A Plague of Ticks in Our House!

Donna has a strong reaction to ticks; in fact she goes bonkers! OTOH, they seem to find her attractive! The only tick I have had to remove from anyone in the family was on her ear. That was a trauma for her and training for me! That was years ago in a county far, far away.

We haven’t had much problems up here until now. Normally our cold winters kill most of them off and I was speculating that the last few warmer ones was allowing them to proliferate.

Actually, we have only seen them two places in the house: on the dog bed we put in the living room while Lily is recuperating and the love seat which the cats use as their bed when a human isn’t watching TV. None of the ticks have been attached, just wandering around on one animal or another: on Lily and Donna. Donna bought some cedar oil and drenched the love seat and dog bed to control them. The stuff is safer than insecticide.

Until last night. Donna and Stubbs were on the loveseat watching TV when Donna exclaimed, “There is something on Stubbs tail!”. And showed me the “flea” she had caught. Since I could see the thing between her fingers, I knew it had to be a small tick. She couldn’t get to the kitchen sink fast enough! She kept grooming Stubbs and eventually got six small ticks from around his tail. She learned they are slick when she got “greedy” and tried to catch two of them at once. She dropped one which crawled off and hid!

After thinking about it, this made sense; Stubbs refuses to use a litterbox and goes out in the yard to potty. Under the bird feeder tree since it has been snowy.

He digs a small hole in the tree litter then sits on it to do his business. While he is sitting there, ticks follow his heat and crawl on him when he does his evening constitutional. Then hold on to his fur for a ride into the house.

Only the birds and deer visit this tree. And birds are too fastidious to allow ticks to hang on them, especially since they are edible! So I am suspecting the deer are bringing them in and they drop off. Especially since sometimes the deer rest under it.

Even while I was taking a picture of the tree today, I had a watcher.

He wasn’t intimidated by my taking pictures! Handsome guy. But I didn’t think he would let me check him for ticks!

Anyway this is my theory for the source of our ticks. Unfortunately I am unsure what to do other than vigilance and cedar oil!