Pet owners in Morinville have been calling the local vet in recent weeks, worried about dogs with red circles on their stomachs.

“We see them every year, in May, the beginning of June,” said Lucia Vits, veterinarian at the Morinville Veterinary Clinic.

“It looks a little bit like a mosquito bite in humans you know, with redness around it. A circle with the bite, you can see the red mark and then a second circle, a bigger one around it.”

She said the bite is usually from a gnat or similar flying insect.

“Some dogs don’t even feel it, some dogs get itchy and they try to scratch themselves, but most of the dogs don’t react to it,” Vits said.

Dogs who spend a lot of time lying out in the grass are typically the ones who get bit.

Vits said the clinic saw an increase in calls over the May long weekend.

“That weekend they got at least ten calls per day.”

She said it’s hard to say if this year is worse than previous years.

Tick season also underway 

The other type of bite dog owners need to watch for is from ticks.

“Ticks don’t really like it too hot so we normally see them more in the spring and in the fall,” said Vits.

“We see them more with long grass and bushes, so if people are planning to go camping or they go to the parks where there is long grass and everything, yes we will recommend to have some type of protection for the ticks.”

Ticks can carry several diseases including Lyme.

“Every year we see more and more so it’s important to have something to protect them,”Vits said.