Tick and flea season is especially bad this year, but it’s not just a problem for your pets.
That's because some ticks carry Lyme disease, a debilitating disease which stays with you for life.
Stuart Amols just gave his dog a flea bath because she had too many fleas.
"It seems pretty bad this year. More so ticks than fleas. she's been having, we're pulling them off left and right," said Amols.
And Amols is not the only pet owner seeing more parasites this year.
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Veterinarians said the tick and flea problem this year is worse than previous years and not just for dogs, but also for cats.
"It is bad," said Melissa Murphy with Atlantic Animal Hospital. "Florida in general is pretty bad for parasites. But when the weather gets warms like it is now, the fleas and ticks are terrible."
While easily treatable with a bath, medicine or collars, those ticks can make their way into your home.
Some ticks carry diseases which are dangerous to humans, like Lyme disease.
"You can't get it directly from your pet, but if your pet has ticks, or you've been walking your pet in a tick-infested area, and you get a tick on you, it is possible for you to get the Lyme disease," said Murphy.
According the Centers for Disease Control, Lyme disease is a debilitating illness which can affect the nervous system and can spread to the person's joints and the heart.
And the tick which carries Lyme disease is the deer tick which also known as the blacklegged tick.
The CDC recommends you avoid tick infested areas, and remove one right away if you see a tick on you.
REMOVING A TICK
The most common way to remove a tick is to use tweezers. But it's extremely important that when you use tweezers, that you remove the whole tick, including the head and mouth parts.
These tick removal tips come from the ASPCA.
- Be ready to put the tick in something once you've removed it. Your vet or doctor may need it for tests if you or your pet falls ill. The best option is a screw-top jar with rubbing alcohol.
- Wear gloves so you're never in direct contact with the tick or the pet's bite area.
- Secure your pet so they don't squirm. You may need to get someone else to help.
- Treat the bite area with rubbing alcohol. Using a pair of clean tweezers, grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible. Pull straight up with steady and even pressure. Don't jerk the tick because you may leave mouth parts embedded in you or your pet, or cause the tick to regurgitate infective fluids. Also, don't squeeze or crush the tick's body.
- If some part of the tick gets left behind, apply a warm compress to the area. Don't try to use tweezers to go after the extra parts.
- Disinfect the bite area and wash your hands with soap and water. Also, be sure to sterilize your tweezers after use.
- Be sure to watch the bite area. If it becomes red or inflamed, be sure to head to the doctor or the vet.
There are alternative techniques and products you can use, including a Tick Key or Tick SR. Be sure to discuss any of these with your vet or doctor.