Uptick of ticks, poison oak plagues dogs, humans alike in Marin

FAIRFAX, Calif. (KGO) -- Everybody loves water -- birds, bees, boaters, and even pests. We're talking about an uptick of ticks in the Bay Area.

At the Fairfax Veterinary Clinic, they call this the 'tick tube'.

Dr. Kelly Pipkin holds up a device she refers to as the 'tick tube' in Fairfax, Calif. on Wednesday, April 12, 2017.

Dr. Kelly Pipkin and the rest of her staff use it as a temporary graveyard. "Actually, most of these were removed in the past week."

There are many more pests to come based on spring rains and the booming of blooming in Marin County parks and open spaces -- especially for a dog lover like Liz Jones, who found yet another black dot on her pal Manx after their walk Wednesday.

Chances are that it does not carry Lyme Disease. In Marin County, only 2 percent do, and the county health finds that number holding so far this year.

But with wet weather, "The insect population responds and there may be an increase in the population, for example," said Marin County Health Inspector Dr. Matt Willis.

Back at the Fairfax clinic, Pipkin notes a marked increase in ticks, which could cause Lyme Disease in your dog, or a fever, or worse. "Worst case, kidney failure," she said.

Poison oak is proliferating. Retired emergency room physician Jeff Kraut told ABC7 News not only people need to stay out of this stuff -- dogs too.

Jones' dog Manx caught ticks on a leash and gave them to her.

Jones is a tick and poison oak victim -- demographically perfect for this story. "Glad I met the criteria," she lauged.

Many of us will deal with these issues by the end of the Spring season.

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