This 2005 image depicted a male brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus from a superior, or dorsal view looking down on this hard tick’s scutum, or keratinized shield, which covered its entire back. However, in the female (PHIL 7641), the dorsal abdomen is only partially covered by the scutum, thereby, offering room for abdominal expansion during the ingesting her blood meal.
Though not the primary vector for Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) like the American dog tick, Dermacentor variabilis, and the Rocky Mountain wood tick, D. andersoni, R. sanguineus has been found to be a less-common vector as well. This tick is distributed throughout the world, and is known to transmit diseases to animals, including canine babesiosis, bovine anaplasmosis, East Coast fever and Texas cattle fever. It can also spread tularemia, and tick-borne typhus to human beings.