It’s winter, so no bugs, right? Well not entirely. Many people stop flea and tick prevention for their pets in the wintertime. While many ticks do go dormant in the winter, they can come out of hibernation when the soil temperature reaches 45 degrees. The Lone Star Tick and American Dog Tick follow this model.
However, the adult Blacklegged Tick (Deer Tick) that carries Lyme disease, remains active if temperatures are above freezing. So, in our moderate mid-Atlantic climate, you and your pet can still be exposed to ticks and Lyme disease all winter long! The best protection for your pet is to use tick prevention all year.
There are many good products for tick prevention – oral, topical, or a Seresto Collar. There is an option for most any pet. Let us help you figure out the best product for your dog or cat.
Common Ticks in Virginia and Diseases they transmit to you and your pets:
- Blacklegged Tick – Lyme Disease, Anaplasmosis and Babesiosis.
- Lone Star Tick – Ehrlichiosis and Tularemia.
- American Dog Tick – Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (uncommon in Virginia) and Tularemia.
See the Virginia Department of Health website link for a handy tick ID chart with size comparisons, more info on these diseases in people, how to prevent, and how to remove ticks.
- Ticks are not insects; they are arachnids (like spiders).
- Ticks are tiny vampires that suck your blood.
- Ticks don’t jump or fly.
- Ticks can live 2-3 years.
- Ticks can survive underwater longer than you can.