What are fleas and ticks?

Fleas and ticks are parasites, and they come from the environment, sometimes from wildlife. They should be prevented because they cause disease.

Dr. Larry Nieman
Neighborhood Vets Mobile Care

How do fleas and ticks impact the health and wellbeing of my cat?

For your kitty, fleas and ticks can transmit disease just like in your dog. There's a pretty long list of diseases, and we see cases of feline infectious anemia here in Kansas City that come from fleas. I saw one just a few weeks ago. So the most important part is that you need to prevent these.

How do cats get fleas and ticks?

They get fleas and ticks from other animals and the environment, especially ticks. Ticks come from the environment, and they usually get there from wildlife.

Why is the prevention of fleas and ticks so important?

Besides causing your animals' disease, the most important thing is that they can infect your environment, and fleas are the main culprit because they get in your home, and when they do, they're really hard to get rid of.

How can a veterinarian help with flea and tick prevention?

It's pretty simple. He'll just recommend a prescription product for your cats, and you can apply it topically. There are also oral medications that will prevent both fleas and ticks.

What are some signs and symptoms of a flea and tick infestation in your cat?

Your kitty is meticulous about his grooming, so you'll see them biting at their skin and trying to get ahold of the fleas and ticks to get them off of themselves.

What do fleas and ticks look like?

That's a great question. If you haven't seen one, you probably should search for fleas and ticks, and you'll see them, but they're tiny, especially in the beginning. Ticks get bigger as they get engorged with blood from your pet, but they're just little bugs that run around on your cat.

What are some possible diseases that can be transmitted by fleas and ticks?

The list is long. There are actually eight different diseases that can occur in your cat, from fleas and ticks: Ehrlichia, rickettsia, feline infectious anemia, and borreliosis. Those are the ones that come to the top of my mind, but there's a whole list. There are eight of them.

What are the most effective flea and tick treatments for cats?

The only preventatives that are effective in controlling them on your pets and in your environment are prescription products. You just need to talk to your veterinarian, and they will fix you up with whatever they're recommending because there's a lot, and all of them work. They'll tell you which ones are the best for the area where you live.

What should I do if I find fleas or ticks on my cat?

If you can remove them, that's great, but for sure, you just need to see your veterinarian and get on a preventive maintenance program.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (913) 423-8375, or you can email us at [email protected]. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can. Don't forget to follow us on social media https://www.facebook.com/NeighborhoodVets, https://www.instagram.com/neighborhoodvets

Cat Fleas & Ticks - FAQs

Dr. Larry Nieman
Neighborhood Vets Mobile Care

What diseases are associated with fleas and ticks?

There's a list of about eight that I'm familiar with, but anaplasmosis, Ehrlichiosis, Lyme disease, rickettsioses, feline infectious anemia, borreliosis, and the list goes on. If you're really interested in specific diseases, you can always search that out, but the bottom line is that they come from fleas and ticks, and flea and tick prevention is really becoming very scientific, and prescription products are very effective.

What are the treatments associated with those diseases?

Most of the diseases that come from fleas and ticks are treated with antibiotics and some with antiparasitic drugs. The bottom line is that, especially with fleas, they're so bad, but ticks here in Kansas transmit a lot of diseases. Prevention is much better than a cure.

If my cat is diagnosed with fleas and ticks, what is the treatment to get rid of them?

Fleas and ticks are easily preventable with prescription products. There are no specific non-prescription products that I'm familiar with that work effectively. In fact, I've seen them all fail. There are many available to you, and all you have to do is talk to your veterinarian, and he'll definitely help you out.

What is the flea life cycle, and why is it important to know this for treatment?

The most important thing about fleas is that they're very hard to control. Once they get in your home, it's really bad. They come in three stages, and when an adult flea bites your dog or cat, it will lay somewhere in the neighborhood of 500 eggs a day. Those eggs turn into a form called the pupa, and they fall off of your dog or cat and go into your carpets and upholstery, and they're almost impossible to get rid of. You really have to use a professional to resolve fleas in your home.

Are flea and tick treatments painful?

No, they don't hurt at all. Many of them are oral chewable tablets. For some of them, you only have to give every three months. There are also topicals because your kitties usually don't take things orally so well.

Are there natural or over-the-counter treatments for fleas and ticks?

No, I think I already answered that one, but not in my experience.

Why is it important to treat my cat for fleas and ticks early?

Like I said before, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, but in the case of fleas and ticks, it's more like a ton of cure.

How do I get rid of fleas and ticks in the environment?

You just need to enlist a professional and tell them what kind of problem you have, and they'll guarantee they will get rid of them. But the bottom line is that if you don't control them on the animals, you'll never get them out of your environment.

What common flea pesticides are toxic to cats?

Cats are sensitive to chemicals, but if you are using a prescription product made for cats, you don't really have any worries.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (913) 423-8375, or you can email us at [email protected]. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can. Don't forget to follow us on social media https://www.facebook.com/NeighborhoodVets, https://www.instagram.com/neighborhoodvets

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