How does my dog get fleas and ticks?

Dogs get fleas and ticks from being exposed to them. These parasites usually come from outdoor environments and are spread by wildlife. Especially fleas can infest your house in a very short period of time. Ticks carry several diseases, with Ehrlichiosis being the most common one in Kansas.

Dr. Larry Nieman
Neighborhood Vets Mobile Care

Can fleas and ticks spread from my dog to my home and family?

Yes, ticks can transmit diseases to humans as well as dogs. Fleas will infest your home. An adult flea only gets on your pet to take a blood meal. After that, the flea lays 500 eggs which fall off your pet into your carpets and upholstery. This infests your home, and the life stage of the fleas is almost impossible to get rid of.

Can my dogs get fleas and ticks if they are primarily an indoor dog?

If dogs live primarily indoors, the incidence of getting fleas and ticks is much lower due to less exposure. However, they can still get fleas and ticks when they go outside.

What health problems can fleas and ticks cause my dog?

Ticks spread blood-borne diseases when they attach to your dog. Fleas take blood and can cause disease in your dogs and cats.

How effective are flea and tick medications?

Prescription flea and tick medications are very effective. They are unconditionally guaranteed, easy to give, and will save you a great deal of trouble.

What is the difference between over-the-counter and prescription flea and tick medications?

Over-the-counter products have been around for many years. Some of them used to be prescription products. However, we have found them to be less effective on patients with flea infestations and ticks. If you're serious about preventing fleas and ticks, we recommend working with your veterinarian.

What different types of flea and tick preventive treatments are there?

There are topical and oral treatments. You can give a tablet that will prevent fleas and ticks for three months or apply a topical on a monthly basis. There are also products that prevent fleas, ticks, heartworms, and internal parasites.

What will my veterinarian recommend for flea and tick treatment?

It depends on the individual veterinarian's practice and experience in your area. In our practice, we recommend Revecto for fleas and ticks.

How can I identify fleas on my dog?

Look deep in their hair coat and part the hair. Fleas look like black pepper next to the skin, especially right above his tail. If you don't see anything, then turn him over and look underneath for little bugs running around.

How can I identify ticks on my dog?

Ticks are pretty obvious when you see them. They attach to your dog and are not easily removed. In cats, they commonly remove the ticks from themselves.

What should I do if I see fleas or ticks on my dog?

You should consult your veterinarian. He'll know what's the best for you to do in the current environment and he knows your pet and you. If you need help, just give us a call or tap that request appointment button on your screen.

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 Facebook, Instagram

Dog Fleas and Ticks - FAQs 1

Dr. Larry Nieman
Neighborhood Vets Mobile Care

What diseases are associated with fleas and ticks?

Fleas can transmit some specific diseases, but ticks are the main ones that transmit tick-borne diseases. Here in Kansas, we see ehrlichiosis pretty commonly but also anaplasmosis. The range of Lyme disease is coming out of the East Coast and into the central part of the United States, so we see that as well.

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

There are prescription products available to take care of fleas and ticks. It used to be we had to treat the environment and treat the pet repeatedly. Now, there are systemic treatments that take care of both fleas and ticks. They're commonly topical, so medication is put on the skin. But there are also oral medications that prevent fleas and ticks. The way they work is that they kill these fleas and ticks before they're able to bite your pet, which is when the disease gets transmitted.

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

Fleas have been around for centuries, and they caused the Black Plague back in the early stages of human history, resulting in the loss of most of the worldwide population. Fleas have several life stages. The adult flea, once it takes a blood meal, lays five hundred eggs. Those eggs fall off of your pet into carpets and upholstery and develop into larvae. The larva then pupate, become pupa and those pupa can exist for hundreds of years before the environment is just right for them to hatch out. Fleas can infest your home in a short period of time.

Are flea and tick treatments painful?

No, the chewable products are guaranteed palatable, so your pet will eat them, and the topical products are just applied to the skin. In most cases, there's no reaction whatsoever.

What are the risks of treatment?

Everything we do in veterinary medicine, every prescription that we prescribe has side effects. However, in my personal experience, these side effects are rare.

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

Yes, all kinds of things are promoted if you just do a Google search. However, my personal experience is that they're ineffective. If you use them in an environment where there is no problem, it appears that they work but if you have a problem and you try them, you'll be disappointed.

How do I get rid of fleas and ticks in our home?

Getting rid of them in your environment is something you need to refer to an exterminator, which is a little bit beyond the scope of my practice. So seek out a good exterminator who guarantees his work.

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 Facebook, Instagram