Although central heating has turned even the best kept homes into all-year round flea havens, summer, traditionally, is the start of flea infestation time – and this is set to be a great year for them!
There are four stages in the flea lifecycle: eggs, larvae, pupae and adult fleas. Only adult fleas live on the pet, picked up outside – the rest live in your home and the outside environment.
Unfortunately homeopathic and herbal remedies are not very effective, at best repelling fleas for a short while. For a cat or dog with Flea Allergic Dermatitis (shown by little scabs under the fur, especially near it’s tail) this is no fun. To ensure your pets and home stay flea-free, treat them regularly with a recommended product such as Advocate (for cats and dogs), Stronghold (cats), or Frontline Combo (cats and dogs). There is also an effective 6 monthly injection for cats to prevent fleas from breeding. You need to treat regularly all year around for the best flea control.
If just reading this is making you itch, think of how your pet feels when it has fleas – for every flea you see, there are around 80 more in the environment!
It’s also set to be a big year for ticks. Abundant from March to October, of the 20+ tick species in the UK, some are as small as a poppy seed. They feed on blood (including ours!) and can and transmit Lyme Disease, a serious illness that’s hard to diagnose in it’s early stages apart from a pink/red circular rash around the area of the bite, three to 30 days after being bitten.
If possible, remove ticks within 24 hours of attachment – HOW you do that is important! Use a ‘proper’ Tick Remover. Tweezers, vaseline, or pulling the tick off can squeeze (and transmit disease) into the blood stream, or leave the head and mouthparts in the skin, causing infection.
There best treatments are available from your veterinary practice, such as Advantix, and Frontline Combo. The ticks will still attach but will die. For more information, please call Clockhouse on 01453 752555.