What are fleas and ticks?
Fleas and ticks are external, parasitic pests that feed on the blood of both people and animals. Both are small in size, but their bodies expand like a balloon after feeding, causing them to grow in size. The most common species of fleas and ticks in Oklahoma are cat fleas, dog ticks, and deer ticks.
Fleas are about the size of a fleck of dirt. They have hard, flat bodies that are shiny and dark brownish-red in color. Fleas are wingless, but they have powerful back legs that allow them to jump to great heights quickly. Fleas have specialized spines on their mouth, legs, and backs to prevent them from falling off of their host.
Dog ticks are reddish-brown in color and have no distinct markings. After feeding, they turn steel blue-gray in color.
Deer ticks are small in size, their bodies are dark reddish-orange in color, and their legs are darker, almost black, in color.
“Seed Ticks” are not a specific species of tick, rather, this term signifies a specific stage within a tick’s life cycle. “Seed ticks” is how we commonly refer ticks' larval stage (right after the tick hatches from the egg). They resemble a poppy seed with 6 legs, and are rarely noticeable unless found in large groups.
Are fleas and ticks dangerous?
Both fleas and ticks can be considered dangerous pests due to the diseases and parasites they can spread to both people and animals. Fleas' saliva may create an allergic reaction that causes a severe, itchy dermatitis to develop. This itchy dermatitis can lead to a secondary infection that requires medical attention. If pets has a severe infestation they can develop anemia. Fleas are also responsible for infecting people and animals with parasitic tapeworm.
Ticks are responsible for spreading a wide range of diseases. Deer ticks often spread Lyme disease, which can cause serious health consequences. Dog ticks are known for spreading Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Other diseases that ticks may spread include tularemia and ehrilichiosis.
Why do I have a flea and tick problem?
Fleas and ticks are both commonly brought onto properties by wild animals. Raccoons, squirrels, deer, skunks, rabbits, and foxes are all common hosts for both fleas and ticks. Once on your property, they remain until a new host (potentially you, your kids, or pets) happen by that they can attach themselves to and begin to feed. Fleas and ticks are frequently brought into homes on the clothing of people or in the fur of pets. If you own pets and they visit their veterinarian, kennel, or neighborhood park, they could come into contact with fleas and ticks, bringing them back to your home when they return. Fleas regularly find their way inside homes in used furniture or rugs that are infested with adult fleas or their eggs.
Where will I find fleas and ticks?
Ticks live outside in areas of tall grasses, dense vegetation, in ditches, along ponds, fence lines, or at the edges of woods, waiting for an appropriate host to come near that they can attach themselves to. Ticks can be introduced into a home on a person or pet, but most species won’t be able to live successfully indoors.
After hatching, seed ticks immediately seek a host and remain attached to them, feeding for several days. Seed ticks typically attach themselves to lower parts of the body, and sometimes in large numbers, making them easier to spot.
Fleas live outside in shady, sandy, moist areas. Fleas can thrive inside, and may be found in large numbers in areas where pets sleep and spend most of their time. They may also be found in the cracks of floors, behind baseboards, and in upholstered furniture.
How do I get rid of fleas and ticks?
The easiest way to control and eliminate fleas and ticks is with the help of a qualified professional. At Mid America Pest Control, our dedicated technicians provide the year-round services needed to eliminate fleas and ticks from your home and property. Mid America Pest Control is committed to using innovative and eco-friendly solutions to remove fleas, ticks, and other household-invading pests, and prevent their return. To learn more about eliminating fleas and ticks from your Pryor, Oklahoma home and property, reach out to us at Mid America Pest Control and schedule your free 58-Point Pest Analysis!
How can I prevent fleas and tick in the future?
The best way to prevent problems with biting fleas and ticks, and other household-invading pests, is to seek professional pest control from Mid America Pest Control. In addition to our professional services, the following tips can help to prevent problems with fleas and ticks:
Partner with your pet's veterinarian to place them on a year-round flea and tick control program.
Trim wooded areas around your property line.
Place a stone barrier between any wooded areas and your lawn.
Keep your grass cut short.
Cut down overgrown shrubs and landscaping on your property.
Remove bird feeders that could attract wild animals to your property.
Inspect yourself, your children, and your pets for fleas & ticks before coming inside after spending time outdoors. Look closely for tiny “seed ticks.”