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Tick situation getting serious

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Even in the winter time, if you get a nice enough stretch of days, you could have a real problem- ticks. Oh, yes they do come out 12 months of the year; and they can be a real problem for you and your pet.

They may make your skin crawl just thinking about them, but that is not the worst issue with ticks- they cause lyme disease, which can be devastating to both humans and pets.

(dr. mike fleming/cross veterinary, grand blanc) [Notes:super :41 to :49]

"And there's a lot of other diseases that people are not aware of, that you can get from ticks too. They're not huge around here now, but every year, I see more and more ticks," says Dr. Mike Fleming, of Cross Veterinary in Grand Blanc, says the leading experts are warning about a dangerous rise in tick activitiy in Michigan.

In fact, he says, this year, ticks will be a bigger issue than ever, in some parts of the state, "There is a clinic in Battle Creek, michgian, where they diagnosed 24 cases of Lyme disease last year, which was unheard of in Michigan four or five years ago."

And the tick problem is expected to spread, Fleming says, "Within a few years, our whole state will be just covered with ticks."

On the up side, Fleming says, there are now more, and better options for keeping ticks away from our pets, "There is a new product out, that we're actually going to start to carry called Simparica, and it's the best flea and tick prevention on the market, currently."

One warning, even if you do use tick prevention products, Fleming says there is no guarantee your pet will be 100-percent safe, "There's tons and tons of species of ticks and there isn't a preventative that's been labled for prevention of all species of ticks."

Dr. Fleming says, on top of using flea and tick preventive products, you should not only check your pets, but your kids and the rest of the famkily, after spending any time outdoors, "Of diagnosed cases of lyme's disease in people last year, they think it is several times more than what is reported because it is kind of a hard disease to diagnose. And it's going to get worse and worse and worse, too. People need to become more aware of ticks on themselves, along with being aware of ticks on their animals."

You should also know, there is a Lyme disease vaccine for pets. Make sure you your veterinarian about it.

I get creeped out even looking at our thinking about ticks coming around. If you really think about it, for just a few bucks a month, you can help keep your pet protected.

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