Illinois seeing Lyme disease cases grow

Illinois seeing Lyme disease cases grow

When you own a pet, you know how important it is to maintain flea and tick control in order to keep your animal healthy. However, there's more than just cat and dog wellness at risk when it comes to parasites and infestations. Much of the bacteria that insects harbor can negatively impact humans as well as their pets. Lyme disease is one of the most common ailments associated with ticks, and more cases are being discovered each day.

In Illinois, the condition is becoming a serious problem, according to the Chicago Tribune. Over the past year, the state has seen a record number of Lyme disease cases. In 2012, there were about 200 instances of the ailment across the state. Lori Brunk, a resident of Lake Villa, is one local who knows what it's like to live with Lyme disease. Before she was diagnosed, she dealt with memory loss and chronic pain.

"Unfortunately, it kind of puts a stop on your life and any plans you had," Brunk told the news source. "This little bug can change your life for a long time."

In Lake County, Ill., the first tick with the Lyme disease bacterium was discovered in 2006. Since then, it's estimated that about 40 percent of ticks in the area carry the bacteria. For this reason, residents need to remain on high alert when it comes to maintaining their health, as well as the well-being of their pets.

Lyme disease and its symptoms
As the Mayo Clinic stated, Lyme disease can begin to show itself in the form of a red rash in the shape of a bull's eye on the skin. It can later progress into fatigue and neurological problems if it's left untreated. Luckily, there are a few ways pet owners can keep ticks away from their households and animals.

Products such as the Hartz® UltraGuard Plus® Flea & Tick Collar for Cats and Kittens can keep fleas, ticks and mosquitoes away from cats for up to seven months. Similar collars are available for dogs, and topical drops can provide the same results for a maximum of 30 days. By taking these precautionary measures, pet owners can reduce the chances of developing a tick-borne illness.

This content is provided by the flea prevention experts at Hartz. From flea drops to flea treatments for the home and yard, we have the solution for you.