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The Importance of Flea and

Tick Control for Dogs Long haired dog being given a topical flea and tick control preventative.

Summer months provide great opportunities to get outdoors with our pets. Unfortunately, more time outdoors also puts our four-legged friends at a greater risk for contracting fleas and ticks. That’s why flea and tick preventatives are crucial.

Whether you live in the heart of the city or miles from civilization, flea and tick preventatives are an essential part of your dog’s health and should be given regularly to ensure unwanted pests. With their warm bodies and soft fur, our dogs provide the perfect flea and tick paradise. Once they take up residence, they can cause multiple health issues such as:

– Discomfort
– Flea allergies
– Hot spots
– Tapeworms
– Ehrlichia
– Skin infections
– Lyme disease
– Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

Not to mention, left unchecked, these pests can begin to infest our homes, which can affect our health, and the health of our families. Administering regular, year-round flea and tick preventatives will make sure you, your home and your pet are well protected.

Preventatives to Consider

When it comes to preventatives, there are several options to choose from. Always consult with your veterinarian to find out which method is best for your pooch.

Oral Preventatives:

These are typically chewables or pills prescribed by a veterinarian. They contain different active ingredients that target fleas and ticks. Unlike topical treatments, oral medications are easier to administer and often come in flavors that make them more appealing to pets. Studies have shown this preventative option is extremely effective at killing fleas and ticks.

Topical Treatments:

These are liquid solutions that are applied to your dog’s skin, usually between their shoulder blades. There are also shampoos, sprays and powders that can be purchased. Once these products are absorbed through the skin, the medication then circulates through the bloodstream to protect against and kill fleas and ticks. Most topical treatments require a monthly dosing schedule. Treatments may also vary depending on whether your dog spends more time indoors or outdoors.

Collars:

A great alternative to oral or topical treatments, collars are put around the neck like a normal collar. They releasee pesticide in low doses over an extended period of time through your dog’s skin and are left on until it’s time for the next “dose.” No prescription is required, and most are waterproof. Collars are a great option for pet owners who might not feel comfortable administering topical treatments or who have finnicky dogs who do not ingest pills well. However, most collars should not be worn by senior, pregnant, nursing or young dogs.

Other Steps to Take

Along with giving your dog regular preventatives, there are other steps you can do to keep fleas and ticks away from you and your pet.

At home:

Keeping up with your home’s cleanliness – indoors and outdoors is critical. If your dog does happen to pick up fleas or ticks, take care to thoroughly clean areas of your house including your pet’s bedding, toys and other belongings. And, if you have a yard, it’s also important to keep up with outdoor maintenance such as mowing the grass, pulling weeds and trimming shrubs. Yard treatments are also available to keep out unwanted pests.

Walks and outdoor play:

Ticks often live in woodlands. In order to prevent exposure, limit or avoid areas with tall grass. After long walks or hikes, thoroughly check your dog’s fur for ticks. Your dog may also pick up fleas and ticks from other animals, especially if they share common spaces with other dogs or cats.

Overall, Good health starts with good nutrition. Along with administering regular flea and tick preventatives, make sure your dog is getting the right nutrients to support a healthy life. To help keep your dog happy and healthy year-round, consider feeding them Hi-Standard. Our Premium Performance 26/18 Soy-Free Dog Food is enriched with Omega 6 and 3 Fatty Acids to ensure your dog’s healthy skin and coat.

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