The blood sucking ticks are feeding earlier in the year and for longer, putting the region’s dogs and their owners at risk.
Tick bites can transmit serious infections, such as Lyme disease,aserious and debilitating illness that can cause long term health problems in dogs and people.
Now, Annan’s veterinary practices are taking action by joining naturalist and TV presenter Chris Packham and the University of Bristol in the Big Tick Project.
The initiative runs through to autumn, tracking the rise of the tick population in the UK and finding out how many carry disease.
Dog owners can take their pets to participating practices, including Firth Vets in Annan and Ark Vet Centre Ltd which has practices in Lockerbie and Annan, for a tick check and advice about innovations in effective tick control.
Any ticks found on dogs will be collected and sent to Bristol University laboratories to help advance the knowledge of tickborne disease, benefiting both veterinary and human medicine.
Paul Armstrong, of Firth Vets, said: “Drug companies are raising awareness of the potential danger which is good.
“Where we previously found them most in the spring and autumn, we are now finding them right through the summer as
well. As well as cats and dogs, there is a danger to humans and we have had one man in this week seeking treatment for a tick.”
To find out more go to www.bigtickproject.co.uk or contact the vets.