It’s that time of year again when the weather warms up and you get sunshine & TICKS!

This is quite a new topic for me as I now live in New Jersey, USA and coming from the UK I have only ever seen one tick in my entire life my dog of 11 years never got them which was not for the lack of walking in woodland and long grass. Maybe I was just super lucky!

So imagine my surprise when we are walking today in brilliant sunshine, across a wonderful open pasture and upon returning to the car I see a rather large tick scurrying down my arm, followed by 2 more on my sweater. One dog had 3 scurrying around. They are all flea and tick-treated but I guess it’s the season!

We have now brought a tick tool which we have had success with easy removal (see image)

Do you have any tick stories or natural tick-repellant ideas for humans & pets?

This article explains the life cycle and what diseases they can transmit:

Tick tool Dalmatian approved :rofl: :dog:


@Carla-Moderator: Oh, I’m so sorry you had to go through that! I am a bit of a scaredy-cat with ticks, mosquitos, spiders, and the like. Regarding ticks, I’m especially worried about lyme disease, though I haven’t researched it enough to know whether I’m overreacting. But I always wear a hat when I’m going to be under trees.

Looking forward to hearing from other members who know more.

@Carla-Moderator , I sympathize with you. I lived in NJ and had the same fears. I’m in Virginia now and they’re here too.

My mom, a gardener who lived in suburban Philadelphia, had a serious case of Lyme disease, as it wasn’t caught until she had neurological symptoms. She was rushed to the e.r. at one point and I remember driving her a long distance to a dr. who specialized in treating it. I stayed with her and administered the prescribed injections. She ended up having a picc line inserted for IV antibiotics but was still left with some neuro symptoms.

I also had a friend (in NJ) who had long-term Lyme disease. She was basically disabled by it. It’s no joke.

What I do now is – and this may be in one of the articles you posted, I haven’t read them, is wear long sleeves and long pants that are tucked into my socks when I’m in the woods during warm weather. I spray the outside of my clothing w/Deet. It’s not a great chemical but it works and it’s worth it to avoid Lyme or other tick-borne disease, e.g. babesiosis My former internist contracted that. She was unable to work for a long time.

Possums are your friends, they eat ticks, and diatomaceous earth spread in your yard also cuts down on ticks.


We had a real problem with ticks on Vancouver Island, I have seen them crawling over my Springer like fleas after a walk in the woods … she was tick and flea treated but our yard had woodland like areas, was open and we had deer … lots of deer. I checked her at least twice a day and Holly (and my horse actually) had a daily helping of garlic, fleas and ticks hate the smell which makes it a natural repellant (mosquitos & flies too)

A natural flea and tick spray can be made up of lemon and rosemary … this article has some great natural remedy tips

Finally, you’ve found a tick and not sure how to remove, even though you have your “magic” tick remover? A video tutorial, readily available here or via You Tube will help you step by step, tick by tick.

Happy safe and tick free walking.


@geoff.hom Thank you, I am the same… I had one attached to me and I am going, to be honest, I completely freaked out as my husband removed it. Luckily if you remove them quickly I think there is less chance of Disease being spread.

I had a quick Google as I was sure they helped our ecosystem in some way (to help my fear)

However, there are several quite important benefits that ticks provide our ecosystem, that most of us have probably not thought very much about! And believe us, you’ll be surprised to learn that ticks are, in fact, very important for the ecosystem!

1. They serve as food for other animals.
2. The population of ticks can tell the scientists how the ecosystem is doing in general.
3. They take part in providing the diversity of life on our planet since ticks carry various microorganisms and bacteria.
4. Ticks help to keep animal populations in check.


@mars Thank you and no the articles do not share very much about prevention, more about the life cycle and seasons etc.

Thank you for sharing and I am so sorry to hear about your mum and friend, but helpful to hear real-life stories to know how serious it is.

Great advice and I will get tucking in my socks and wearing long sleeves! Also, @Angela-HeadOfCommunity I will make some natural spray!


Were you able to quickly get the ticks off your arm and sweater? I know several east coast people who have Lyme disease. It’s definitely something that needs quick action and a good awareness to address for those coming from non tick environments.

I just recently came off a month of sits in Vermont then traveling throughout New England visiting friend’s etc. It was most certainly warming up as I wad getting ready to fly back to the west coast.

1 Like

So sorry to hear about your Mom snd friend’s. I too, know someone with long term Lyme disease, and she contracted it while living in the woods of Mendocino on the Northern California coast. California has it too as ticks are spreding out west…


They recommend wearing long sleeves and white as one form of prevention as well as thorough checks.


@Catgoddess_99 Thank you, we managed to take quick action, luckily it was hot weather so it was a short walk and not a long exposure time!

I agree that awareness is key as I was not used to them and did not know all of the issues with getting bitten! I will definitely be more aware and proactive now. Appreciate our community’s help and recommendations on this :slight_smile:

1 Like

I never heard about wearing white clothing, so looked it up and found this citation. Although this study had a small sampling, it seems the idea that white clothing attracts fewer ticks has been refuted.

Clinical Trial

Scand J Infect Dis

. 2005;37(5):361-4.

doi: 10.1080/00365540410021216.

Detecting ticks on light versus dark clothing

Louise Stjernberg 1, Johan Berglund

Affiliations expand


It is a common belief that ticks are more visible and easier to detect on light clothing in comparison with dark clothing. We studied which of the clothing, light or dark, had the least attractive effect on Ixodes ricinus, thus minimizing exposure and thereby in theory helping to prevent tick-borne diseases in humans. 10 participants, exposed by walking in tick endemic areas, wore alternately light and dark clothing before every new exposure. Nymphal and adult ticks on the clothing were collected and counted. In total, 886 nymphal ticks were collected. The overall mean in found ticks between both groups differed significantly, with 20.8 more ticks per person on light clothing. All participants had more ticks on light clothing in all periods of exposure. Dark clothing seems to attract fewer ticks.

