How do ticks find their host?
Ticks find their hosts by detecting an animals breath and body odors or by sensing body heat, moisture and vibrations. Some species can even recognize a shadow. In addition, tick pick a place to wait by identifying well-used paths. Resting on the tips of grasses and shrubs they wait for a host. Ticks can't fly or jump, but many tick species wait in position known as "questing". While questing, tick hold onto leaves and grass by their third and fourth pair of legs. They hold their first pair of legs outstretched, waiting to climb onto their host. When the host brushes the spot where a tick is waiting, it quickly climbs aboard onto the host. Some ticks with attach quickly and others will wander, looking for places like the ear or other areas where the skin in thinner.
If you find a tick attached to your skin or your pets, there is no need to panic. There are tick removal devices on the market, but a plain set of tweezers will also do. Fine tip tweezers work best.
1. Use fin-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skins surface as possible.
2. Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Don't twist or jerk. Notice by the photo to grab gently at the base where the head is buried, and not the middle of the body. Twisting or jerking can cause mouth parts to break off. If you are unable to remove the mouth easily with clean tweezers, leave it alone and let the skin heal.
3. After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol, or soap and water.
4. Dispose of the live tick by submersing it in rubbing alcohol, placing it in a sealed container or zip lock bag, wrapping it tightly in tape, or flush it down the toilet. Never crush a tick with your fingers.
If you are suspicious, or unsure you can bring it to your veterinarian, where they can determine the species,