Among the most common dog parasites are fleas. These blood-sucking insects can not only make your pet uncomfortable but can also be harmful to his health. When a flea bites, it hurts him, but what’s scarier is the parasite’s saliva, which is a breeding ground for the worst infections.
The first priority for dog owners is to keep your pet safe from ticks (ears, hypodermis), or try to detect them as early as possible and rid your pet of unpleasant and dangerous ‘neighbors’.
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How dogs get infected by fleas
Some dog owners are confident that their pet living in the apartment will not be infected by parasites, however, there are risks of infection, even those dogs that cope with the need for the tray.
It’s worth considering any methods that fleas use to get into the skin of animals:
- Contact with an infected animal – if the yard dog itches, often and violently bite himself chewing into his fur, he is likely to have parasites. Has a pet communicated with such a dog? So you need to take a thorough look at his coat right after walking.
- Fleas can get on dogs from grass – if the animal is ‘almost full of fleas’, some of them stay on the ground where the dog walked. Fleas are quite resilient insects and can wait a long time for their future prey by climbing on the grass. Bloodsuckers are very good at jumping, especially when you consider their small size – 30-33 cm high and up to 20 cm long, so it is easy to get to the dog’s coat.
- Not only are adult parasites dangerous, but their larvae are also. They can also fall from an infected dog anywhere – on the grass, roads, fallen leaves, on the ground, and so on. Often eggs fleas penetrate into the home along with shoes, stuck to the shoe soles and even clothes. And this is a threat to dogs that do not go out or are there very rarely.
Considering all the above, we can say that anyone, even the most pet, can catch fleas.
It’s also worth considering that after curing your dog of blood-sucking parasites, there are risks of re-infection, as fleas, eggs or dolls may persist in the animal’s habitat – in the booth, on a bed, in a basket or in a bed. They may also infiltrate furniture and carpets. Therefore, all items that the sick dog has come into contact with also require cleaning and disinfectant treatment.
The danger of flea bites
Fleas definitely give animals discomfort and pain, but this is not their greatest danger. So what can you expect from these little bloodsuckers? The main trouble that fleas can cause is the following:
- They can carry with them all the diseases of the previous animal that the parasites lived on. Typhoid, plague, tularemia are just a few of the serious ailments that can infect a flea.
- Flea saliva causes irritation and itchy skin at bite sites. A dog tearing the skin with his claws and teeth, which itches, provokes the re-infection of wounds, dermatological diseases, and allergic symptoms.
- Fleas may act as an intermediate host for cucumber chains, which are the agents of dipilidiosis and some types of worms.
- In weakened, old animals and small puppies, infection with fleas can lead to severe exhaustion or anemia.
Owners need to keep a close eye on their pets and eliminate fleas in time to avoid complications. And to do so, they need to know the signs.
Look for Signs That Your Pet May Be Infected
To prevent this from happening, your pet should be watched closely and the owner should be alerted to the following behavior:
- The dog sleeps restlessly, constantly changing the place to rest;
- Your pet may jump suddenly when in a calm state;
- He often kinks his back and stops in this position for a few seconds;
- The animal gnaws at its skin, and you can hear its teeth snapping;
- There is an itch – the dog scratches very quickly and violently, and this behavior is not like scratching.
If flea infection is suspected, you should examine your dog’s skin. If your pet has inflamed areas on his skin, points of baked blood, it means that he has these parasitic insects.
it’s most commonly found in the abdomen, inside the thighs, on the crest, and behind the ears. Also, in case of allergy, your pet’s tears from the corners of his eyes increase, and hair loss may occur. The bites will catch up with time.
If he is severely injured, he’ll have bald spots on the crest, groats and at the base of his tail. If left untreated in time, the dog may lose all his hair and may also be fatal due to secondary infection.
What kills fleas on dogs instantly?
The following actions are extremely important:
- the animal bedding should be discarded or, if possible, boiled;
- treat every place in the apartment where the animal was sick with flea treatments;
- vacuum the floor, and if the vacuum cleaner is bagged, destroy the dust container.
