Carbon County residents are advised to exercise caution to protect families, pets and livestock from insect-related diseases during the 2004 flea and tick season.
Ticks can carry illnesses that affect animals and humans, including as Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever, point out state health and agriculture officials.
Ticks are found in all regions of the United States. Living in bushes, grasses and woods, the insects attach to the animals and humans coming into contact with the foliage.
Local dog and cat owners who allow animals to run freely through wooded areas in the Castle Valley region are advised to check the animals routinely for ticks.
To check for ticks, residents should run their hands through the coats of the animal and feel for small lumps.
In addition, people should consider keeping a pet's fur or hair cut short so the presence of ticks can be easily detected. Cat and dog owners should also use tick and flea sprays or collars.
Castle Valley residents with horses and livestock are advised to use the standard treatments for grubs and parasites. State officials also advise local livestock producers and horse owners to contact local veterinarians for more information regarding protecting the animals from diseases associated with fleas and ticks.
Carbon County residents who hike in wooded or brushy areas in Castle Valley should wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants to protect against coming into contact with ticks.
The Utah Department of Health indicates that Lyme disease is very rare in the state. The majority of Utahns infected with Lyme disease acquired the illness while traveling outside of the state.
To date, no increase in Rocky Mountain spotted fever or tick-borne diseases have been reported in Utah during 2004.
For additional information about ticks, fleas and diseases associated with the insects, Carbon County residents with Internet access may visit http://health.utah.gov/els/epidemiology/epifacts/rmsf.htmlor http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvbid/lyme/spotlight/.