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Veterinarian says longhorned tick found in Putnam County

A local veterinarian says this rare tick species - the longhorned tick - has been found on a dog in Putnam County. (New Jersey Department of Agriculture)

An invasive species is making its way across the United States.

For the first time in West Virginia, the longhorned tick has been found on an animal in the area.

Dr. Jennifer Snider, a veterinarian, said eight longhorned ticks were found on a dog in Putnam County.

Snider said the tick is spreading very quickly and is affecting livestock production because it attacks in massive numbers.

Snider said the tick is asexual, meaning it can clone itself.

"Rather than going for a walk in the woods and finding one or two ticks on your pet, they could come back and have dozens of ticks,” she said. “So it is a significant risk to the health of our pets and also to our livestock production."

Snider said the best protection you can take is to get your pet on a good flea and tick control.

"The best thing that I can recommend is don't wait until you have a problem,” Snider said. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Get your pet on a regular, good quality flea and tick control and use it religiously."

The longhorned tick has been found in three other states besides West Virginia, including New Jersey, Virginia and Arkansas.

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