Ticks are a member of the arachnid family, making them a relative to fellow Arizona pests such as spiders and scorpions. The difference between ticks and their relatives is that ticks are incredibly adaptive and can reach places that other pests cannot. Ticks can enter a home through minuscule cracks and will embed themselves into the pores of the building. They can crawl through crevices in stucco finishing or spaces between home sidings. They will then utilize these small spaces to breed.
Though there are quite a few types of ticks, the species that frequent Arizona is the brown dog tick. The brown dog tick can lay anywhere from 250 all the way up to 5,000 eggs at a time. This lightning-fast reproduction process makes a tick infestation very difficult to control if you do not call in a tick control expert.
An adult brown dog tick is reddish-brown in coloring and lacks any easily noticeable markings that are found on many other tick species. Males are slightly smaller than females, measuring at 1/8-inch long and ½-inch long, respectively. Brown dog ticks are dangerous because they can complete their entire life cycle indoors.
To begin an infestation, a tick will first jump onto a dog to feed. Once it has had its fill, it will jump off and crawl into the nearest crack or crevice it can find. Again, ticks can thrive in incredibly small environments, so this process is not difficult for them. Unique to most pests, once a tick has fed and relocated, it will molt.
When a tick molts, it sheds its current shell and grows larger. Then, it will re-emerge to feed again before returning back to its crevice to molt once more. This process of feeding and molting repeats several times until it reaches the stage of its life when it can reproduce. It is then when hundreds of tick eggs are laid, and an infestation truly begins.
Ticks are known for carrying diseases, and the brown dog tick, in particular, carries Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Tularemia, and other diseases, from animals to people. Luckily, ticks found in the Phoenix metro area typically do not carry Lyme disease. However, bringing your pet camping in areas like northern Arizona does make them vulnerable to deer or mice ticks, which can spell danger for your metro area.
At Insectek, we want to keep both you and your pet safe from ticks. The first step in tick prevention is to routinely inspect your dog and other pets for evidence of pest activity. You can follow other safety measures, such as:
Ticks are some of the most persistent pests, and have a habit of returning once they’ve already fed upon your dog. To keep your furry friends and your loved ones safe, we recommend enrolling in a preventive program, such as the Insectek 365 Pest Prevention Program. With the 365 Program, a tick control specialist will return to your home on a monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly basis, depending on what you choose.
Our pest control specialists will only apply EPA-approved or organic products to your home, meaning that while we are tough on the ticks that are plaguing your family and pets, our products will not harm you or you loved ones. We will treat both the interior and exterior of the home, to assure that each nook and cranny is clear of tick activity.