While the warmer months bring us perfect weather for getting out to the park with our furry friends, the conditions are also unfortunately favourable to fleas. That’s right, flea season is here again. But fret not! We have you covered with our Upmarket Pets Guide To Surviving Flea Season.
The presence of fleas can be identified in a number of ways. The most obvious being your pet excessively scratching. If you sift through your pet’s hair, you may find something that looks like specks of dirt. If these specks get damp and dissolve into red puddles, they are flea faeces, and a good sign that you should start some form of treatment.
Flea eggs look like grains of salt. These are only loosely attached when a flea lays them, as it is beneficial to the parasite for them to fall off your pet. They can end up in carpet, beds, and on the couch where they can hatch in under 10 days. The flea larvae then forms a cocoon where it turns into an adult in about 2 weeks, or it may remain dormant for 6 months! This is why it’s also extremely important to treat the surrounding environment for fleas.
And of course another sign is adult fleas themselves – which may be tricker to spot as they will wriggle away through the jungle of fur, or leap elsewhere with their powerful legs. An adult flea can leap up to 100 times its body length! Please also note, that adult fleas only ever make up about 5% of the flea population – the rest are eggs and larvae. The life cycle of a flea usually spans about 3 weeks, but we’re going to tell you how to shorten that!
Protect your pets with flea treatments from well-known brands such as Advantage, Advantix, Advocate, Frontline, Revolution, or Sentinel. These brands offer a range of treatments to attack fleas in all stages of their life cycle. Adulticides are fast acting and attack adult fleas. These are usually available as liquids which are applied directly to your pet’s skin, but can come in tablet form. Insect Growth Regulators are designed to kill flea eggs and larvae, but won’t kill adult fleas. They break the flea’s life cycle to stop full blown infestations, and can be used in conjunction with treatments for adult fleas. Flea shampoos, sprays, combs and collars can also provide some relief.
Caution: Because cats groom themselves by licking their fur, it is extremely important to use a flea treatment that is specifically formulated for felines. Otherwise you could risk poisoning your cat.
The instructions provided with any flea treatment should always be followed carefully. These products are designed to kill, so any misuse could be harmful to your pet.
For maximum effectiveness, you should treat your home environment for fleas the same day as you treat your pet. Vacuum or steam clean carpets (especially underneath furniture), as this will rid an area of eggs, larvae, and pupae. Make sure to dispose of the vacuum bag straight away, as eggs can hatch inside the vacuum and escape.
There are also some commercial carpet sprays available, and even pet-safe granules for treating lawns outside. So why not come in today and ask us about which flea control product is best to suit your needs?
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