The state veterinarian is warning livestock and pet owners about an aggressive tick responsible for the death of five cows in Surry County.
More than 1,000 Asian longhorned ticks were on the body of one dead young bull brought to the Northwestern Animal Disease Diagnostic Lab.
These ticks are known for building intense infestations in animals.
"A thousand ticks on an animal is just absolutely terrifying to me and it makes me sick you know to think that it suffered like that," said Dr. Brent Scarlett, a veterinarian based in Randolph County.
Scarlett says ticks are very small and latch on to places that are easy to miss. That's why it's important to check your pets and livestock often.
"The ticks like to congregate around softer skin. That's going to be up in their armpits, around their ears, around their muzzle, right under their tails is some nice soft skin they can attach to," Scarlett said.
Other easy steps you can take to protect your animals include keeping your grass cut short, investing in fly tags or de-worming paste.