The Dog Ate my Blog Post

I had an Amazing Biology post half-formed earlier this morning when I had occasion to walk past the dog-queen on her love-seat throne.

There were two tiny new beauty marks, one above each eye.  And as I leaned towards her for closer inspection (this, being her fourth birthday by the way, and more about that another day perhaps) two more similar dots appeared near her left ear.

All together, I collected *10 very tiny larval deer ticks from either the dog or the cover on her throne. And I swear just as I typed the period of that last sentence, I felt a tiny tickle over what used to be my left anterior deltoid muscle and guess what?

So too bad there’s not a Frontline for people. And that the dog has been treated thusly (against a lot of personal resistance to poisoning my dog for a hygenic purpose) means ticks that would latch onto her are more prone to detach from her toxic self and look for a non-lethal meal. Like me.

It was 38 degrees here this morning when Gandy brought home her miniature zoo. So just be aware that, at least in some parts of Floyd County, it is the PEAK of tick season and cold is no deterrent.

*Make that 11.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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