Scientists say cases of Lyme disease carried by some ticks are on the rise in Canada.
While the most common Lyme disease carrying species — black legged ticks — are more often found in eastern provinces, experts say the effects of climate change mean substantially more ticks are found each year in Saskatchewan.
Owner of Churchill Dog Groomers in Saskatoon Jovi Wagner said she’s already done a fair number of tick removals, despite cooler spring temperatures.
“This time of year we see the majority of them on farm dogs but the city dogs are starting to get them,” she said. “A friend of mine just pulled 15 ticks off her dog after a 10-minute walk.”
Wagner recommends looking for a preventative medication and checking your pet after each walk.
“There’s always a risk when your dog has them,” she said. “They can transfer to humans. You just have to watch and make sure you check yourself over.”
Anyone who finds a tick this year during their outdoor adventures can take a photo and upload it to an online database.
“Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan will identify the tick species,” Voordouw said. “At the same time you’ll get information about the risk of tick-borne diseases.”
The data will give researchers a better scope of the issue in different areas of the province and perhaps give you a little peace of mind on your next camping trip.