Dogs are man’s best friend, and fleas are their worst enemies. If you want your best friend to be happy, and free from health problems, you should know how to spot them, get rid of them, and more importantly, prevent them from invading your dog’s fur.
You shouldn’t have to wait for your vet to tell you that your dog has been overrun with fleas. Here are some signs you should look out for:
- Your dog is scratching a lot!
- There are brown jumping “crumbs” on his/her fur
- Flea dirt that turns red when they come in contact with water
- Flea bites (small red bumps)
Getting rid of fleas
There are many products available on the market that can help to kill and repel fleas, such as topical ointments, oral medication, and flea collars. They gradually get rid of fleas, some within an hour or two, and typically contain ingredients such as Methoprene, Pyriproxyfen, Fipronil, Imidacloprid, and Permethrins.
The first two ingredients work by retarding flea growth and prevent young fleas from turning into adults, while the rest interfere with their cellular function, eventually killing them. Note that these ingredients are safe for both humans and dogs, however, permethrin may be toxic for cats.
Clearing your home of fleas
If your dog has fleas, chances are, your home will have them. You must clean the environment thoroughly to prevent them from coming back. Be sure to vacuum your floors and underneath your furniture. Wash all the bedding, and remember, bleach is your best friend! Get rid of overgrowth in your yard, then call in a professional pest control company to handle the rest.
Prevention is always better than cure, and you can stop this from becoming a recurring issue by using flea medication as a preventative measure. Discourage your dog from coming in contact with wild animals that carry fleas, and avoid crowded dog parks.
Fleas thrive in warm areas, so it’s especially important to pay attention to these tips if the weather is like this in your area. Regular baths are also key to keeping your dog flea-free.
Fleas are a nightmare, but luckily you can prevent them. Sometimes, it may take up to 3 months to get rid of them, so pay close attention to the given tips. Don’t forget to check in with your veterinarian for more tips, and an overall health assessment to give your best friend the most comfortable life!