Fleas are a very common problem in both dogs and cats, and most will suffer from a flea burden at some point in their lives. Cats are more prone to dogs for having fleas, with 1:10 dogs and 1:5 cats being affected at any one time. Fleas commonly cause problems such as itching, irritation, skin disorders (Flea allergic Dermatitis) and, in young or compromised animals, can cause anaemia. Fleas are also responsible for transmission of the Tapeworm Dipylidium caninum.
We recommend preventative treatments for the control of fleas. A monthly spot-on can protect your pet and family from the nuisance of flea bites. Prescription only medicines are prescribed to animals under our care, but for animals we have not seen, alternative products are available over the counter. It is vital that all pet members of the household are treated at the same time to prevent the burden shifting from one pet to another.
Fleas found on pets are, in fact, the minority when compared to their environment; a mere 5% of the problem is seen on the animal with a whopping 95% of the problem existing as unseen eggs, larvae and pupae in the environment. A statement that always gets us itching!
We always recommend treating the pets environment with an Insect Growth Regulator Spray, which can be obtained from the practice. We recommend that this is carried out annually to prevent an infestation from occuring. Unfortunately, there is a stage of the flea lifecycle that we are unable to destroy. This means that sometimes it can be some weeks before a flea problem can be completely under control, even when treated properly. For this reason, we always recommend preventative, consistent flea treatment to stop an infestation from getting a hold of your household. It is important to ensure all areas of the house and indeed the areas where your dog sleeps, are treated.