How To Win The War Against Your Dogs Fleas

How To Win The War Against Your Dogs Fleas



All dogs pick up fleas,​ ticks,​ and chiggers at​ one time or​ another,​ usually during the​ warm weather months. Even a​ pampered city pet can pick up a​ stray flea from a​ potted plant. Hunting dogs often return home with a​ collection of​ chiggers or​ ticks. Fleas hop from one dog to​ another with amazing speed and agility. Your pet only needs to​ greet one flea infested friend in​ order to​ acquire the​ beginning of​ a​ flea colony of​ his own.

External parasites are not a​ special affliction of​ dogs. the​ dog is​ simply a​ convenient host for them. We would probably have them too,​ if​ our bodies were covered with hair and we ran around without shoes and clothing and sat or​ slept on​ the​ ground. Fleas are the​ most common,​ the​ easiest to​ detect and to​ get rid of. Fleas appear as​ black specks on​ a​ fine tooth comb,​ and a​ single one can drive a​ dog crazy.

The worst part of​ fleas is​ that they act as​ hosts to​ tapeworm larvae,​ and if​ your dog swallows one you​ may end up with a​ worm problem too. you​ can trap fleas in​ a​ silky smooth coat with a​ flea comb,​ but fleas that nestle in​ the​ dense undercoat of​ double coated dogs must be treated with a​ product that penetrates the​ skin,​ and a​ regular mild treatment is​ safer than an​ occasional severe one.

In one day a​ single flea can bite your pet 400 times,​ while consuming more than its own bodyweight in​ blood. Some dogs can contract flea allergy dermatitis,​ an​ allergic reaction to​ the​ flea’s saliva. the​ severity and length of​ the​ flea season varies depending on​ what part of​ the​ country you​ live in,​ but it​ is​ best to​ treat your pet in​ early spring,​ (April – May). in​ northern climates,​ flea and tick season usually lasts approximately 4 months,​ but in​ the​ extreme south,​ fleas can live all year long.

There are more than 2000 species of​ fleas in​ the​ United States alone,​ but the​ one that attacks most pets is​ the​ cat flea,​ Ctenocephalides Felis. a​ cat flea can lay up to​ one egg per hour,​ and within two days,​ a​ wormlike larvae will hatch from those eggs. the​ eggs are oval,​ smooth,​ and about 0.5mm in​ size. the​ hatched larvae will range from 1.5 to​ 5mm in​ length. the​ complete cycle from egg to​ adult takes approximately 30 to​ 75 days depending on​ temperature and humidity.

Adult fleas are about 1/16 to​ 1/8 inch long,​ are dark reddish brown,​ wingless,​ hard bodied,​ have three pairs of​ legs and are flattened from side to​ side. Fleas can jump vertically up to​ seven inches,​ and horizontally up to​ fourteen inches. They have piercing – sucking mouth parts and spines on​ their body. Adult fleas cannot survive or​ lay eggs without a​ blood meal,​ but may live from two months to​ one year without feeding.

In order to​ effectively control an​ infestation,​ fleas must be removed from the​ pet,​ the​ home,​ and the​ yard. Starting with the​ pet,​ there are shampoos,​ topical treatments,​ sprays,​ collars,​ and oral medications. the​ least recommended is​ shampoo,​ due to​ the​ grooming the​ pet does to​ his own coat. the​ pesticides can be toxic if​ they are consumed in​ quantity. Topical treatments are better,​ along with sprays and collars,​ but the​ best and most recommended is​ the​ oral medication Lufenuron called “Program” from your veterinarian.

To clean the​ home,​ all areas frequented by the​ dog should be cleaned thoroughly by vacuuming,​ washing bedding and rugs and possible treatment by insecticides. Treating your carpet with a​ Borate powder such as​ “Borax” laundry powder works as​ a​ poison upon ingestion by the​ flea,​ simply sprinkle the​ powder on​ your carpets and leave it​ for a​ few h ours before vacuuming will rid most homes of​ their fleas. a​ second treatment can follow if​ necessary. It’s cheap,​ you​ can do it​ yourself and there are no insecticides used.

To treat the​ lawn and around the​ homes exterior,​ pyrethroids such as​ “Archer” or​ “Nylan”,​ as​ well as​ fenoxy carb such as​ “Logic” or​ “Torus” can be effective. Outdoor treatment is​ usually only done in​ extreme or​ severe cases of​ flea infestation and may not be necessary. you​ should however keep your lawn trimmed to​ create a​ drier,​ less ideal environment for flea larvae. if​ you​ don’t want to​ handle the​ pesticides yourself,​ any licensed professional pest control operator can do the​ treatment for you.

In summary,​ you​ should check with your veterinarian before using any form of​ flea treatment. Never use products for dogs on​ a​ cat,​ as​ cats are more sensitive to​ the​ pesticide and they groom themselves more thoroughly. Never apply pesticides to​ young,​ pregnant,​ or​ sick animals,​ and use alternative methods to​ control fleas,​ such as​ combing frequently with a​ flea comb,​ vacuum your home frequently and dispose of​ the​ vacuum bag,​ wash all pet bedding regularly,​ and bathe your pet with a​ pesticide free shampoo. Prevention is​ much easier than dealing with an​ infestation.




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