It’s tick season in Georgia. We give the dogs and cats flea and tick treatments, but they still get them. Here’s one on Zeke’s inner leg. I think this is an American dog tick, which is common in the eastern US and in much of California.
This one is sleeping in the septic tank right now.
I have picked several off Zeke in the last month or so and two or three off myself. Leah has found some on herself, too. The flea and tick treatment is supposed to kill them after they bite, but so far I have found only live ticks. One night a few weeks ago I felt a little tickle on my back after I went to bed. I jumped up (memories of lying on a scorpion) and threw the covers back, but I didn’t see anything. I was pretty sure it was a tick, though. I went back to bed and waited. After a few minutes I felt a tickle (a tickle is not necessarily a small tick, although in this case it was) again, and this time I grabbed it.
When I was a graduate student in Atlanta I lived near Northside Drive, which at some points in the city is highway 41 (rolling down which I was not born in the back seat of a Greyhound bus). Almost every afternoon when I came home from school, I would take my dog Jesse a couple of blocks away to a vacant, weed-covered area where she chased rabbits and imaginary creatures for about an hour. In the summer, when we came back home I would fill a glass with hot water with a little detergent, and we would sit in the driveway while I picked ticks off of her. I would put them into the water, where they would sink slowly to the bottom of the glass and die. Detergent is a surfactant, or wetting agent, which prevents the ticks from floating on the surface.
From what I have read, this is not supposed to be a particularly bad tick season, but one tick is too many.