that likes to enjoy the outdoors, like the grassy areas along the woods if you’re at the beach the grassy shoreline.”

Especially the ticks that could carry Lyme disease.

Buss says, “The symptoms generally occur three to 30 days after being bitten and normally happens you’ll notice a rash around the bite it.”

The outdoors isn’t the only place you could have contact with a tick, you can find them on your pets.

Animal Medical Center of Traverse City tests for them when look for heartworm.

Dr. Margaret Schopp says, “In the past year and a half we’ve had one positive heartworm in this practice and close to 30 positive tick borne diseases.”

Sometimes the tick is too small to see, that’s why prevention is so critical for you and your pets.

Buss says, “Wear light clothing because they show up well on light clothing as oppose of dark color daily tick checks of your body and shower promptly after coming indoors.”

Dr. Schopp says, “You need to use a well recommended product that’s going to help prevent not only the tick from biting but kill it fast enough.”

For more information on ticks in Michigan click here.