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An image of a single Brown Dog Tick sitting on a leaf.

The Brown Dog Tick: What You Need To Know

The Brown Dog Tick is a species of tick that is very common throughout the U.S. and other parts of the world. However, it is most common in warm areas like metropolitan-Phoenix. Unlike other species of ticks, the Brown Dog Tick can spend its entire life cycle indoors. Once they get into your home, they’re not likely to leave without the intervention of a professional. In the meantime, they will breed rapidly and infest your home. They can live up to a year-and-a-half without a meal, and they’re more than happy to feast on your blood before that happens. Though they prefer to feed on dogs, they have no problem resorting to humans whenever necessary (or convenient).

How can I spot the Brown Dog Tick?

The Brown Dog Tick is a small arachnid that is reddish-brown in color and commonly found on domestic dogs.

Is the Brown Dog Tick poisonous?

The Brown Dog Tick is not venomous, but it can carry a disease called Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Ticks are capable of transmitting this disease to humans.

Here is an excellent video about the Brown Dog Tick. (It was made for Florida residents, but the main facts still apply.)

What is Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever?

Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever is a bacterial disease that causes a variety of flu-like symptoms. (Most commonly the symptoms are fever, aches, and vomiting.) A rash may accompany these symptoms as well. It is treatable, but must be treated quickly or it can rapidly progress in severity and may even become fatal. Consult a medical professional immediately if you suspect you may have contracted it! (Check out this article from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information.)

An image of a hand with a rash from Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, caught from a Brown Dog Tick

A hand infected with Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever from a Brown Dog Tick.

How can I get rid of dog ticks?

An ounce of prevention is worth 100 pounds of cure when it comes to ticks. A single female tick can lay up to 4000 eggs at a time, so you can go from one tick to an infestation in your home in no time. You might find these eggs on the tops of dog kennels, on window ledges, and in cracks and crevices throughout your home. The eggs usually hatch after between 2 and 5 weeks, and then the reproduction cycle begins again with thousands more ticks. Once they take over, it can take multiple rounds of professional-grade pesticide to get rid of them all. We recommend keeping your dog(s) bathed and well groomed, and exercising care with where you take them outdoors. If you spot a tick in your house, give us a call right away so that we can help stop the problem before it gets out of hand!