American Dog Tick
This hard tick has a western distribution on the Pacific Coast and an extensive eastern distribution that extends from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, west into Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado. Recent records have been collected from both humans and dogs with no recent travel history in Alaska, raising concern about establishment of this tick in this previously non indigenous area. The highest risk of being bitten occurs during the spring and summer months. This species is a vector of the agents of Rocky Mountain spotted fever, human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA), human monocytic ehrlichiosis (HME), and Tularemia. It has also been responsible for causing tick paralysis in some hosts. Hosts of this species are medium-sized and large mammals for adults, while immature stages usually feed on rodents. Adult females are most likely to bite humans. It is a common human biter.
Visit University of Rhode Island’s TickEncounter Resource Center for additional photos to help in the identification of ticks.