How to Get Rid of Fleas On Dogs in 4 Easy Steps
If you are a responsible dog owner, you will do anything you can to keep fleas off your dog. However, avoiding them might be impossible in some cases. They are a real nuisance, and your dog won’t have even a bit of peace if these parasites start bugging them. These pesky fleas can even infect us, and that is not something anyone would want to experience.
Just imagining having tiny bugs feeding on your blood can be pretty chilling, and having them on your pet is unacceptable. They can cause all sorts of trouble, and if you have a dog, you should know how to get rid of fleas. Here is what you need to know about dog fleas.
What are they?
Dog fleas are a common parasite. They feed on the blood of their hosts and can transmit different diseases. They bite their host and cause itching and discomfort. You must get rid of them as soon as possible because the diseases they carry can be pretty dangerous. Here are some dangerous diseases fleas can transmit to dogs;
Murine Typhus-carrying fleas are usually found on rats, but dogs or cats that contact infected rats can get these fleas. If that happens, the disease-carrying flea will bite the dog to feed. When fleas bite, they usually defecate at the same time, and the Rickettsia typhi bacteria that causes typhus will get into the host’s system.
Technically, the tapeworm is a parasite and not a disease. Dogs may get infected by tapeworm if they swallow an adult flea that carries the parasite. It is uncommon for adult humans to get, but children can easily get infected while playing outside. Luckily, tapeworms are easily treatable by specialized medication that will dissolve the parasite inside the intestine.
You can check the best ways to get your dog rid of parasites in this article - Best dewormers for dogs.
Bartonella is a zoonotic disease that can infect dogs as well as humans. It can be easily spotted by a red bump on the insect bite site, and the infected dog or human will be nauseous. It can be treated by antibiotics like amoxicillin or enrofloxacin for an extended period, but it is still unknown if these meds can kill 100% of bacteria in the bloodstream.
How to spot fleas on your dog?
To help our dog get rid of fleas, we need to see the signs of these little parasites on our dog. They are usually easy to notice if you know what you are looking for. If you notice any of these symptoms on your dog, it might mean they have fleas;
- Bald spots
- Tiny red bumps on the belly
- Hair loss
- Dry skin
How to check your dog for fleas?
Before you decide to treat your dog for fleas, you need to make sure they actually have them. Other skin conditions can be mistaken for a flea infestation. The best way to do that is to inspect your dog’s coat and skin. Part the hair and expose their skin. You will probably notice fleas moving pretty quickly and running into hair-covered areas. You can also notice redness and damage done by scratching. There can also be traces of flea excrement. You might notice tiny black dots that look like pepper.
How to get rid of fleas in dogs?
If you follow these four easy steps, you will get rid of fleas infecting your dog, and your dog will have a good night’s sleep at last. As you can see, fleas are dangerous, and you or your pet could get infected with different diseases fleas carry. Make sure to call your vet and ask for advice on how to get rid of fleas. Here are the necessary steps your vet might recommend.
1. Learn about dog fleas
If you want to get rid of fleas effectively, you need to understand their different lifecycles. Each cycle requires a different approach. Fleas have four life stages; egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Getting rid of just one will leave fleas surviving in the other three stages and will reinfest your dog. Make sure you ask your vet for the best approach and advice. They will most likely write a prescribe a shampoo or a pill that can kill the fleas on your dog.
2. Comb your dog’s hair
Combing your dog’s hair can get rid of some adult fleas. They can be killed by throwing them in hot soapy water. You shouldn’t try to squash them because they are fast and they can jump. They can quickly get away from you and run into a safe space where you won’t see them.
3. Make sure your home is flea-free
Getting fleas off your dog is the easy part; getting your home uninfected is a lot harder. Fleas can survive in carpets, bedding, couches, tiles, hardwood floors, and different places that can hide them from your sight. Plus, they are tiny, so it is hard enough for you to miss them as they are.
Make sure you start cleaning everything in your home. Vacuum everything and make sure you wash all bedding, cushions, carpets, and drapes with warm soapy water. Clean your dog’s crate, bed, toys, and other things they have. After vacuuming, make sure you throw the bag away. You might want to call an exterminator to help you by spraying your home with special insecticides that will kill the fleas.
The best way to keep your life flea-free is to prevent them from ever entering your life. There are many different flea-control products you can use for your dog or your home. You can check out dog collars that keep fleas and ticks away from your dog; pills, sprays, or shampoos are a good option as well.
Do you know how to get rid of ticks? Check out this article - Getting rid of ticks.
Some store-bought anti-flea products might contain hazardous chemicals you might be reluctant to use near your dog. You can make your flea spray at home. It is natural and entirely safe for you and your dog. Follow this recipe, and you will have an effective flea repellant;
- 4 L of vinegar
- 2 L of water
- 500 mL of lemon juice
- 250 mL of witch hazel
This makes an ideal spray that you can spray all-around your home after you washed and cleaned everything.
Check out this article for other flea and tick tips - Tips to Help Protect Your Dog From Fleas and Ticks.
World Dog Finder team