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How Do I Get Rid of Pet Fleas?

Only pet owners can understand the sheer joy dogs, cats, hamsters, and any other animal for that matter, can bring into your life; always having a smiling face to greet you when you come home from a hard day’s work. All that love certainly comes at a price as pet ownership can sometimes get expensive. One area that can be costly is if your animal gets inhabited by fleas. Those little black pests can be quite annoying. Fortunately for you and your pet, fleas don’t need to be a “life sentence.”

Are Fleas A Year-Round Problem Or Do They Strike Seasonally?

Fleas are most commonly found on animals in the summer months. They tend to prefer temperatures between 65-80 degrees and/or when the humidity is around 75-80 percent. Depending on where you live, these temperatures and humidity levels can occur quite often further exacerbating the flea problem.

What Exactly Are These Fleas And What Do They Do To My Pet?

Fleas are small dark brown insects. Fleas do not have wings and so they cannot fly but they can certainly jump, sometimes quite impressively, thanks to their strong back legs. Once they jump on to your animal, the bite they inflict can cause itching. For animals with sensitive skin or that are flea-allergic, the itching can be severe and even lead to hair loss, inflammation, and more serious skin infections.

How Do I Tell If My Pet Has Flea Problem?

Although they can sometimes be hard to see due to their small size, fleas are far from invisible. Sometimes the most obvious way to tell if your pet has a flea problem is if you can see them. If you find your pet is scratching and being more squirrely than usual, this can also be an indicator. Fleas also don’t like the light and so they tend to stay near the belly and inner thigh of your pet.

What Exactly Is “Flea Dirt”?

Most commonly known as ‘flea dirt’, flea feces is often left behind on an infected animal. These dark specs of feces mixed with digested blood are a gross by product of a flea infestation. Also a helpful tip in detecting fleas, if you see these dark flakes on your pet, take them off and place them on a damp paper towel. If after a few minutes the flakes start to spread out like a blood stain, it’s a good chance your pet has fleas.

What Are My Options For Treating Fleas?

Depending on the type of pet you have, there are a number of treatment options available at different price points. Perhaps the biggest breakthrough in flea treatment over the last few years is the number of prescription treatments that have become available. Talk to your vet to see which one is right for your pet.

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