Now that the warmer weather is here, we tend to see fleas and ticks appear. It is very frustrating when you cat has a flea or tick infestation. Fleas are more than a nuisance, they can lead to skin infections and other health issues. Although we are not experts in this subject, we are happy to share some advice on getting rid of fleas on cats.
The most important thing to know is that in order to treat fleas it requires a three-step process, otherwise they will continue to hatch and spread. You must do all three steps at the same time.
Step 1: Flea Bath: (Shampoo and flea comb): Give your cat a bath to kill live fleas. Purchase a special “Flea Shampoo for Cats” from your local pet shop or online. After the bath use a specific flea comb with fine, tiny bristles to comb out the fleas and any eggs. If your cat is heavily infested, check the ears you may need to use special ear drops available from your local pet shop.
Step 2: Apply a treatment to prevent re-infestation. Depending on your personal preference, there are products available online or in your local pet shop, such as Frontline/Advantage that are drops to apply on the skin at the shoulder blades, this prevents fleas or ticks from biting your cat for about a month. There are also some natural treatments available, but they may not always be as effective. Whatever you choose, be SURE to only use products safe for CATS. There are different topical treatment formulas for cats versus dogs, so be sure to read labels carefully.
Step 3: Treat your Home: Treat your home. This is a critical step to perform. If you have carpets, pet bedding, furniture, there are products at your local pet store to kill fleas in your home. Vacuum thoroughly and empty the vacuum cleaner carefully. If you leave the fleas or eggs in your vacuum cleaner, they will simply crawl out and be back in your home in no time. Be sure to follow instructions on the products to treat your home carefully. Never use any commercial pesticides or foggers that may leave a residue, always read labels to look for warnings or instructions if they are safe for pets.
A Final Tip…
During the Spring and Summer months especially, inspect your kitty regularly. Look for signs of scratching, itching biting/chewing themselves. Look for places such as behind or in ears, under arms, under legs or in their private region where fleas and ticks often hide. If you see little brown or black “dots” in the fur, it may be the flea poop, a sure sign that your kitty has fleas.
You should also consult with your veterinarian for further advice. Annual vet check-ups are important, so speak with your vet about other treatments for heartworm, depending on where you live and what pests may be prevalent in your region.