Ticks and fleas are two of the most common causes of concern for pet owners in America. While your pets are playing outside, it can be extremely easy for them to come in contact with ticks and fleas. And, when a pet is not armed with effective protection, ticks and fleas can easily be brought right into your home. It’s important to take the necessary precautions against ticks and fleas – for both your pet and your family.
What are Ticks & Fleas?
Ticks are related to spiders. They have eight legs. They have flat, oval bodies that swell when they eat. They feed on the blood of all kinds of animals, from birds to dogs, cats, deer and even humans. Ticks are very small. Adult ticks are only about the size of an apple seed, unless they’ve just fed. They can be hard to spot, which is partly why they’re so good at passing along illnesses without getting caught.
Ticks spread disease by passing along bacteria, viruses, and parasites (organisms that feed off their hosts). There are several diseases that can be transmitted to your pet from a tick bite. Some of the most common tick-borne diseases seen in the United States are Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, American canine hepatozoonosism and tick paralysis. Tick bites can cause blood loss, anemia, tick paralysis, skin irritations and infections. Tick bites can also cause Cytauxzoonosis in cats, a lethal infection that can cause high fever, loss of appetite, difficulty breathing, jaundice, coma, and eventually death. Protecting your dog or cat from ticks is an important part of disease prevention.
Fleas are parasites that can spread several diseases on your dog including dermatitis, tapeworms, and anemia. Many dogs suffer from flea allergy dermatitis (FAD), an allergic condition caused by flea bites. This is one of the most common reasons pet owners take their dogs to the veterinarian. Flea bites can trigger an immune response in your dog with symptoms that include intense skin irritation and itchiness that extends beyond the location of the bites, hair loss, and skin infections. Therefore, it’s important to keep fleas and ticks away from your pets and your home.
Veterinarian Recommended Flea & Tick Treatments
- Oral Medication: There are a number of oral medications that Bregman Veterinary Group will prescribe your cat or dog depending on your pet’s flea and tick situation. It is important to visit your veterinarian so they can assess the situation and prescribe the right medication to protect your dog or cat.
- Tick Collars: Tick collars are the most popular item for preventing ticks among pet owners. Bregman Veterinary Group will recommend the tick collar that will be most effective for your pet and their condition. Some pets may experience irritation from a tick collar. If you notice any reactions to the collar you should contact your veterinarian immediately.
It is very important to speak with your veterinarian about your pet’s tick and flea situation. Your Veterinarian will recommend the best tick and flea solution to help remedy the situation and keep you and your pet safe. For more information on which treatment is the most effective flea and tick treatment for your pet, contact Bregman Veterinary Group.