There are many species of fleas, but only one, Ctenocephalides cats, is effective against both dogs and cats. Fleas are a problem for dogs and their owners for a long time.
Flea Infestation in Dogs there Causes and Conditions
Fleas can be more than a nuisance. They can also cause serious health problems for dogs such as the ones below:
A severe flea infestation can cause anemia. Anemia refers to a condition in which there aren’t enough red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. Anemia can lead to death in dogs that are very small or young and debilitated.
Flea allergy dermatologitis occurs when a dog becomes allergic to flea saliva. This condition can cause severe scratching, which can cause hair loss and even skin infections.
Dogs can get dipylidium caninum infection from fleas they have ingested while grooming themselves. Although it isn’t usually dangerous for dogs, owners should be aware that tapeworm segments can fall from the dog’s rectum onto the dog’s bedding or floor-covering.
Flea Life Cycle
In order to control flea infestations, it’s important to understand the flea life cycle:
- Adult fleas lay eggs on dogs. They are released into the environment and incubate in your bedding, pet’s bedding or furniture.
- Larvae – The flea eggs hatch and become small, crawling larvae. The stool of adult fleas is the food source for larvae. It has also fallen off the dog. After three molts the larvae spin a cocoon to become pupae
- Puppy: The pupae become adult fleas within the cocoon. They are extremely difficult to kill at this stage. Puppye can remain dormant in their cocoons for as long as a year. Pupae do not come out of the cocoon until they find a host that can provide food. This is what they perceive through sound, vibrations, light and carbon dioxide variations.
- Adult fleas – Adult fleas are aggressive in their search for a host to eat their first blood meal. After she is fed, the female flea will start to lay eggs within two days. She will continue to do so until she dies. Although fleas can live up to six weeks, they are usually kept clean by their host dogs.
Flea Control Products for Dogs
There are many flea products available for dogs. There are both over-the-counter products and prescription products. These are the most popular prescription products and their actions.
It is important to read all labels when choosing an over-the-counter flea product. You should choose the right product for your dog’s age and weight. Many products can be toxic to cats. These products can cause serious health problems for cats who live in homes with dogs that have been treated with them.
These are some of the most popular brands of flea prevention products:
Advantage®II: This spot-on product.
K9 Advantix®II is a spot-on product.
Seresto is a flea and tick collar.
Frontline® Plus is a spot-on product.
Revolution® is a spot-on product.
Comfortis® is a oral tablet.
Preventing is better than treating. However, if you have an infestation already, these products will help you to control it. A product that treats your yard and home may be required. The best way to get rid of fleas is to consult your veterinarian. It is important that you stick to the treatment. You may see fleas for several months after the flea cycle is broken.