Fleas and Flea Control
Wednesday, 14 April 2010 15:10
- Can I use both Frontline and Advantage on my cat? Yes, you can. Frontline is the only really good safe tick product for cats on the market right now, but our experience with it for flea control is... well... underwhelming. Advantage and Advantage Multi and Revolution we have found to be wonderful flea control products, but unfortunately have no effect on those nasty ticks. It costs more to treat using both products, but it works better and is safe and effective. There is also a new Frontline product on the market called Frontline Tritak, which has a new ingredient for faster knock-down and quicker kill of fleas, and we are carrying it.
- I have applied an over the counter flea product. My cat is having trouble walking and is acting funny (tremoring/seizuring/just not acting "right"). What should I do? This is very serious. Call us or an emergency facility if we are not open. Your cat needs to be seen by a doctor right away to assess how bad of a problem this is and begin proper treatment immediately. At the very least, wash off the flea product, especially if it is fresh. Your cat needs to be seen ASAP.
- My cat doesn't go outside. Does he still need flea control? Maybe. Just because your cat doesn't go outside doesn't mean a few fleas can't hitchhike inside to him on your pant legs. Or maybe he darted out the door the other day "just for a second"... that's all it takes. One pregnant flea, some cat blood, next thing you know you have a serious flea issue. Regular Advantage is an over the counter product now as of last March, so safe effective flea control is very available here and anywhere pet products are sold. We do not recommend the use of pyrethrins or permethrins on cats! Some of the prescription flea controls (Advantage Multi and Revolution, for instance) also prevent feline heartworm disease and help to keep down GI parasitism when used monthly... oh and they are very effective for fleas too.
- What are some steps I can take for flea control at my house? This can be a very involved question, but the basics are this: if you do not have an infestation, or have only a light infestation, you can simply keep Advantage or Advantage Multi on your cat. When the fleas hop on to feed, they will be killed. No flea eggs, eventually no more fleas. With a heavier infestation, frequent vaccuming (dispose of the vacuum bag or empty the canister as flea eggs and larvae collect there and continue to develop and re-infest your home), use of a safe and effective topical flea control such as Advantage products, Revolution, etc can be used. Borax powder can be beaten into carpets and lined behind baseboards to abrade and dessicate the larvae so that they do not develop. Area treatments can be sprayed around baseboards, between cushions, under couches, etc. "Bombs" are really only useful to knock down overwhelming infestations and should be used in addition to all of the above treatments. When all else fails, you can always call in a professional exterminator! Frontline and Advantage products are available from your local veterinarian (often the drug companies have free-dose deals going on though the vets) or even through Pet Smart. Please don't use Hartz or other cheap pyrethrin products since they don't work well at all on fleas anymore (they are cheap for a reason) and will often make your cat sick (or kill the cat).