Scratch… scratch… scratch. Do you have an itchy pet? Sometimes, allergies and skin conditions can be to blame, but it is often the tiniest little pest that creates the biggest problem for households with pets. Fleas can cause intense itching, skin infections, intestinal parasites, and are a total drag. Without a yearly hard freeze to mitigate their numbers each year, fleas are rampant among wildlife, farm animals, and domestic pets in our area. Immune challenged, older, and sick pets will find themselves plagued by pests more often, since parasites want an easy meal.
As with most issues, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Flea preventative medicines come in many forms: prescription pills from your vet; over-the-counter solutions in the form of topical liquids and flea collars (some work better than others); and various products for treating yards and homes. If you or your pet are sensitive to the idea of pesticides, we have many all-natural alternatives in all of these same forms:
- Riptide Recommends- Earth Animal Nature’s Protection internal treatment
- Penny Picks- Wondercide Flea/Tick Peppermint spray
- Lucky Loves- Earth Animal’s monthly topical drops
- Jasper Jumps (for)- Cool Pet Liquid Vet Flea Away liquid
Did you know that even indoor cats, rabbits, ferrets, and any small furry animal can get fleas? Almost any living creature or inanimate object can bring a flea into your home. Other pets such as dogs are obvious culprits, but fleas can also jump onto your clothes, shoes, and bags, and be inadvertently carried indoors that way. Fleas can find their way into your space via neighboring lawns and local wildlife, creating an ongoing battle. Daily combing can help you spy fleas quickly before an infestation sets in (and as a bonus, is beneficial to your pet in many other ways!)
If you find your pets have a few fleas, take action immediately: where there are a few, there will be more.
- Immediately give them a bath
- Comb your pets with a flea comb to remove fleas and their eggs.
- Vacuum, vacuum, vacuum: we can’t stress this enough! Vacuum carpets, pet beds, and upholstery daily to remove the pests at all stages of their life cycle. Flea eggs can lay dormant for weeks or months, so it is important to continue to vacuum even after you believe your infestation is remedied.
Flea prevention works like a tripod: if you are missing a leg, the whole thing falls down! Treat the pet, the inside environment (home and bedding), and the outside environment (focusing on frequented areas). If you have any questions about preventing and remedying fleas, please ask us in store!