Fleas and Ticks

The war against fleas and ticks can be fought with several different products. The Animal Image requests that all animals be on some type of flea preventative during the spring and summer months. Flea collars generally are very weak at providing any protection of flea infestations and are not recommended. Instead, use a professional product which has been thoroughly researched and developed before coming onto the mass market. Anything that can be purchased at a vet clinic is superior to something purchased at a grocery store.

It is vitally important to treat the house as well as treat the animal. If there is even one flea on your pet, there are numerous fleas in your home. Fleas that are on your pet are just the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. Vigorous actions in home flea removal will result in much easier flea removal from your dog or cat. I tell my customers to launder everything you can such as bedspreads, throw rugs, blankets on couches, pet bedding, etc. Fleas won’t survive the washer and dryer, so this will jump start the process. You can buy flea foggers at local pet supply stores, but everything that breathes MUST be out of the house before using. Also, remove your pet’s food and water dishes and put them outside prior to setting off the foggers so they won’t be eating or drinking any residue left over. Vacuum well and throw away the vacuum bag or empty the canister outside immediately after using. Many times this whole process needs repeating every few weeks to ensure complete flea removal. If you do everything at once, you will persevere.

Generally, people use a product which is applied between the shoulder blades of the dog or cat. Please make sure the product is labeled specifically for either dog or cat usage. If you’ve found that fleas are becoming immune to a product that you’ve used in the past, you are not imagining things. This can sometimes happen, so the key is to use the newest item which will have different ingredients in it. Right now, the newest is called Vectra, which is currently only available through a vet clinic. It’s fast acting and still provides the 30 day protection, so it needs to be applied once per month.

Another quick acting defense against fleas is a pill called Capstar. It is for immediate flea removal. This starts to work within 30-60 minutes and will kill only the fleas on the animal at the current time. It is NOT a monthly protection. Therefore, it’s benefits are such that you can give your pet the Capstar, which is purchased at the vet, and within hours all fleas will have fallen off. However, putting a pet back into an environment that has fleas will only undo the magic that Capstar did. This is best used when you need to take your pet out of your home while it’s being fogged. Upon returning to your home, both your pet and the home will have no fleas. Another plus with Capstar is that it can be used in conjunction with Frontline and other monthly products. Please talk to your vet about usage before administering anything to an animal.

The Animal Image requires that if you are already aware that your pet has fleas, you MUST give your pet a Capstar pill before coming to the grooming appointment. Any fleas found on customer’s pets will result in an extra surcharge to the grooming price.