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As the warmer months are approaching, it’s important to start protecting your pet and home from fleas and ticks. Fleas live outdoors and hitchhike their way inside on pets or people. Fleas live in moist, shady areas, including lawn thatch, mulch, leaf litter, woodpiles, crawl spaces, and under porches or decks. Fleas also thrive on common wildlife such as squirrels, rabbits, groundhogs, and opossums that can spread fleas to your pet.
The easiest and most effective way to prevent fleas and ticks is by using a monthly flea and tick preventative. However, fleas thrive in warm environments, and they may lay dormant in your house; fleas and their eggs can be commonly found in carpeting, bedding, and furniture. If a flea infestation has already occurred in your house, preventives would be needed year-round.
To avoid a flea infestation, your pet must be on flea preventatives and be given the preventative consistently for six consecutive months. Many medications are in a combined form with the monthly heartworm medication. Not only is this convenient, but it reduces the cost of two medications! Although fleas are more prevalent in summer months, they can survive year-round in a home.
Ticks can transmit serious diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis, and Anaplasmosis. Many of these diseases have symptoms that are vague and/or mild until the disease has progressed. Many flea and tick preventatives starts killing ticks upon contact and will kill all four North American species of ticks (Deer tick, Brown dog tick, American dog tick and the Lone Star tick).
Heartworm disease is another dangerous condition to dogs and cats; although heartworm disease is preventable, it can be potentially fatal. With this disease, parasites attach themselves to the heart, and can cause symptoms such as persistent cough, fatigue, reduced appetite, and weight loss. We can help you protect your pet from heartworm disease with daily or monthly preventatives, including tablets and chewables, topicals, and a six-month injectable product available only for dogs. All of these methods are extremely effective, and when administered properly on a timely schedule, heartworm infection can be completely prevented. Our veterinarians recommend ProHeart, a six month injectable treatment that will protect your pet from heartworm disease.
For more information about protecting your pet from fleas, ticks, and heartworm this season, call us today to speak with one of our staff members – we are here to help!