There is a tick surge in New Jersey and we all need to be careful. We learned this week that a tick carrying a brain swelling virus has made its way into New Jersey.

Can you imagine taking your dog to a park for the usual routine and come home to find your pooch covered in and bitten by over 200 ticks?

Leon Gurevich and his family took their dog Phoebe to Perrineville Lake Park in Millstone last Saturday. The foursome and their Snorkie that was on a leash only went for a one-mile trek.

Leon Gurevich / Freehold Patch

Gurevich says when they got home he felt "something" on Phoebe. Upon further inspection, he discovered a tick. Gurevich told Freehold Patch that after removing the first tick, he found another and another.

The family believes that the dog was bitten by lone star ticks. These ticks have an aggressively bite. They also carry the ehrlichiosis, a bacterial disease that can cause fever, headache, fatigue and muscle aches in dogs and humans.

Gurevich claims he and his wife pulled anywhere from 150 to 200 ticks off their dog. Poor thing! They added that the ticks weren't just crawling on Phoebe, each had bit the animal. The couple spent 9 straight hours examining every inch of their pet and thought they had gotten them all. They were wrong.

Gurevich says they were awoken by the dog whimpering in the middle of the night. More ticks. The next morning they took Phoebe to their vet who removed even more ticks and took a blood sample to be tested. The family won't know what, if any viruses Phoebe may have contracted due to the tick infestation for another month and a half.

It's worth noting that according to the family the dog had been taking NexGard, a tick and flea repellent.

Please check your pets, and yourself this season!

[source: Freehold Patch]