Protect Your Pets From Fleas, Ticks, and Mosquitoes

Ticks, fleas, mosquitoes and all other pests are out in full force and this can put your pet at an increased health risk.  The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) says pet owners should take special care to protect their pets from ticks, fleas and mosquitoes this season. You can find products to protect your pets at vetdepot.  Dogs, cats and other pets are especially susceptible to health risks posed by such pests.

Some health risks include the transmission of heartworms to pets via Mosquitoes which can result in heart disease, ticks can cause diseases such as Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever by spreading bacteria to pets.  In addition, the saliva from fleas can cause anemia, dermatitis and the transfer of tapeworms to pets.  Fleas often jump onto pets when outdoors and enter into homes where they can multiply and quickly infest bedding, furniture and clothing.

It is important to always inspect pet coats thoroughly after spending time outdoors.  Here are a few recommended tips from the NPMA to keep your pet safe from pests:

  • Watch for excessive scratching or licking on your pet
  • Avoid walking pets in tall grass, pests love to gather here
  • Wash pet bedding, plush toys and vacuum frequently
  • Talk to your veterinarian about treatment options to protect your pet, and seek medical advice if ticks or fleas are found on your pet

Fleas Not Resistant to Leading Treatments

Some users of popular once-a-month flea control treatments question if fleas are developng a resistance to the treatments after seeing fleas persist on their pets.  Veterinarians are put in a difficult spot trying to decide whether there is actually a resistance or if it is due to improper application or the environment.  More often than not, the Veterinarian prescribes a new spot-on and the issue continues.  In a recent article in Veterinary Practice News, Michael Dryden, DVM, Ph.D., a professor of veterinary parasitology in Kansas State University’s Department of Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology says, “I have investigated homes that by owner description sound like there could be a resistance problem but found, when I looked closer, there was always a reason for the failure.  None was ever resistance.”  Veterinarians need to take the time to educate clients about what to expect from these medications and how to properly use it.

“Sometimes clients are simply mistaken about their compliance.  One client swore she was doing everything as instructed, but when we asked her to come to the clinic to demonstrate her application technique, we found that she hadn’t opened the pipette.”   As seen by Jay Stewart, DVM, of the Companion Animal Parasite Council and the owner of Aumsville Animal Clinic in Aumsville, Oregon.  It is important to pay close attention to the results of spot-on insecticides in order to determine if ever a resistance does occur.  There are more than 400 North American flea species that can carry a plethora of diseases for pets and humans.  The leading topical flea treatments include Frontline Plus, Advantage, and K9 Advantix.