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Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

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You can get Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) from the bite of an infected tick. In the United States, the American dog tick and the Rocky Mountain wood tick are the main carriers of RMSF bacteria.

The wood tick is found mainly in the Rocky Mountain States, including Montana, Idaho, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and Nevada. The dog tick is found from the Great Plains to the East Coast, in Alaska and Hawaii, and in parts of California. The dog tick is not found in the interior northwest.

American dog tick
American Dog Tick. Credit: CDC
Rocky Mountain wood tick
Rocky Mountain Wood Tick. Credit: CDC

Last Updated December 19, 2011

Last Reviewed January 28, 2011