Spring is just around the corner and that means it's time to start thinking about how we can protect our dogs from flea and ticks.. but what are they?
A flea is a small flightless insect that survive as external parasites of mammals and birds. Fleas live by consuming blood or hematophagy, from their hosts.
Ticks are ectoparasites, living by feeding on the blood of mammals, birds, and sometimes reptiles and amphibians.
Fortunately there are a few things you can do to help prevent your dog from getting fleas or ticks. Let's take a look at some of the ways in which you can help your dog.
Most dog owners walk their dog along paths with trees, weeds and tall grass. These are prime breeding grounds for fleas and ticks. Consider walking your dog where these areas are kept trimmed. It is also essential for your dog to live in a proper environment. To achieve clean, hygienic and well-maintained surroundings for your dog, follow these tips:
Because they are a parasite breeding grounds such as outdoor kennels and and dog houses must be kept clean on a regular basis. Indoors however, consider asking your vet what type of insecticide to use to keep the areas clean where your dog resides to help control larvae, eggs and kill fleas.
Keep your garden and bushes well-maintained.
Fleas and ticks are attracted to bird feeders and birdbaths so place them away from areas your dog uses frequently.
Ensure rubbish and refuse areas are as clean as possible and tightly shut or sealed.
Additionally, vets may advise before the season arrives to use drops, and shampoos which assist the prevention of parasite infestation.
Safety precautions and guidelines:
Ask your vet about their preferred flea and tick products.
If the product is manufactured for one species or another (dog or cat), do not mix and match them as they can be harmful to pets for which they are not intended.
Read all of the instruction and follow them to the letter (it.e. weight of animal and frequency of use)
If your dog is old, lactating, pregnant or sick, discuss any specifics of the treatment with your vet.
When using the product for the first time be sure to watch your pet closely incase of any side effects.
For households with more than one pet, when applicable, use flea and tick products on every animal. While the product dries, try to keep pets separated until the product has dried.
Separation negates the opportunity for them to groom each other while the product is setting.
There are also natural products available to treat fleas and ticks should you not wish to use products, please ask your vet advice on these.
And that's it, both you and your dog can enjoy the beautiful weather (fingers crossed) this spring and summer with just a little bit of planning and prevention.
* Should you come across a tick this spring or summer, get yourself a handy tick remover which can help you easily remove the tick without having to consult a vet. Visit https://www.boxesbybuddy.co.uk/kadi-s-korner-1 to find out more.