Thursday, July 31, 2008

Identifying Ticks - Lyme Disease

Tick identification is important. Everyone is worried about Lyme Disease. So how do I protect myself, my family -and my dog- from this terrible plague? Knowledge. Tick repellent. Tight clothing. Inspections. But what if you've done all that, and you still find an engorged tick? You need to be able to differentiate, or identify, between the different tick species to avoid unnecessary worry and unnecessary trips to the vet.

The tick that primarily carries lyme disease is I. Scapularis, also called the Black-Legged Tick, or the Deer Tick. The deer tick is very very very tiny, approximately the size of a fleck of black pepper. They are very nearly impossible to see on a dog, and can still be difficult to see even when engorged.

The common dog tick can range in size from very small, but clearly visible, to quite large. Then when they're engorged, they blow up like a big greyish/greenish blob.

Read the entire article and view photos.

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