The cat flea and dog flea have the potential to breed inside your house within 12 days, each female flea can lay several hundred eggs per week starting 24-48 hours after her first blood feed from your cat or dog. Use flea treatment and flea drops regularly to ensure cat fleas and dog fleas do not return.
If you would like more information or help with fleas and flea treatments, then visit our new VetUK Flea Treatment page, where you can compare flea treatments, find out how to apply the products and even get tailored advice on which products would be most suitable for your pet.
Fleas can cause a host of problems for both you and your pet. But with a multi-layered approach to flea control, you and your pet can enjoy flea-free fun together.
The dog flea (Ctenocephalides canis) lives primarily off the blood of dogs; an act that in itself can spread tapeworm infestation and other diseases. Other problems caused by dog fleas may range from mild to severe itching and discomfort to skin problems and infections. In extreme circumstance Anaemia may also result from fleabites. When fleas trouble dogs, they scratch and bite themselves - especially in areas where fleas normally concentrate in such as the head, neck and around the tail. The incessant scratching and biting may cause the dog’s skin to become red and inflamed. Flea allergy dermatitis is developed by dogs allergic to flea saliva. In this case, the symptoms previously mentioned are more pronounced. Because of compulsive scratching and biting, the dog may lose hair, get bald spots, exhibit hot spots due to extreme irritation and develop infections that result in smelly skin. Dog fleas can live without food for several months but females must have a blood meal before they can produce eggs. They can deliver about 4,000 eggs on the host’s fur and the whole lifecycle from egg to adult takes from two to three weeks.
When you find fleas on your pet you need to get rid of them as soon as possible using an effective flea treatment such as flea drops. Thankfully, topical medications have revolutionized the way we can treat fleas because topical flea treatments work in conjunction with the natural oils in your pet’s skin, wait two days after bathing to apply the medications and do not allow swimming or bathing for 4 days after application. In the summer, or in the face of severe flea infestations they can be safely applied at three-week intervals to ensure effectiveness. When fleas are discovered on your pet, treatment is very important - but if you don’t treat the environment your pet lives in, the fleas will continue to thrive and flourish in your home and yard, constantly re-infesting your pet.
Vacuuming your home is one of the most important ways to control and help eradicate fleas. Make sure you regularly vacuum carpets, floors, and especially areas around where your pet sleeps such as blankets beds, sofas, etc. Finding fleas on your pet and in your home can be a terrible discovery so make sure you select the right dog flea treatment or cat flea treatment and apply the flea drops to keep your pet, your home, and your family flea-free.