Spring usually is flea season. The warmer weather combined with increased humidity leads to a population explosion. However, as we are coming to the end of summer, your pets still can get fleas and so can your house.
Fleas are designed to jump great distances which is how they can transmit easily between pets. They need to suck blood from a mammal to reproduce, such as cats and dogs.
An adult flea can lay up to 40 eggs/day. The eggs will fall off and infest the region where you pet lays and sleeps. The eggs hatch into larvae within a few days and then they become pupae. The pupae are in a cocoon that is indestructible and can remain like this for months. The pupae are normally located in dark crevices and deep within your carpet. The pupae hatch when they sense a host nearby which is your warm pet.
Upon hatching, the juvenile flea jumps onto your pet and starts feeding. They can start laying eggs within 24-48 hours which is how you can have a flea infestation develop very quickly!
How Do I know If my pet has fleas?
Very rarely will you see live fleas on your pet and if you do, it can indicate a very heavy infestation in your environment. What we advise it to use a flea comb and brush your pets coat. You are looking for tiny black specks that resemble dirt. If you place them on a damp tissue, it will turn a red colour, which is digested blood. This indicates your pet has fleas.
Why are fleas an issue for my pets?
Fleas can cause a few issues. A heavy flea burden can lead to anaemia due to the amount of blood they suck from your pet. They can also infest your pet with flea tapeworm. Lastly, some pets are highly allergic to fleas and it can only take the bite of one to a few fleas, to make your pet intensely itchy for weeks. Cats typically overgroom when they have fleas due to being itchy so you may not see any flea dirt on combing your cat.
Flea Treatment and Prevention
They are various treatments available to treat fleas on your pets. There are oral tablets or top spots. It is important to discuss this with the team at Veterinary Happiness to ensure you give the best product for your pet.
It is very important to treat every animal in the household. Sometimes people don’t treat their cat and just treat the dogs but the cat will still be infested with fleas and continue breeding them.
It is also very important to treat your environment such as carpets, bedding and kennels where the majority of the eggs, larvae and pupae are located.
We advise that you keep your pets on flea prevention all year round here in South East Queensland due to our warm and humid climate which is perfect weather for fleas to breed.
If your pet has fleas, please ensure you are treating every animal in the household for 12 months as they will keep breeding the fleas.
Remember to worm your pet for flea tapeworm if you notice your pet has fleas.
Pets can be allergic to fleas and it makes them very itchy and miserable which is why we advise you keep your pet flea free.
Always check that the flea prevention you are using is safe for cats and don’t use dog flea prevention on cats as it can poison your cat.
If you notice fleas on your pet, call us on 3206 7911 or come and talk to one of our friendly nurses who can explain how best to treat your pet and the household to eradicate the fleas.