Fleas & Ticks – Mild Winter Points to Tough Season for Pets
Fleas & Ticks Big Problem for Pets After Mild Winter
Fleas and ticks are always a concern for our pets, but experts expect the mild winter to make for an especially tough season for dogs and cats this year. Check out this article on fighting fleas and ticks written by Connie Packard Kamedulski.
Fleas and ticks are, unfortunately, very common in dogs. Both can be picked up outside, at the dog park, doggy daycare, or even the vet’s office.
Fleas have four stages in their life cycle: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Adult fleas can live up to eight months! A female flea can land on your pet and lay eggs, which can fall off of the host animal and develop quickly into pupa and then larva. These larva can then lie dormant for several months until a new host comes along. Adult fleas can be easily spotted moving on a pet by separating the fur and looking at the skin. Little black spots on an infected pet’s skin could be flea feces—if these spots turn a dark red when touched with a wet paper towel, this indicates the presence fleas.
Ticks are especially dangerous, because in addition to skin irritation, they can lead to tapeworms, Lyme disease, anemia, and several other maladies. Ticks will attach to any living thing that wanders by – dogs, squirrels, people, etc. It is important to prevent or remove ticks, because if they are attached to a host for more than 24 hours, they can transfer any disease they may carry to that host.