Nearly one third of dogs were found to be carrying a tick, according to new research.
Bristol University found that 31 percent of dogs checked at random across the UK were carrying a tick.
Urban areas also put pets at higher risk of picking up a tick than rural ones.
Andrew Bucher, chief veterinary officer at MedicAnimal said: “Owners need to be aware that with milder winters and the relaxation of the pet passport rules within the EU, family pets are now no longer required to undergo tick-treatment before returning to the UK, and several species of tick, such as the brown dog tick, can carry diseases not normally found in the UK, such as babesia canis, which affects red blood cells.
“While there are a range of treatment options available, prevention will always be better than a cure, and we would urge pet owners to remain vigilant and regularly check their animals.
“With Lyme disease affecting roughly 3,000 Britons a year, it pays to be careful, and with several species of tick living indoors and able to breed year round, pet owners should look for signs of ticks outside of the regular season.”