Tick season off to early start

Posted at 5:35 PM, May 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-06 19:39:57-04

Warmer temperatures and extra moisture in the air have tick season off to an early start.

It's something dog owners who frequent the foothills with their four-legged friends might want to keep in mind.

Plus, there are things you can do to help out before you leave the house.

Ticks are tiny, black, and difficult to spot.

They could even go undetected in your own backyard and can pop up during your hike in the Boise foothills.

Dog owners who are used to this Springtime trend take preventative measures.

For example, there is a topical treatment that lasts for several weeks that can be applied to dogs' fur.

"I put the Frontline on her to help get her ready so that she would hopefully not get them," says Staci Mortimer, who aims to go on a hike at least once a week.

Out on a walk with her dog, "Deedee," and "Ferin," whom she's dog sitting, Mortimer's proactive approach doesn't end there.

She also has a routine once they get back home.

"I'll brush her. You can feel for them when you pet them," Mortimer says. "So, you just kind of check areas that you think one [a tick] might be."

Local veterinarians are already seeing dogs with ticks in their office.

Doggy daycares and boarding facilities are also posting information through social media to help educate clients.

At Camp Bow Wow, they inspect all dogs upon arrival. They have the tool necessary to remove ticks if they spot one too.

The sooner ticks are removed, the better, and the less likely a disease will be transmitted.

"They'll attach to your dog, start to suck their blood," says Kourtney Walker, the general manager for Camp Bow Wow. "They'll embed their head inside of the dog and stay their until their bellies are full and then they'll drop off."

Ticks are typically found in bushes and tall grass, especially near water.