What is a Flea?
These are small black blood sucking parasites that live on cats and dogs and other wild life. If your pet has fleas you may see “flea dirt” dried black discharge on the skin at the base of the fur. It can be confused with dirt.
Fleas can spread very fast. One flea can lay up to 250 eggs. It doesn’t take many fleas to cause an infestation. Fleas also carry diseases such as Haemobartonella in cats and they can transmit tapeworm if the flea is swallowed during grooming. To eliminate fleas in a house we would advise using a household spray as well which will help to kill the larvae as they hatch out. It is important to treat all the animals as the fleas can jump from one pet to another.
We would suggest flea prevention by using medications such as Stronghold or other “Spot-ons” or Program which prevents the flea’s eggs from hatching (goes on the food) or Comfortis a tablet which kills fleas within 2-4 hours. There are also long lasting collars which will slowly release the pesticide too.
Please be very careful of some of the commercial spot-ons as some of the dog treatments are very poisonous to cats and there have been deaths.
Most flea prevention is monthly. If your pet chases rabbits or hunts a lot they will be more susceptible to picking up fleas. If you are unsure of which product to use, let us know and we can help. We do offer free of charge flea check ups.
If you would like any more information then phone 01621 818282 (Tiptree Veterinary Centre) or 01206 561407 (Willows Veterinary Centre) to book an appointment with one of our vets. You can also visit our websites at www.tiptreevets.co.uk or www.willows-vets.co.uk