Tick Checks 101

Whether you’re playing ball in the backyard, going for a hike along a forest trail or taking the dog to a local park, it’s important to take the proper tick precautions before you head outside as well as after you return home. While prevention techniques such as applying insect repellent and wearing long clothes can help keep ticks off, a thorough tick check after spending time outdoors is the most surefire way to stay tick-free.

Check Your Clothes

Although wearing long-sleeve shirts and long pants can help keep ticks off of your skin, these pests can still grab hold of your clothing and latch on. Carefully inspect clothing items including your pants, socks and shoes, as well as any belongings like backpacks. If you discover a tick, remove it from the clothing and wash with hot water. Additionally, putting clothes in a dryer on high heat for a few minutes can kill any ticks that may be hiding.


Upon returning from outdoor areas like the park, woods or even your own yard, inspect your body for ticks, using a mirror as necessary. If they’re able to latch on, ticks will try to find a warm, moist area of the body to attach and start feeding. Here are some of the most common places ticks can hide once they’ve latched onto your body that should be checked:

  • Back of the knees
  • Along the inside of the legs
  • Around the waist
  • Under the arms and in arm pits
  • Behind the ears
  • In and around head hair

Check Your Pets

Once you’ve checked yourself, do the same for any pets that spent time outdoors by feeling for any small bumps within their fur and along their body. Here are some of the most common places that ticks can hide on pets:

  • Around the ears
  • Underneath the collar
  • Along the legs and in between the toes
  • In and around the tail

If you do discover a tick on your body or a pet, follow these steps to safely and properly remove it.

Watch how ticks can latch onto clothing and quickly crawl along our skin.