Fleas

By | Feb 21, 2019

Dogs, cats and other animals are at risk of encountering fleas (and ticks) during the warmer months. Check your pets frequently throughout the summer. Watch for excessive scratching or licking. Avoid walking pets in tall grass. Read more. Flea season, Flea Wiki.

Fleas are not just a nuisance, they also carry diseases and the tapeworm parasite; they can cause flea-bite dermatitis and anemia. Parasites and flea anemia can be especially serious for kittens and elderly cats.

Fleas cause itchy, red bumps that lead to excessive scratching, along with unpleasant conditions such as anemia, dermatitis and tapeworms. Additionally, fleas breed at lightning speed and can quickly grow into a large infestation in a pet owners’ homes.

Warm, wet weather is prime weather for fleas. During late spring and all through summer, most regions experience outbreaks of fleas. However, fleas do not care about the calendar. As long as the area is warm enough (about 60 degrees or warmer) for them to breed, and the adult fleas have a blood meal, they will breed. As long as larvae have sufficient humidity to hatch (50 percent at least), they will hatch.

Because of climate-controlled homes, fleas easily breed inside all year long; if home owners don’t eliminate fleas, flea eggs and flea larvae.

Geography
In most areas of the United States, flea season lasts from March or April through November or December. All the states bordering the Pacific Ocean and nearly all southern states in the U.S. have no seasonal break from fleas and the season lasts yearlong.

Fleas live almost everywhere in the world. Flea season is slightly different country to country, but regions with warm, wet climates have fleas all year.

Prevention/Solution
To prevent flea infestations, treat animals at the very beginning of flea season and be vigilant about vacuuming and general cleaning. This way, fleas won’t have the chance to become established on your pet, in your pet’s bedding or in your carpets. The actual date to begin treatment will vary year to year, depending on temperature and humidity.

Monthly topical flea treatments are better and safer than flea collars or other over-the-counter flea medicines for preventing and controlling flea infestations.

Considerations
There is no such thing as a safe chemical pesticide, but some are less toxic than others. Over-the-counter topical flea medicines are generally more toxic and less effective than those you buy from your veterinarian. Fleas have developed resistance to some chemicals in over-the-counter flea products.

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