YAKIMA, Wash. -- Whether you are hiking up Mount Rainier or camping in the woods this season, it is important to protect yourself from ticks.
One thing you can do is use tick repellent that contains DEET. For your pets, there are commercially available products that are safe to use.
If you are going into heavily wooded areas, wear long sleeves and pants even if it's hot. As you leave the woods, use the buddy system to check your friends for ticks. The key areas to check are: in hair, around the ears, under the arm, and behind the knee.
If you find a tick, remove it with tweezers and try not to crush the body.
"Try to save it in isopropyl alcohol", says Laura Kramer, an Environmental Health Expert with the Yakima County Health District. "If you develop any flu-like symptoms about a month later, you have that to help the doctor diagnose what you may have been exposed to".
In Washington, there is an average of 15 cases of lyme disease due to tick bites each year.