Spring Lodge Veterinary Group Flea Control Protocol 2012

At Spring Lodge over the past few months we have been seeing many animals suffering from fleas and have been looking into why this is and how we can best advise owners on the control of these parasites. 

It is firstly important to remember that once a pet has entered the house with just a single flea on it an infestation will start and can take 3 – 5 months to bring under control.

There are two stages to flea control – treating the animal and treating the environment.

 The Animal

For the treatment and/or prevention of a flea infestation a suitable ‘spot-on’ treatment as advised by your veterinary surgery should be applied every 4 weeks making sure contact is made with the skin when applying.  (Many flea products can advise treating the pet evey 6 weeks but in the case of an infestation rather than provention this is not sufficient.)

 Ensure the flea treatment is applied correctly – the whole pipette, onto the skin (not the fur) in one place on the animal.  If you are unsure about how to apply the treatment please ask for a complimentary appointment with our veterinary nurses.

Ensure you have the correct size pipette for the animal – check the weight of the animal before applying.  (For example, do not use half a large dog pipette on a small animal.)

Do not bathe or allow the animal into water for 48hrs post application.

All animals within the household must be treated along the same guidelines even if they are totally indoor animals.

Make sure the product is stored according to the correct guidelines – not next to an oven or hot appliance.

 The Environment

 The home MUST be treated with Indorex, Acclaim or Staykill spray.  This MUST be done every year even if there are no fleas seen and the animals are being treated with a spot-on treatment.  In the case of an infestation or a multi animal household every six months is advised.

 The entire house must be treated including:

  •  Carpets
  • Hard flooring
  • Laminate flooring
  • Skirting boards
  • Soft furnishings
  • Pet bedding
  • Carry baskets, cages and crates
  • Car

 Flea eggs are extremely sticky and can be walked around the house by the owner, even into the rooms the animals are not allowed in.

When flea larvae develop into pupae nothing will kill them (even household spray) and they can lay dormant in the environment for up to a year like this.  Therefore there is potential at anytime for a flea to hatch out.  To encourage them to hatch and be killed by the household spray/flea treatment, vacuum the house daily and create a humid environment (e.g dry wet washing on the radiators).

 Finally, wash all pet bedding at 60oC.

 Remember that prevention is better than trying to deal with an infestation.  Please conatct our surgery for a complimentary appointment with the veterinary nurse with all purchases of flea products if you need further advice.