The serious threat tick bites can bring, and the need to inform the public on ways to repel ticks, has actually persuaded Gov. Donald Carcieri of Rhode Island to proclaim June 3 Tick Control Awareness Day. Thomas Mather, a professor of entomology and the director of the Center for Vector-Borne Disease at the University of Rhode Island has completed extensive research on the subject of tick bites. Ways to deter tick bites was so greatly needed that state involvement was warranted.
‘”With Lyme Disease becoming an ever-increasing hazard in Rhode Island, I felt that it was critical that the governor do something to raise the public’s awareness,” said Mather, who is also the coordinator for Tick Control Awareness Day. “There is already a great awareness about the disease but, until now, there has been no coordinated effort to educate people about how to control ticks and prevent tick bites.”‘
So what repellent was determined to work best to deter ticks?
‘For personal protection, Mather suggests daily tick checks. He also suggests the use of permethrin, a tick repellent on-clothing spray.
“Sure you can put DEET on your skin and that should help, but what we found works best is when it is combined with permethrin, a spray for your clothes,” Mather said. “When combined together, these two products are proven to be much more effective.”‘
Your pets are also susceptible to tick bites. Tick repellents for pets are suggested for them.
‘When it comes to family pets, there are topical solutions and vaccines that are most widely used to protect them from Lyme, Mather said.
“Cats do not tend to be as susceptible to Lyme as dogs and, because of the thickness of their fur, ticks have a tendency to walk outside of their fur rather than burrow in,” Mather said. “Because of this, cats tend to be carriers more than anything and people need to be especially careful for themselves if they have a cat that goes in and outside.”‘
It seems a combination of DEET and permethrin are this experts suggestions to deter tick bites.