There are several reasons why people celebrate the oncoming summer season. However, fleas return in huge numbers during these warm seasons.
Fleas are blood-sucking tiny parasites. They’re creepy and unsightly. Sadly, they also cause serious diseases. Thus, you’ll want to keep them away from your pets throughout this warm season.
Here are some ideas on how to keep fleas away from your kitty.
Most people assume that a spot-on treatment is only effective on the specific spot it’s applied. In reality, this type of medication is highly effective.
It covers the entire body of a pet. Spot-on drops usually work through a process known as translocation. In this process, the medication spreads over the entire body with the assistance of oil glands, combined with a cat’s habit of grooming itself.
A cat grooms itself by wetting the paws with saliva and then grooming its fur with the wet paws. In addition, this kind of treatment isn’t affected by rain, swimming, or bathing.
It works by killing and repelling fleas for some weeks before demanding reapplication. The treatment also works by interrupting their life cycle.
However, before buying a certain spot-on medication, read its labels to ensure the product you’re choosing is the best for your kitty’s age and size. Remember to only choose a product meant for application on a cat.
Oral Treatment Options
In case the flea infestation is recurring, then it needs to be controlled through oral treatment in combination with a spot-on treatment.
An oral treatment, such as control pills taken once in a month, works by disrupting the flea’s life cycle. The treatment comes as a small tablet. However, it doesn’t kill fully-grown fleas.
Administering these pills is quite easy even for cats that are challenging to medicate. They usually have a flavor that makes them pet-friendly such that your cat will easily accept them.
You can even mix them with the cat’s food at it won’t resist eating the food. Oral treatments are advantageous in that you won’t worry about your kids touching the cat right after administering the drug, unlike a spot-on treatment.
There are special medicated shampoos that you can use to bath your cat and kill ticks and fleas on contact. Most of these shampoos are inexpensive and you can use them throughout the flea season.
However, using them is labor intensive. You should use them once every 2 weeks. Their effective ingredients don’t last long like oral and spot-on flea treatments.
A flea collar is a special type of collar used for repelling and killing fleas. Its effectiveness depends on the extent of invasiveness of the fleas in a pet’s environment.
The collar should be in contact with the cat’s skin to transfer chemicals around its skin and fur. When adjusting a flea collar around the neck of your cat, ensure to leave enough space that can fit two of your fingers.
This is to avoid chocking the cat or causing discomfort. Thus, watch out for any indicators of discomfort such as excessive scratching just in case your cat becomes allergic towards the collar.
Remember to read product labels keenly when buying a collar for your cat. Only buy a collar that is ideal for the age and size of your cat. In case your pet cat is very active or likes going outdoors, then avoid using a collar that can’t be easily released.
Cats are always curious and can easily get caught by fences, and this may result in injuries and even choking. Thus, the collar should come off by itself when a cat gets caught by the collar.
Flea dips usually comprise of concentrated chemicals that are diluted with water. The mixture is applied onto the fur using a sponge. It can also be poured slowly over the cat’s back. These dips are different from shampoo baths.
In this case, you won’t have to rinse your cat after soaking it with the dip. Chemicals used in dips are extremely potent. They should be used with care to avoid toxic reactions. They can be toxic to both cats and humans.
Thus, they’re typically used for controlling severe flea infestations and can only be used minimally. They’re not ideal for regular use. Remember to read labels on the dips before using them to ensure you apply them the right way.
Also, only buy a dip that is ideal for your pet. The potency of chemicals in the dip makes them limited for use in grown cats only.
Avoid using them on kitties under 4 months old. Also, they’re not ideal for nursing or pregnant cats. Consult with your vet about treatment options for nursing and pregnant cats, and kittens.
Sprays and Powders
Flea sprays and powders are affordable methods for repelling fleas in cats. However, you should be extremely cautious when using these products since the fine powder or spray may be irritating to the lungs upon inhalation.
It can affect both cats and humans. Also, keep them away from the mouth, nose, and eyes. They need reapplication quite often since they only stick to the skin temporarily.
Always read the labels that come with sprays and powders before using them on your cat.
A Clean Home
Regardless of the flea infestation level on your cat, be it severe or light, you’ll need to clean your home thoroughly. You should clean your home on a daily basis until the infestation is controlled.
Vacuum along the baseboards and in all corners. Once done, through away the used vacuum bag. Wash your cat’s toys and bedding with soapy, warm water.
Vacuum your car too even if you’re not fond of having the cat in your car. The reason why you should vacuum your car is that you might be carrying some fleas on the shoes and pant cuffs. Fleas can easily build a colony in your car.
Thus, keep it clean by vacuuming. Vacuuming assists by removing most of the larvae and eggs hidden even in the tiniest spaces.
Getting rid of larvae and eggs reduce the overall population of fleas since only a few of them will manage to grow into adults.
Household Foggers and Sprays
You can treat your house further by using foggers and sprays to kill adult fleas. They also kill hatching eggs and larvae. You can get these products from your local pet store or vet’s office.
Take care when using foggers and sprays since they are toxic and can affect children, cats, birds, and fish. Read the labels on the products carefully. Also, seek advice from the vet before using these products.
Stay safe by removing animals from the house for at least 48 hours to ensure the pesticide spray dissipates. In case of severe infestation, you’d rather hire an expert to spray your home professionally.
Flea traps are another method of controlling fleas. They’re readily available from local hardware stores. You can even make them at home.
The trap usually comprises of sticky pads that are laid along the floor such that fleas get stuck on them while jumping or moving around.
Traps assist in eliminating some adult fleas. However, they don’t eliminate larvae and eggs. You can make a DIY trap by placing a small bowl with soapy water on the carpet or floor.
It should be placed close to a source of light at night. The source of light can be a night light or any small lamp. The warm light attracts fleas and they end up jumping into the bowl. They’ll be unable to jump out, thereby drowning.
Clearing the Yard
In case you’ll reduce the areas where fleas breed and live, then you’ll have fewer fleas to deal with. Keeping the lawn, trees, and bushes trimmed back consistently will reduce the breeding grounds of these parasites.
In case the problem persists, then consider trying various yard granular treatments or sprays. You can find them from your local pet store, garden store, or vet.
You can also consider hiring pest control experts to treat your yard regularly. However, be careful when handling these products since they are harmful to animals and people.
You should warn your neighbors before applying the products so that they can keep themselves protected from coming into contact with the toxic products.
Check out this cute little video on the next page on how to give your kitten a flea bath.