Dog ticks a growing concern in Alaska

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by Your Alaska Link News Team

Many people think ticks can't live in Alaska but a state veterinarian says that's not the case.

Some ticks, such as hare ticks, have always survived in the state, but non-native dog ticks have also been found in Alaska, raising concerns for dogs, wildlife and the risk of spreading diseases to people.

Kimberlee Beckmen of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Fairbanks told the reports say ticks on small mammals like snowshoe hares, squirrels and birds are endemic to the state.

In the past three years, Beckmen also has found at least two types of non-native dog ticks surviving in Alaska.

Ticks carry diseases, such as Lyme disease, that can be transmitted to people. Dog ticks also pose a risk to moose and other wildlife.