How to Handle a Flea Infestation
It’s been the warmest and wettest winter ever this year; we actually wore shorts during the holidays. While it’s a nice break from bitter cold weather, fleas and ticks thrive on this warm and wet environment, which means terrible flea infestations.
What if your dog’s flea control is no longing killing fleas or ticks? What if you have an entire flea infestation on your hands? You discover natural products, such as cedar oil, are no longer working. Well, I recently experienced this, so allow me to share my thoughts and tips about flea infestations with you.
Topical Flea Control Products Don’t Work
Topical flea control products are liquids applied onto your dog’s coat. Many years ago, they were extremely effective even in flea-laden areas, such as south Louisiana. I don’t think topical flea products are as effective anymore. I don’t blame the manufacturers for it though. I think fleas have evolved, which is just plain scary.
Both of our dogs wear Frontline Plus every 30 days (per manufacturer’s directions) and our Rottweiler still has fleas. He has so many fleas that flea dirt (flea droppings) started developing under his fur. Now, Frontline does take a few hours to kill fleas that jump on your dog, but I literally pulled 10 fleas off my Rottie in one sitting. Then, at least two fleas every day after that with the help of my flea comb. We had a problem.
When searching for a new topical flea control product, the reviews were terrible. Most pet owners complained of live fleas present despite the application of topical flea control. Now I know it takes flea control a couple of hours to kill fleas, but if there’s flea dirt, then these products are just not cutting it.
Flea Control Products That Do Work
While doing research, I was pleasantly surprised at the new products claiming to keep dogs pest-free. Most are oral medications purchased through your veterinarian and are highly effective.
While we all think flea collars went out with the hula hoop, there’s a new flea collar in town and it works extremely well. I tried Seresto’s flea and tick collar on our Rottweiler. Within a couple of days, he was flea free. While we all want instant gratification, it takes a few days of constant wear for maximum effectiveness. Also, this flea collar can last up to eight months, so I would highly recommend giving it a try. Oh, and you can order it online for best prices or at your local pet store.
Don’t Forget to Treat Your Yard
Our yard was the culprit for our flea infestation. We’ve recently had an influx of stray cats running through our neighborhood. Stray cats coupled with a warm and wet winter and you’ve got yourself fleas! For the longest time, my go-to product was cedar oil, but it was useless with our flea explosion. So, I went old-school and purchased Vet-Kem products. Vet-Kem yard spray and foggers have proven to work over the last three decades, and it costs half the price of pest control products from local pet or home improvement stores. While I hate using chemicals, I had no choice. Our dogs were miserable.
Don’t forget to re-spray 10-14 days after your initial yard and home spray. I’m not convinced pest control products kill flea eggs–we learned this lesson exactly 14 days later. Spray and spray again 10 days later!
You can get through this, but you need flea products that work!