Brown Dog Ticks

Rhipicephalus sanguineus
Pest Stats
Color: Reddish brown, gray-blue when engorged
Legs: Larvae have 6 legs, nymphs and adults have 8 legs
Shape: Oval, flattened
Size: 1/8” (3 mm) unengorged; 1/2” (12 mm) engorged
Antennae: No
Region: Found throughout the U.S.

The brown dog tick is named for its color and because it is found on domestic dogs. Although it is unusual for a brown dog tick to bite humans, it will do so in the absence of a canine host.



Habits

Brown dog ticks prefer dogs as hosts. They typically attach to the ears or between the toes and do not travel very far after dropping off a host. They are unique because they can complete their entire life cycle indoors.



Habitat

This tick survives best indoors and prefers warm, dry conditions.



Threats

Brown dog ticks rarely attack humans, but they can transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever and several other tick-borne diseases to dogs including canine ehrlichiosis and canine babesia.