1 Like

Another cautionary tale. A while back I became friendly with a couple whose black standard poodle puppy was in puppy class with my white standard poodle puppy. Their boy came from a very reputable breeder, he was beautiful and sweet but seemed to have serious behavior issues. He would not respond to commands, seemed distracted and somewhat rambunctious. The owners did not have children, they loved the puppy like a child. A couple months later, I received the terrible news that he had died. He had had undetected Lyme disease. Fyi, this was in New Jersey.

Oh wow, so sad. I will keep an extra eye on the dogs! I’ve been reading it is a really horrid disease.

I love our tick tool as you just slide it under the tick and twist and it pops out. I was always worried about tweezers that the head would come off and leave the legs in as they have quite a tight hold. But maybe there is a good tweezer technique.

Also just learnt this:

Does Lyme disease come from deer?

Image result for does lyme disease come from deer or rats

Female ticks infected with Lyme disease bacteria do not pass them to their offspring. Deer are important sources of blood for ticks and are important to tick survival and movement to new areas. However, deer are not infected with Lyme disease bacteria and do not infect ticks.

Rodents are the culprits! Just as rodent fleas spread black death/bubonic plague, rodents are the primary transmitters of the bacteria that cause Lyme. The white-footed mouse is the number one transmitter, as tick eggs are often found in their nests and dens.

Deer just spread the ticks that are already infected. Interesting stuff!

1 Like

I also found this:

  • A new study says clothes treated with permethrin makes it hard for ticks to bite.
  • The CDC recommends treating certain articles of clothing with bug spray, or you can purchase items already treated.
1 Like

Ticks are one of the main things I dread when sitting in the UK over summer. Unlike Carla, I have had difficulty removing the ticks with the little gadget because the ticks were small and hard to get the prong part under them. As well as this I have a tremor in my dominant hand. I always ask if the pets (both dogs and cats) take preventative measures against ticks in case I can’t remove them. I would have no hesitation in getting the vet to remove them too.
Although we have ticks in Australia, I tend not to sit in those areas where they are usually found, so do not have much experience with removing them. I do a lot of praying! :laughing:


I live in Maine and we used to keep ticks down by burning the fields each year. Now it’s considered environmentally unfriendly. My son, my dog, several friends, and I have all bee treated for both Lyme and Anaplasmosis. Seems to me these, and the other tick borne diseases are a bigger hazard.

In addition, much of the farmland has disappeared. I’ve seen many well-meaning people move into Maine who want to “save the trees” (trust me, trees will move into any unkept field within no time at all), providing even better tick habitat. Last year I was picking 30-40 ticks A DAY off my Sheltie. This year I’m building a fence around my property and eschewing walks in the fields and forest.

I don’t want to give my dog chemicals, and Wondercide doesn’t seem to work well, so this year I’ll probably end up giving him whatever my homeopathic vet deems the least harmful. In the meantime, I feed garlic, spray Wondercide on the dog and my clothing whenever we go out, Unfortunately, ticks are a fact of life in the Northeast USA and, really, all over the USA. And from what I’ve read Lyme is all over the world, so if your doctor says “not here”, find another doc.

@temba , thanks for bringing this to my attention. I will pack my tick removal tools in my bag when I cross the pond next month.

If you think you may have been bitten by a Lyme tick, take quick action:

In areas that are highly endemic for Lyme disease, a single prophylactic dose of doxycycline (200 mg for adults or 4.4 mg/kg for children of any age weighing less than 45 kg) may be used to reduce the risk of acquiring Lyme disease after a high-risk tick bite.

I went to urgent care when I suspected it and got a script for Doxy 200 mg right away.

1 Like

I live outside Cleveland, Ohio, USA and we walk our dogs every day through the fields and woods. It is important to know what type of tick you see on your dog or you and what is in your area. We haven’t seen any black legged ticks (Lyme disease), only American Dog ticks (in our area they carry no disease). Our record day was 11 on one dog after an hour walk. I take my time after a walk to look and feel my black lab for the ticks - usually find 1-2. Yes they sometimes get on us. We found that wearing rubber boots really helps, so we wear them from April to the beginning of July. If you are wearing shoes, undo the laces and check. Also check between the shoe and your socks. When we find a tick on us, no big deal. It is just pull off, looked at to confirm the type is not the black legged type and then dropped in a little jar of alcohol we keep. Know what type of tick is in your area - you can check with the local health department and be very committed to checking you and your dog if there are disease carrying ticks.


Thanks, @Angela-HeadOfCommunity! That video taught me something I’d missed: Ticks take over 24 hours to transmit Lyme disease! That makes a big difference.

A CDC tick site:

  • That has an example of removing a tick via tweezers (from the side, not grasping from the top).
  • It also has a “tick bite bot,” which sounds like a chatbot you can ask about your tick bite, and it’ll give you recommendations based on the chat

More from the CDC:

  • In most cases, a tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more before the Lyme disease bacterium can be transmitted. If you remove a tick quickly (within 24 hours), you can greatly reduce your chances of getting Lyme disease.

This site was also helpful: UpToDate

And thank you to everyone for their experiences and advice! I feel much better, as I write this indoors. :sweat_smile:

@BJH: How do you remove your ticks? Would you ever pull one off by hand? I like that you drop it in alcohol to preserve it just in case.

1 Like