Ticks are already out in western Massachusetts

Franklin County

SUNDERLAND, Mass. (WWLP)- A warmer February woke up the ticks in western Massachusetts.

Ticks can be a year-round problem, but they’re most active from March to mid-May and from mid-August to November. You’re more likely to encounter them in the woods and tall grass, but ticks can find you anywhere.

“You gotta check your dog even if they are in the yard,” said Greenfield dog owner, Pamela Adams. “We are out in the woods all the time, but you just have to check when you come in.”

When it comes to keeping your pets protected from ticks, you have a few different options. There are topicals, which you apply to your dog or cat’s skin. There are also collars which tend to be the most popular because they can last anywhere from 6 to 8 months. Ticks can infect humans, but they tend to be more of a problem for dogs.

“With people they can develop really debilitating issues; arthritis, nerve problems, neurologic problems. With dogs, we actually can see life-threatening kidney disease,” said Dr. Steven Ellis, Veterinarian at the Sunderland Animal Hospital.

Dr. Ellis told 22News ticks can transmit lyme disease, the powassan virus, and rocky mountain spotted fever. He said ticks latch onto dogs more than humans because of their fur.

Dr. Ellis advises tucking the bottom of your pants into your socks when you’re walking in the woods or tall grass.

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