As summer approaches, so does sunshine, more time playing outdoors, hiking, and exploring nature. Unfortunately, this also means spending more quality time with some of nature’s most heinous pests.
Ticks, which are usually found in tall grass and wooded areas, are one of these heinous pests. At Pegasus Pest Control we think it’s important to make sure that you protect yourself, your family, and your pets. The following facts can help you understand more about ticks and the spread of diseases associated with them.
Ticks Are Not Insects
Believe it or not. Ticks are not insects, despite people calling them insects all the time. Ticks are actually classified as arachnids, which would make them relatives of spiders, scorpions, and mites. If you’ve ever seen a tick up close, you could see it actually resembles a spider with its four pairs of legs and lack of antennae.
Ticks Are Tiny Real-life Vampires
Did you know ticks drink blood to survive? It’s true! Ticks require blood for sustenance. For example, black-legged ticks, feed primarily on the blood of white-tailed deer, but they can also bite mice, small wild animals, birds, and humans.
Ticks Love Dogs
Who can blame them, right? Some tick species, like the American dog tick, or brown dog tick, prefer dogs as hosts. Sadly, dogs are easy targets when playing in the yard, or going for walks in wooded areas. If you’re a pet owner, don’t forget to check your little one frequently for ticks, especially after these activities. If you have a cat, be sure to check it regularly for ticks too. Cats can also be victims.
Ticks Are Risk-Takers
Ticks don’t fly. They crawl up low bushes or tall grass to find a host. Then, they clasp on with their back legs and reach their front legs out to grab onto a passing animal or human. This is called questing. Sometimes, they even drop from where they are and free to fall onto a passing host. Now, that’s risky!
Ticks Are All-You-Can-Eat Creatures
Ticks are actually adapted to feed for long periods of time. They bury their curved little teeth deeply into the skin of the host, that way they can remain attached for days on end and feast. It’s important to know that for infections to be transmitted, like Lyme disease, ticks typically require 24-48 hours of feeding. Prompt removal is essential.
How Do They Affect Humans?
When a tick takes a human as a host, they attach to their skin and start feeding on their blood. The skin to which they are attached may become irritated and turn red. Take note that, if a tick is attached to your pet and it can transmit infections, it could equally transmit these infections to humans. Tick-borne diseases that affect pets such as the Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease are very serious in human beings.
Can They Live In Your House?
It all depends if they’re supported by a good environment. The level of moisture should be around 90%. However, after becoming fully fed, ticks can stay in a moist environment within your house for about 2-3 days. A well-fed adult tick can live in your house for up to 30 days.
Can They Kill Humans?
Truth be told, yes. Tick bites can be fatal to humans. Besides traditional diseases like Lyme disease, there are much more severe pathogens that are life-threatening to humans. One is the Powassan virus, which has a reputation of causing inflammation of the victim’s brain, and its infection progresses more quickly than that of Lyme disease. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that this virus claims 10% of the lives of its victims. This disease has no vaccination or medication, and only management of the condition can ease the situation of the patient.
Tick Exterminator in Sacramento, CA
Were you surprised by any of these facts? Ticks may pose a threat to our health, especially during warm weather. If you have a tick problem in your home, we highly advise having a professional exterminator tackle these heinous arachnids so that you can have peace of mind in your home. Call Pegasus Pest Control today, toll-free on (888) 885-5017 and we will inspect your home for free!