Mosquito and Tick Prevention Critical for Outdoor Spaces

READING, Pa., May 4, 2015 - Mosquitoes and ticks are increasingly finding their way into the landscape of suburban areas across the U.S. and becoming a potential health threat to people and their beloved animals. One explanation of this has been the expansion of suburbia into the edge of wooded habitats, an environment where mosquitoes and ticks thrive.  It is important to be aware of the seriousness of these harmful pests as they are capable of passing life-threatening diseases like West Nile virus, Lyme disease and more to both humans and pets.

Because dogs and cats typically encounter more ticks than people do, Ehrlich Pest Control advises homeowners to take strong preventative measures.  Creating a “mosquito and tick safe zone” from April through September will protect outdoor areas frequented by people and their pets from these menacing pests.  As part of its educational efforts for homeowners, Ehrlich is working with leading veterinary experts to focus on the impact of these pests on man’s best friends.

“In addition to vaccinations against Lyme disease-causing bacteria, there are tick prevention products that we can apply to domestic animals regularly to reduce the chance of tick bites and associated diseases,” said Dr. Nancy Soares, VMD, founder and owner of Pa.-based Macungie Animal Hospital. “Coupling these options with applying a pet-friendly barrier around the yard to reduce the chances of a tick-encounter will provide an important dual protection, allowing our pets to enjoy the outdoors more safely.”

Ehrlich offers a Mosquito and Tick Solution that is safe for use around children and pets and focuses on treating the vegetation where mosquitoes are likely to rest and ticks generally live. While many solutions address mosquitoes in their juvenile stage, this program targets the blood-feeding adults that pose the greater health risk. The treatment kills mosquitoes and ticks on contact, and creates a month-long barrier to prevent new ones from entering the treated area.  Consumers can choose between both natural and conventional long-term programs to deliver the best treatment for an individual home or business.

Along with an effective barrier treatment regimen, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) provides the following tips for creating a mosquito and tick safe zone in the outdoor areas around home or work:

  • Turn over objects that can collect water.
  • Clear tall grasses and brush around homes and at the edge of lawns.
  • Place a 3-ft wide barrier of wood chips or gravel between lawns and wooded areas to restrict tick migration into recreational areas.
  • Keep grass mowed short.
  • Move woodpiles and other items attractive to rodent hosts.
  • Keep playground equipment, decks, and patios away from yard edges and trees.
  • Discourage unwelcome animals (such as deer, raccoons, and stray dogs) from entering your yard by constructing fences.

“Mosquitoes and ticks need to be taken seriously because they can transmit an array of disease-causing pathogens to both humans and pets—and disease transmission may happen more commonly than people think,” said Nancy Troyano, PhD, BCE, director of education and training/entomologist for Ehrlich. “Mosquitoes are responsible for spreading West Nile virus to humans, as well as heartworm to dogs and cats. The risk of an outbreak for either is largely unpredictable due to factors such as infected mosquitoes traveling to previously uninfected areas.”  

Reports show that cases of tick-transmitted illnesses are on the rise, with Lyme disease becoming particularly widespread.  Each year, studies indicate there are about 25,000 reported cases of Lyme disease in humans, and at least 1 out of 15 dogs test positive for Lyme disease in endemic areas.

About Rentokil North America
Rentokil North America is part of Rentokil Initial plc, one of the world’s largest and most diverse business service companies, operating in more than 50 countries worldwide. Ehrlich Pest Control (www.jcehrlich.com), Western Exterminator (www.westernexterminator.com), and Presto-X Pest Control (www.prestox.com) are all part of the Rentokil family of pest control companies in North America. They provide commercial and residential pest control, bioremediation, bird control, vegetation management, deer repellent services, wild-animal trapping and termite control from more than 200 local offices in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.