If the pet is prone to allergies, it is better to seek advice from a veterinarian, who will prescribe safe treatment that does not cause complications.
The veterinarian may prescribe the following antisolar medicines:
- in the form of a spray;
- cleansing gels and shampoos;
- insecticide collars;
- chewing pills;
- folk recipes.
Flea sprays for dogs
Dog flea sprays
The drug is sprayed all over the wool cover. In a way, it’s not the most convenient flea treatment for dogs as it is:
- can get into an animal’s eyes;
- high risk of the product licking;
- you can’t touch a dog for 24 hours after treatment;
- if your pet is used to sleeping in a host’s bed, he should not be allowed to go there after the spray treatment;
- the procedure should be carried out in gloves in a well-ventilated room and even better, in the open air;
- it is very difficult to dose, so it is possible to exceed the required amount.
The most popular are the following flea sprays – Frontline, Bars, Ghett, Hartz, Noroklin Extra, Behar.
Flea drops for dogs
It’s a liquid agent that’s applied to the animal’s crest. The active droplet component is absorbed by the upper layer of the skin, scares away and eliminates parasites. Against fleas acts instantly, with other parasitic insects cope after a while.
Means of this group are powerful enough and are able to completely rid your pet of fleas. Among the most effective brands are the following: Stronghold, Bars, Advantage (for small breeds of dogs), Advantix.
These products have a number of contraindications and you should read before use.
Special flea shampoos for dogs
Dog flea shampoos
They are not particularly effective, as they do not completely eliminate parasites from animals, only reducing their number.
It is necessary to wet his coat with warm water, apply the product and wait for the specified time, usually 5-10 minutes. After shampooing, it is advisable to wash off and brush his coat thoroughly with frequent teeth to remove dead or paralyzed insects.
Not medicated. Among the disadvantages are the following:
- They are toxic agents.
- Some cannot be used on puppies under six months and older animals
- Contraindicated for pets with kidney, liver and neurological problems.
- It can provoke dermatological diseases, allergic reactions.
The collar is worn around the dog’s neck and the protection lasts from three to six months. This is not only a flea treatment but also a preventive. Products that have proven themselves: Beaphar, Dr. Zoo, Purebred, Bolfo, Bars.
Flea pills for dogs
It is the least popular tool, although very easy to use. The pet is treated with a tablet, which is to taste a real treat, after a while the procedure is repeated. It is possible to use it from the age of 2 months.
These drugs are available from well-known manufacturers: Frontline, Capstar, Bravecto, Comfortis. In addition to pharmacy products, there are also home ways to get rid of fleas using folk recipes.
Folkways to eliminate fleas
In this segment, you can find both the safest methods to eliminate parasites and not so:
- Combing out insects with a comb with frequent teeth is the most harmless way for the animal and the most laborious for the owner, one procedure can not do without.
- Washing your pet with tar soap can replace the use of special shampoos. But with frequent use, it can lead to dry skin.
- Use wormwood – a decoction of the grass washed the floor and other surfaces, put linen bags with dried wormwood. Rub the dog’s coat with it. You can also use a puppy for the same purpose.
- If the dog lives in a booth, it is better to use sawdust as bedding.
Purebred – An infusion of vodka is used as a drop on the knoll but not more than three drops as it is very toxic.
- Garlic – a powerful anti-parasitic agent that eliminates not only fleas but also worms and other parasites. Shredded garlic is used to treat coat, but very carefully so that your dog can’t lick it. Garlic can be added in small quantities to your pet’s food.
Of course, it is easier to prevent infection than to fight it later, so you should keep your home clean and regularly perform wet cleaning.
It is advisable to examine your dog, especially in spring and summer. At the same time, it’s best to use a special flea collar. Care should be taken to ensure that your pet has no contact with unknown dogs.
It is not realistic to completely protect your dog from fleas, but it is possible to reduce the risk of infection.