News & Advice

5 reasons to treat your pet for fleas this spring

Sep 18, 2019 | Cats, Dogs, Pet Health

Did you know that 95% of the problem (eggs, larvae and pupae) are living in your pet’s environment (your home, carpets, furniture and garden). A flea’s eggs can take anywhere from two days to two weeks to develop, hatching when environmental conditions are just right for them. If temperatures are cold and dry, the eggs will take longer; when temperatures are warm and humidity levels are high, the eggs will hatch at a faster rate – so here in the Waikato, where a humid spring is expected, it is particularly important to regularly treat our pets. Breaking the flea cycle will keep flea populations under control which is better for the health of our pets.

Why treat our pet for fleas?

  • Fleas make your pet itch! And itching can lead to skin trauma, rashes and even infected wounds.
  • Fleas also bite humans. (and make us itch too).
  • Flea’s cause health issues. We see plenty of animals with Flea Allergy Dermatitis [FAD]. This form of dermatitis only takes a single flea bite for your pet’s skin to react. FAD can result in redness, sores, itchiness and hair loss that may require further treatment.
  • A high burden of fleas in young or frail animals can result in Anaemia with blood loss and even death.
  • Only 5% of the fleas in your pet’s environment can be found on them. 95% of the problem (eggs, larvae and pupae) are living in your home in places like carpets, bedding, furniture and the garden, treating your pet will help break the cycle and get the flea population under control.

Flea Treatments – spot on, chew, collar? Which is right for my pet?

When deciding on a flea treatment for your pet there are a few things to take into consideration.

How long would you like the flea treatment to last?

Most flea treatments are monthly, but a lot of people find it difficult to remember every month. Extended treatments are available for both dogs and cats. There is a vet-only, waterproof flea collar for dogs and cats that lasts 8 months (Seresto). Additionally, there are spot-ons that you can get that last 3 months (cats) or 6 months (dogs).

How do you prefer to give your pet the flea treatment?

Some people prefer giving their animals tasty chews, while others prefer spot-on liquid. Chews can be a problem for the odd picky animal, or for the rare animal with allergies to the ingredients. Spot-on liquids are easy to apply but can sometimes leave a greasy stain, may temporarily delay bath-time or swim-time, and the occasional animal may develop a mild skin irritation. The Seresto flea collar does not suit animals who are likely to get the collar caught and broken/lost, but does last for 8 months. Each type of flea treatment comes with pros and cons, it’s just a matter of working out which type of flea treatment will suit you and your pet’s needs.

Do I want to treat for worms or ticks at the same time?

Only a few types of flea products contain de-worming products or are licensed for ticks. Also bear in mind that most of the flea/worm combination treatments do not kill tapeworm (the worm that your animal will get from eating fleas).

Is my animal allergic to fleas? Some animals get INTENSE itching from just a couple of fleas. These animals have ‘flea allergy dermatitis’ (FAD) and should be treated with a product licensed to treat FAD.

Remember, the flea products that your veterinary clinic carries come supported by a lot of research. At Anexa, we stock a range of quality products well supported by current research into their effectiveness and safety for your pets and yourself.
Still not sure which product will suit your pet – no worries, pop into your local Anexa clinic and one of our trained staff will help you out.

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