Fleas, Ticks & Mosquitos...Not a Pet's Best Friend!
by Lee Chambers
One of the only downsides to warm weather is the return of parasites that harm our pets. While we may want them to enjoy lots of time in the sun, there are some tips to keep in mind to ward off these unwelcome “hitchhikers.”
While there are no tick repellants, you can prevent fleas with any number of products, and your veterinarian is a good source for information. Flea collars are a popular choice, and Seresto collars are often recommended. You can purchase them at Dakin's Springfield Adoption Center. Other popular flea preventives include Advantage, Frontline and Revolution. Be sure that dog products are used on dogs only, cat products on cats only. A dog product used on a cat can be toxic.
Are these products poisonous for animals? They’re toxic to fleas/ticks but most animals are fine with it. All the same, check your pet for skin reaction, and if that happens, discontinue use and consult your veterinarian. Read instructions carefully about how to apply to your pet.
Dogs and outdoor cats should be checked regularly for ticks. If you discover one, you need to act calmly and quickly to remove it, as they can begin to spread disease into your pet's bloodstream within 24 hours. Check out this web page from Pet MD that features a helpful “how-to” video about tick removal: https://bit.ly/2vonUvb
Mosquitos & Heartworm
Are mosquitos dangerous to pets? Some carry heartworm, which is very serious for dogs or cats. It’s expensive to treat and is very important to prevent. All dog breeds are equally susceptible to heartworm, but those who are outside a lot carry a higher risk. Cats do not acquire heartworm as often as dogs because heartworms do not thrive as well inside their bodies, but even an all-indoors cat can be at risk if an infected mosquito enters the house. This is another important topic to discuss with your veterinarian.
Be mindful of these pesky parasites, but grab every chance you can to enjoy your pet this spring and summer. Stay happy and stay healthy!