ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLEA

Author : thomousmiller thomous | Published On : 08 Jul 2024

HEALTH PROBLEMS CAUSED BY FLEAS

ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLEA

Fleas tend to be more active during the warmer months. However, due to home heating in winter and the warm climate in parts of Australia, fleas can be a problem year-round. Fleas can cause significant issues for both you and your pets. Flea bites irritate your pet, leading to constant scratching and biting. Fleas can also bite household members, causing irritation and sometimes severe skin reactions. Cats and dogs can develop ongoing allergies to flea bites, known as flea allergy dermatitis (FAD), which is a common cause of the dreaded “summer itch” experienced by many pets, especially in spring and summer, often requiring a vet visit for treatment. Heavy flea infestations can lead to other serious problems, including anaemia in young or sick dogs.

UNDERSTANDING THE FLEA LIFE-CYCLE AND INTEGRATED FLEA-CONTROL STRATEGIES

flea life cycle

Understanding the flea life cycle is crucial for planning a successful flea control strategy tailored to your and your pet's lifestyle. An effective flea control program should include both a flea adulticide to eliminate fleas currently on your pet and an insect growth regulator (IGR) to target other stages of the flea, such as eggs and larvae, in your pet's environment (e.g., pet bedding, carpets, floorboard cracks, lounges, family beds, cars, grass, garden). Using both an adulticide and an IGR provides an excellent integrated flea control strategy.

The pupal stage last for a week to ten days under normal conditions of temperature and humidity.

A fully developed adult flea, nestled inside its pupa, remains dormant until conditions favor its emergence. This dormant state can persist for several months, allowing the flea to survive in stasis. Factors like temperature drops or a vacant house can prolong this period. However, when stimulated by vibrations, shadows, or other cues, fleas emerge in large numbers, urgently seeking a blood meal from both pets and household members. Despite efforts such as daily vacuuming, pet bathing/spraying, and rug treatments, new fleas continuously emerge from the environment, perpetuating the infestation cycle. This explains why a flea outbreak can suddenly manifest when moving to a new home or during the first warm spell of spring, even if few or no fleas were observed on pets in preceding days or weeks.

DON’T FORGET:

Your flea control strategy must incorporate both an adulticide and an insect growth regulator (IGR) to effectively eliminate all stages of the flea lifecycle. Treat all pets in the household simultaneously for fleas to prevent reinfestation. Flea control should be maintained year-round to prevent outbreaks.

Be cautious as some products intended for dogs can be toxic to cats. Always read the label carefully and store pet products in their original packaging. Be mindful of visiting pets that could introduce fleas into your home, and be aware that your pets can pick up fleas when visiting other homes or kennels.

Approximately 95% of the flea population exists in your pet’s environment, necessitating thorough management of the surroundings. Regular vacuuming of carpets and floorboards, as well as washing your pet’s bedding, will physically remove many immature fleas. Flea bombs or foggers containing insecticides and IGRs can control eggs, larvae, and pupae for up to 12 months. Outdoors, apply yard sprays around kennels, under trees, stairs, or other favored areas where your pet spends time.

It's crucial to note that fleas, like other pests, can develop resistance to products over time. If you suspect resistance issues with a product you've used for years, seek advice from our knowledgeable staff to select an alternative that suits your needs.

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST FLEA CONTROL PRODUCTS FOR YOUR PET

We can assist you in selecting the flea products that best suit you, your pets, and their lifestyle, offering an integrated flea control strategy that targets every stage of the flea life cycle—from eggs and larvae to pupae and adult fleas.

Our inventory includes a diverse range of flea products such as shampoos, powders, collars, sprays, topical spot-ons, oral tablets, and comprehensive solutions protecting against both internal and external parasites.