Flea Control

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Does your pet have an itch that won't quit?

Fleas and ticks
For their small size, they bring a great deal of discomfort for you and your pet. Besides driving your faithful companion crazy, they pose a danger to pets and people.

Fortunately, you can fight back. Here are some guidelines and recommendations to keep your household safe and happy.

Know what you're up against:

  • What are fleas?

    Watching a flea-bitten pet scratch herself desperately is a heart-wrenching sight. Fleas are a common problem for dogs, cats and people, who can also be bitten. Many dogs are allergic to fleas, as if the bite wasn't bad enough!

    When a flea bites your dog, it injects a small amount of saliva into the skin to prevent blood coagulation. Some animals may have fleas without showing discomfort, but an unfortunate number of dogs become irritated to this saliva. In highly allergic animals, the bite of a single flea can cause severe itching and scratching. Fleas cause the most common skin disease of dogs, which is called Flea Allergy Dermatitis.
  • What are ticks?

    Ticks are in need of a blood meal, they seek out prey by heat sensors. When a warm object passes by them, they attach themselves by clinging to clothing or fur or falling from trees onto the object and insert pincher-like mouthparts into the skin and begin feeding. These mouthparts are locked in place and will only loosen when the tick has completed the meal. Once the meal is complete, the adult female falls from the prey and hides. The female dies after she lays her eggs.

    Ticks are more likely to target dogs. If you live in an area populated with ticks you should keep a sharp eye on these parasites. They can transmit serious diseases (such as rickettsial diseases like Rocky Mountain spotted fever and ehrlichiosis) to dogs and even to humans.

The Battle Plan

1. Flea and Tick Preventative

Using a topical or oral flea medication will prevent the unecessary suffering of your pet. If your pets are not on flea preventatives, there's a good chance they "Got fleas". Fortunately, a relatively new class of flea control products has been introduced over the past few years by several companies. These treatments are used monthly and provide the best protection available against fleas.
Frontline
Frontline
Advantage Flea Control
Advantage Flea Control
Sentinel
Sentinel
Frontline Plus
Frontline Plus


2. Immediate Flea and Tick Protection

Fleas spread fast, which is why immediate relief is often necessary. The distribution of fleas often involves the lower back, base of the tail, toward the back, the abdomen, flanks and neck. It may become quite generalized in severe cases, leading to total body involvement.
Ectokyl
Ectokyl
Capstar
Capstar
Tick Twisterr
Tick Twister
Vita-Soothe
Vitasoothe


3. Home and Yard Flea and Tick Protection

If one pet in the household has fleas, assume that all pets in the household have fleas. A single flea found on your pet means that there are probably hundreds of fleas, larva, pupa and eggs in your house.
Adam's Fogger
Adam's Fogger

Adam's Yard Spray
Siphotrol
Siphotrol
Knockout Fogger
Knockout Room Fogger


4. Flea and Tick Collars

Flea & Tick Collars can be effective, but must be applied properly. To get the right degree of snugness, you should just be able to get two fingers between the collar and your pet's neck. Be sure to cut off any excess portion of the collar after you have properly applied it. Otherwise, that animal or other pets may try to chew on the end.
Preventef-D for Dogs
Preventef-D
Breakaway for Cats
Breakaway for Cats
Preventic 2-PACK
Preventic 2-PACK


A Final Word

Keep in mind that until all of the fleas in your home have died, you will probably still see some fleas, even on a treated pet, since some immature forms may continue to develop. This is especially true if you had a big flea problem to start with. Persistence is the key here. It is essential to keep following an effective flea control program for a long enough time to get rid of all of the fleas, in all life stages. This may take several weeks to 6 months or more, depending on your particular situation.

Got Fleas? - Click here for more information. Also see Flea Medicine.