Home & Garden

Wet Summer Boosts Flea and Tick Populations

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fleas-and-ticks-againAside from whatever other pains this wet summer has caused you, add fleas and ticks to the list.

According to a news release from Arrow Exterminators, the recent wet weather across the region – coupled with summer”s high temperatures – has caused a surge in flea and tick infestations.

The insects reproduce quickly and may pose health risks to humans and pets.

Here are five quick steps to help you prevent infestations:

1. Keep outdoor play areas and lawns groomed and clear of brush, grass clippings, woodpiles and leaf debris.# These are ideal havens for rodents such as mice and rats which are renowned carriers of fleas and ticks.

2. Bathe and groom pets often and visit a veterinarian for professional flea and tick treatments.# Also, inspect them regularly, especially the front shoulders, back and ears.# Fleas are notorious hitchhikers and with the ability to jump more than 200 times their body length, it is extremely easy for them to catch a ride on a pet and into a home.

3. Vacuum frequently.# This will help remove fleas and prevent the laying of eggs.# “It”s important to remember that fleas are not only fantastic hitchhikers, but also professional escape artists. After vacuuming, immediately dispose of the bag,”# said Shay Runion, Arrow Pest Expert.

4. When outside, in areas where ticks are common, it”s important to dress properly.# Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants and if possible, wear clothing light in color so ticks are easier to detect. Also, use a tick repellant containing DEET or Permethrin and when returning indoors, inspect clothing and skin thoroughly for ticks, especially the head and behind the ears.

5. If a flea or tick infestation is suspected, a pest professional should be contacted immediately to eradicate the problem.