Tick numbers are on the rise across New England this spring, raising the prospect of an increase in Lyme and other diseases associated with the blood suckers.
The region got a respite last year as the drought took a toll on ticks, whose numbers drop as the humidity falls below 85 percent. But the drought is largely gone from the region and ticks are taking advantage.
Tick numbers and the diseases they spread have been on the rise for some time.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of Lyme disease cases has tripled to about 30,000 cases nationwide each year. Cases of anaplasmosis, which can cause fever, headache, chills and muscle aches, have also risen steadily.
Especially for our state, the Connecticut Agricultural Experimental Station said they are seeing more ticks this year, especially dog ticks which are also known as wood ticks.
They believe it's due to the mild winter season.
“I think due to the long winter and the fact that we are getting rid of all these forests, now they are all coming in our backyards so that's a problem,” said Susan Miano of Rocky Hill.
But people are taking precautions especially when it comes to their pets. Pets are prone to get lyme disease too.
There are tick collars and topicals for cats and dogs, and there are now chewables that protect them from fleas and ticks.
Along with wearing long pants and sleeves while outdoors, using tick spray is common. Many have even gone as far as spraying their lawns, either doing it themselves or hiring a professional.
For adults and pets, make sure to do tick checks, looking to see if they're on your body.
If you don't know what to use on your pet, it's best to talk to your veterinarian.
Copyright 2017 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.