Safe, Effective Parasite Prevention & Treatment for Pet Flea & Tick Infestations
Fleas and ticks are the most common parasites to plague our domestic pets. The professionals at Carriage Hills Animal Hospital develop a prevention plan for your pet at each wellness visit, addressing any concerns of parasite infestations. If, in spite of all efforts, your pet does get fleas or tick bites, our team is prepared to help you with an appropriate and effective strategy.
Where Do Fleas & Ticks Come From?
Typically, fleas are transmitted by an infested animal. A flea-infested stray dog or cat, even wildlife, can enter your yard and drop flea eggs in your lawn, incubating them until adulthood when they jump on your pet.
Ticks live in most every environment, but they are most often found in tall grass and wooded areas. They crawl up low shrubs or grass, roughly 18 to 24 inches off the ground, and wait for a host to walk by. When you or your pet brushes against them they simply drop off onto our clothes or pets and clamp on to feed. Ticks are resilient—they can live a year or more without feeding.
Fleas & Ticks Make Pets Sick
These parasites are more than just annoying. They can make your pets sick. Since fleas suck blood, pets can become anemic or even die with heavy infestations. Puppies are most susceptible to getting sick this way.
A very common problem in dogs and cats is flea allergy dermatitis. Your pet may only have a few fleas to cause this problem. Affected pets will bite and scratch themselves excessively.
Tick bites can transmit more than a dozen diseases to our pets. These include Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, and more. Many of these diseases can kill pets.
Some diseases can be transmitted from pets to people and these are called zoonotic diseases. Some zoonotic diseases are quite familiar to us, such as rabies, but others may surprise you.
Cat scratch fever, Lyme disease, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever are all examples of zoonotic diseases that originate with fleas and ticks. Cat scratch fever is a bacterial disease spread to cats by fleas, then transmitted to humans through a cat scratch or bite. Both Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease are spread to people indirectly, through a bite from a tick that was carried by their dog or cat.
The CDC provides information about diseases your pet can transmit to you with tips on how to keep yourself, your family, and your pets healthy. Find additional information about zoonotic diseases in Diseases from Animals: A Primer.
How We Can Help
There are many products on the market that claim to prevent or treat flea and tick infestations. Many over-the-counter products are ineffective and some are even toxic. Don’t waste time and money on these products.
We discuss parasite prevention and treatment with you at every wellness visit, making recommendations for high quality and effective products. If you experience any problems in between visits, simply call us to discuss an appropriate game plan.
East Montgomery pet owners may prefer the convenience of our Vaughn Road Veterinary Clinic for prescription medications and products related to parasite prevention.
- Read more about pets and parasites.
- Learn how Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever can affect your dog’s health.
- We strongly recommend Revolution, a product that protects cats from fleas, heartworm, ear mites, and more. Learn the truth about heartworms in cats and understand how HARD (Heartworm Associated Respiratory Disease) can harm your feline companion.