How to prevent Lyme Disease in pets and children

- Veterinarian Dr. Natalie Marks and Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Patricia DeLamorra, share tips on preventing the spread of Lyme Disease in your children and pets.

"This year is going to be one of the worst tick burdens the country has ever faced," said Dr. Marks.

The northeast is the epicenter of tick disease and it is endemic across the country.

Ticks spread Lyme which is a an inflammatory and debilitating disease caused by bacteria.

"For children, the best way to stop yourself from getting Lyme is to not get bitten by a tick in the first place. When your children come inside, check the ears, behind the ears, area covered by underwear and in the scalp," said Dr. DeLamorra.

"When you are looking for ticks in your dog, you have to part the hair and look very closely and in the ears. Ticks are the size of an apple seed. When they brush onto a pet and attach and engorge they don't get very big," said Dr. Marks.

"If a tick bites and attaches to a dog, it generally stays there, they don't jump from dog to person, but if your dog has been exposed to Lyme disease, then your child could be exposed," said Dr. DeLamorra.

Other tips for pet owners:

Do daily tick checks.

Avoid high-risk areas with your pets.

Use oral flea and tick products that protect from Lyme.

Have your dog vaccinated for Lyme.

Have you pet's blood screened.

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Editor's Note:  In the video (above) from Good Day New York, one of the guests warned that you should  not use a collar that only protects against fleas.  We want to clarify that collars sold by Hartz all protect against both fleas and ticks.  You should talk to your vet if you have any questions about the subject.

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