Parasite Prevention At Your Columbus Veterinarian
Parasites are one of the most common health problems that dogs and cats face. The most common parasites are fleas and ticks while others include intestinal parasites like roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms, whipworms and heartworms.
Intestinal parasites such as tapeworms are carried by fleas, and heartworms are carried by infected mosquitos. Heartworm can be deadly, so it's important to take precautions against mosquitos biting your pets.
How Do You Prevent Parasites?
The first step is awareness and prevention. Preventing fleas and ticks is easier than ridding yourself of an infestation, so taking precautions is the best policy. There are a number of ways to prevent fleas and ticks, and it's best to approach protection and prevention from multiple angles.
The best way to keep fleas and ticks away from your pet is through medication designed to repel them. Flea and tick prevention comes in many forms, including topical treatments such as sprays, powders, shampoos, collars, and oral medications. These medications may act to prevent or repel the fleas and ticks, or by killing them after they make contact.
Topical treatments are effective but not without their side effects and limitations. Animals under six weeks of age or under a certain weight should not be treated with flea and tick medications. Also, some cats and dogs may have an adverse reaction, or may have health issues that make these treatments a poor choice for them. It's best to ask our veterinarian before administering sprays, drops or oral medications.
Dealing With A Current Infestation
If you have already experienced a flea problem, it's important to act fast to get rid of it. Fleas multiply at a rapid rate and the problem gets worse by the day.
Your first step is to treat your pet so that fleas will stop biting and laying eggs on them. You'll also want to thoroughly vacuum your home, taking special care in areas your pet sleeps or spends time. Wash all bedding and dry on high heat. Treat your home with the appropriate pesticide and take all precautions.
Checking Your Pets For Fleas And Ticks
Regularly check for signs of fleas and ticks. If you live in an area that is tick-prone, and if your pet spends time outdoors, you'll need to check for ticks regularly, as they are carriers of diseases for both animals and humans. Check for fleas as well.
Prevent fleas and ticks outside your home by keeping your yard secure against wandering cats and dogs, keeping garbage locked up tight to keep out rodents, etc. and by keeping your yard mowed and free of tall weeds or grasses.
Your Columbus Veterinarian Can Help
If you want to know more about parasite control, or aren't sure which flea and tick treatment is right for your pet, contact Georgesville Road Animal Hospital to schedule an appointment. You can contact us at (614) 272-0162. Our veterinarian can recommend the best flea and tick prevention for your pet.