Fleas not only are a hazard to your pet but also to your whole household.
The prevalence of fleas in southwestern Ontario has increased with our longer warm weather. Fleas generally become active in April or May but when we have a short winter, they could be out earlier.
Fleas can be transmitted not only between animals but onto the people in your family as well. It’s important to treat your pet to prevent an infestation. Once you have an infestation on your pet, you likely have one throughout your home. Common signs of fleas are excessive itching, loss of hair, inflamed skin or visible bite marks.
Over-the-counter medication at pet and grocery stores are not effective at preventing fleas from setting up home on your pet. Your best choices are either topical treatment or oral treatment. These are only available through veterinarians.
Depending on the medication, it will either kill the adult flea or make the adult flea sterile- they will not be able to reproduce and develop more eggs. If your pet does have fleas, at least three to six months of medication is required to target all of the fleas. Since the medication targets adult fleas, your pet must receive dosing for the following months when the eggs have hatched and become adults.
Many fleas medication also treat ticks. Ticks are becoming a larger problem in our area as our climate changes. Ticks carry harmful diseases for both your pet and your family. Preventive treatment is always a good choice rather than having to deal with the illnesses that can result.
The heartworm parasite is transmitted to your pet through mosquitoes. Even with a heavy coat, your pet is at risk of being bitten by an infected mosquito. Think your pet is safe because they don’t go outside often? It only takes one bite from one infected mosquito to transmit the heartworm parasite.
When a dog becomes infected with the heartworm parasite, symptoms are generally not exhibited until the late stages of the disease. Heartworm travels to the your dog’s heart and overruns the heart muscle. Untreated, this result in the death of your companion.
Heartworm tests are very important. Caradoc Animal Clinic always has heartworm tests available with a blood sample. This test detects any heartworm circulating in the bloodstream.
Preventive medication is given either topically or orally once every month until the first heavy frost.
Call us today at (519) 245-1001 to schedule an appointment for a parasite assessment and prevention.