What are they?
Fleas are pesky small, wingless, flat parasites found on dogs and cats. There are said to be around 2,000 species of fleas worldwide, with more than 300 of those types found in the United States. The most common flea, Ctenocephalides felis, is a domestic cat flea.
These pesky parasites feed on a warm-blooded body. Don’t worry though- they prefer to fine dine on furry animals instead of humans. Fleas will mate, feed, and lay eggs while attached to their four-legged hosts, although the eggs tend to fall off into the yard, bedding, or carpet. (This is why it is very important to make sure you deep clean and heavily vacuum your home if fleas are ever an issue).
Fleas are annoying, small, and irritating. They feed on your pets by biting and causing irritation and discomfort. Some pets even have allergic reactions from these parasites.
How to prevent them?
Keep your pet on a flea preventative year-round. Yes, year-round! Especially in warmer climates, fleas can be around all year long. A good preventative from your veterinarian will keep them at bay. Make sure you wash your pets’ belongings on a regular basis (beds, collards, toys) and check their coat often for any signs that fleas might be there. Some signs of fleas are flea dirt near the base of the tail- looks like coffee grounds, small red bumps on the abdomen, and/or excessive scratching from your pet.
How to get rid of them?
Fleas are very difficult to get rid of once you have them. They can lay as many as 400-500 eggs in their lifetime. As mentioned before, deep cleaning your home and your pets’ belongings can help terminate these small parasites, but sometimes you must call the big guys and get a licensed professional to take care of the problem. (This could cost a pretty penny to get treated professionally.) The best way to get rid of fleas is to prevent them in the first place. Make sure your pet is on a veterinarian recommended flea control product such as Bravecto, a chew that lasts for 3 months, or Credelio, a once-a-month oral tablet. Over the counter preventatives purchased at stores or online pharmacies will not have a product warranty. When you buy prevention through a veterinarian and use it as directed, you will receive a Product Guarantee, which means if you’re not satisfied with the product, they will work with you and the veterinarian to make things right.
Call or text us today at 636-447-4555 to talk about different preventions we can get your pet on today.