Animals have been the best friends of humans for ages. The popularity of pets with humans is largely due to their ability to lower our stress levels. As pets provide us comfort and companionship, it is also important for us to take care of them and protect them. One of the most common yet serious problems faced by our pets is that of “Fleas and Ticks”.
Fleas and ticks are the most common parasites that infect both cats and dogs and can have potentially serious consequences for our pets. These blood sucking insects attach themselves to the skin and cause itching and infection. If appropriate care is not taken to protect your pet when your pet is infested by fleas and ticks, then it may lead to severe allergies and infections.
Fleas and Ticks even bite and suck the blood of humans. Ticks can potentially transmit a very serious disease called “Lyme Disease”. This disease is a bacterial infection that may prove to be fatal if not treated in time. So it is really important for pet owners to be informed about the various ways in which their pets can be protected against fleas and ticks. Here is a quick view of the various options available to keep pets healthy and safe.
Fleas and ticks are dangerous parasites which feed on the blood of animals. Though tiny, these insects can jump lengths of over a foot, and have a lifespan of several months which makes the task of eliminating the risk of fleas or ticks difficult even for diligent pet owners. If you are looking for an effective way to control these parasites, then you will need to treat not only your pet, but also your home, yard and maybe even your car. The eggs and larvae of fleas and ticks can be hidden in the carpeting, bedding, and upholstery and even in the cracks of the doors, windows and floors. These pearly white eggs are barely visible to the naked eye and are usually impossible to find without a magnifying lens. The eggs hatch into larvae in 1 – 10 days, depending on the temperature and humidity; the warmer it is and the more the humidity, the more rapidly the eggs hatch. The larvae feed on adult flea droppings, therefore they are found in highest numbers in areas where flea-infested animals spend much of their time. Larvae are sensitive to drying and sunlight; therefore they prefer deep carpet, bedding, and cracks in the floor board. Outside the house, the larvae prefer shaded areas that have plenty of organic material (grass, leaves, etc.) or moist, sheltered soil. To keep fleas and ticks under control, it is very important to keep these areas clean.
One of the easiest ways to control fleas and ticks is to use sprays. These days there are several different sprays available which can be used to treat your pets’ sleeping and living areas and all other areas where the possibilities of the existence of these eggs and larvae are high.
Another option for Flea and Tick Medicine is collars. These Flea and Tick collars help keep fleas and ticks at bay. Depending on the type of collar, flea and tick collars can kill all stages of fleas as well as adult ticks. There are specific collars for dogs and for cats. These collars use a concentrated chemical to repel fleas and ticks. The chemical disperses all over the animal’s body and can last for several months. The common ingredient in flea and tick collars is usually Pyrethrin but some of them also contain insect growth regulators that help to reduce flea populations.
Apart from collars and spray, there are several Dips available in the market for the control of fleas and ticks. A dip is a concentrated liquid which usually contains Pyrethrin. These dips can be diluted with water and can be applied on the pets with a sponge or poured over the body. These products should never be used on very young animals or on nursing or pregnant animals. Dips are highly concentrated, so a lot of care has to be taken while using this product.
Bathing pets with flea and tick control shampoos is another effective way to keep fleas and ticks away. These shampoos help wash away adult fleas, ticks and their eggs. The common ingredient in these products is usually Pyrethrin which kills adult fleas quickly on contact. It is important to ensure that the shampoo is allowed to stay in contact with the skin and coat for at least 10-15 minutes before rinsing thoroughly.
Another option is to use powders. These powders can be dusted over the pet’s entire body and rubbed into the fur and even between the toes. For effective result, powders and sprays should be used after giving bath to the pets. It kills the immature stages of the flea, thereby preventing them from developing and reproducing.
The most effective and popular Flea and Tick Control for Dogs and cats is the use of spot on treatments. This treatment is available in monthly treatment packs and is easy to administer. It works by paralyzing the nervous system of these pests and killing them and by preventing the development of flea eggs and larvae.
As you can see there are many choices available to today’s pet owners. So choose the option that suits you and your pet the best and ensure your pet’s health and happiness.