Pets Are Important Too

Removing Fleas From Your Pet And Home

by Aurore Fontai

If you have noticed small crawling and hopping insects on your cat or dog's fur coat, they most likely have contracted fleas. Fleas are tiny parasites that cause skin problems for pets if they are not removed promptly. They can also start becoming embedded in your carpeting and bedding if they hop off of your pet. If you have never dealt with fleas before, you will most likely feel uncomfortable and anxious about helping your pet and removing them from your home.

With diligent steps, fleas can be completely eradicated. Here are tips to use when removing fleas from your pet, getting them out of your home, and keeping them from returning:

Removing Fleas From Your Pet

The best way to remove fleas from a dog or cat is to take a trip to your pet's veterinarian to ask for a flea treatment. Most veterinarians will carry a topical medication which can be applied to your pet in the comfort of your home. It is placed between the shoulder blades so your pet will not try to lick or bite at the medication. It will usually work within hours at killing fleas on their body.

After the treatment has been in place for a day, use a flea comb to remove dead fleas from your pet's fur. You may find a few stragglers, but they will most likely be affected by the treatment, making them easy to capture and remove. The flea comb will also remove eggs and larvae. The treatment will work for about a month and then you will need to apply a new one.

If you are unable to get to a veterinarian right away, give your dog or cat a bath in a dish detergent/water mixture. If you use this method, fleas will die but eggs and larvae will remain on the coat so combing becomes imperative. The dish soap treatment is preferred if you plan on picking up a topical treatment later, as it will not cause conflicting reactions. If you use a flea shampoo, you will not be able to use a topical treatment for several weeks afterward because it would overload your pet's skin with chemicals.

Getting Fleas Out Of Your Home

After your pet is treated, you need to treat your home so eggs that have not yet hatched do not survive. Vacuum all carpets and throw away the vacuum cleaner bag or put the contents in the bin in a plastic bag and tie tight. Placing a flea collar in the bag or bin when you vacuum helps kill fleas before you dispose of them. Wash all bedding in hot water.

If the fleas are still visible, use a fogger to remove. These can be purchased in a pet store. Place one in each affected room and leave the home for the day so the chemical can be released without inhaling it. Make sure your pet is out of the home as well. These work wonderfully at killing all fleas.

Keeping Fleas From Coming Back

If you keep up with monthly treatments, your pet will not contract fleas. It is best to do this from early spring to late fall. Keep your lawn mowed and treat it for insects. Limit the exposure your pet has to the outdoors if you fear they will get fleas. Keep them out of grassy areas until weather becomes cooler.

Contact a company such as Abri Animal Hospital to learn more.