The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that illnesses associated with flea, tick, and mosquito bites continue to rise across the United States. The climate in northern Texas is accommodating to these types of pests, particularly during periods of excessive humidity, rainfall, or flooding. The study explained that Americans are largely unprepared for the surge in these dangerous, vector-borne diseases, so here’s what you should know to stay diligent.
Fleas are a very minuscule creature with six legs and a round body with a hard exterior. They have tremendous strength in their rear legs that allows them to leap great distances for being so small in size. They are nocturnal parasites that feed on the blood of humans and animals.
Fleas can pierce the skin to access the blood of their host and spread diseases and cause infection including tapeworm. They typically bite humans on the legs and feet. Some people and animals have an allergic reaction to their saliva and experience significant irritation to the skin. Animals that are overrun by fleas may experience a very harmful blood deficiency.
What Are Ticks?
Like fleas, ticks are parasites that feed on human or animal blood. They are slightly larger and more visible than fleas with a crab-like appearance and eight legs. Many types of ticks exist; however, only four primary varieties generally are seen in Texas as follows:
- American Dog Ticks: This brown-colored species with white or yellow markings prefers to infest dogs and is the most likely to remain indoors.
- Brown Dog Ticks: These are a red or brown color with no markings that also prefer to feed off of canines.
- Lone Star Ticks: They are a red or brown color with one or more white spots that can be up to a ½ inch in size.
- Blacklegged Ticks: Also commonly referred to as deer ticks, they have a darker brown color and will feed on animals or humans.
Diseases That Ticks Spread
Ticks are well-known for the ability to carry Lyme Disease, a harmful bacterial infection that is treated with antibiotics. They also can transmit Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Tick-borne Relapsing Fever, Tularemia, Anaplasmosis, and others.
How Fleas And Ticks Spread Indoors
Fleas and ticks typically attack people or pets while they are outdoors and catch a ride indoors. Once inside, they breed rapidly and create an infestation. They often feed on pets and commonly gather near them or reside in upholstered furniture, rugs, or beds.
Best Practices To Prevent Infestations
People should wear long sleeves and pants during outdoor activity to limit exposure. Repellants are effective when applied to the skin, such as those in the forms of lotions or sprays. Avoid bringing used furniture or other upholstered items inside unless they are properly treated.
Those with cats or dogs should consult with a veterinarian to obtain an effective product that prevents fleas and ticks. Pets should be well-groomed and all bedding washed regularly.
Solutions For Flea And Tick Infestation
Home and business owners may be tempted to consider do-it-yourself products or home remedies to eradicate fleas and ticks. These are typically not viable solutions for eliminating these pests and their eggs. Contacting a licensed pest control professional is the best means of dealing with these problems.
Professional Flea And Tick Extermination In Dallas
Romney Pest Control has been solving pest control problems for property owners in the Dallas area for many years. Our team of professionals conducts a thorough inspection of the premises to create a strategy that will effectively eliminate pests and ensure that the process will not harm people or pets. Contact us today for a free inspection and quote from a member of our friendly staff.