Summer in Fort Worth and other North Texas cities makes people thing of the pool, picnics, hiking, and time outdoors. Unfortunately, time outdoors comes with the risk of ticks. In fact, this writer killed a tick on my desk yesterday morning.
How Do Ticks End Up In Your Home?
Deer ticks and other tick breeds come into our homes on dogs, cats, our clothing and even rodents. They come into our yards on outdoor animals like raccoons, opossums, and squirrels. They even fly in on birds. In North Texas we have the brown dog tick, deer tick, American dog tick, and, of course, the lone star tick. These are all hard-shelled ticks.
Ticks are often found around the perimeter of a home because the shaded areas are where the rodents and other animals like to take shelter, especially if the perimeter includes trees, shrubs and tall grasses. These are the places that ticks reside.
What Diseases Do Ticks Carry?
Ticks are carriers of several blood-borne diseases. Lyme disease is the most serious. Lyme disease in Texas is often misdiagnosed since many physicians wrongly believe that Texas has few ticks. There is a myth that the fire ants in Texas control the ticks. This is simply not true. Ticks exist in Texas and they do carry illnesses. In Texas there are six tick-borne illnesses. All have similar flu-like symptoms. Lyme disease will have a rash that starts at the site of the tick bite. Untreated, Lyme disease will cause arthritis in the joints, nerve pain with possible facial droop and headaches. It can cause life-long ailments and leave a person debilitated.
If you find a tick on yourself, a child or a pet, there are right ways and wrong ways to remove them. Do not believe the tick-removing myths of petroleum jelly or nail polish.
The best way to remove a tick according to the CDC (Center for Disease Control) includes:
- Using rubber gloves and a tweezers, grab hold of the tick as close to the skin as possible.
- Pull upward with steady pressure.
- Do not twist or jerk the tick – the head or mouth can be left behind.
- Do not crush the tick; the fluids can be infectious.
- Dispose of the tick immediately by putting it in alcohol, placing it in a sealed bag and taping it closed-or- flush it down a toilet.
- After removal, thoroughly clean and disinfect the area of the bite, then wash hands with warm water and soap.
How Do You Control Ticks?
A professional pest control company, such as Buzz Kill Pest Control in Fort Worth, can be effective in reducing the number of ticks in your yard by applying the proper chemical to the perimeter of your home and controlling other outdoor rodents from your yard. The rest of the management can be done by the property owner. Ticks don’t come into your home or yard on their own. They ride in on animals and birds, so anything you do to keep wildlife out of your yard, the better.
- Be sure to remove piles of leaves and trimmings.
- Keep grass mowed regularly.
- Dispose of all trash properly, keeping lids on cans.
- Protect any outdoor food sources, like gardens, from larger animals.
- Remove wood piles from around the house or near walkways.
- Keep swing sets or children’s play areas away from trees and fences.
- Make sure all pets have veterinarian prescribed tick control products on a regular basis.
If You Need Tick Control Buzz Kill Can Help!
Summer is about outdoor fun. Take care of your yard, pets and home to eliminate any worry about ticks and tick-borne diseases. If you are noticing ticks in or around your home, reach out to Buzz Kill Pest Control today, we’re here to help.