With flea and tick season upon us, it’s time to start thinking about ways to prevent these pests from harming our animals and invading our homes. If not treated right away, fleas and ticks can become a serious nuisance. Not only are they frustrating, but they can also be dangerous for your dog.
Fleas can cause flea allergy dermatitis, anemia, tapeworms, and hair loss. Ticks transmit serious diseases such as Lyme disease, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. During peak season, taking the time to avoid a full infestation can have a lasting impact towards your pup’s health and happiness.
Flea and Tick Prevention On Your Pet
Apply a Monthly Treatment
The best way to prevent the problem is to stop it before it even begins. Applying a monthly flea treatment kills fleas and ticks that come into contact with the treated animal’s hair and skin, and prevents them from coming back for several weeks.
Get Into the Habit of Regular Grooming
Giving your dog a regular bath and practicing daily grooming habits can also help reduce the number of fleas and ticks on your pet. A soothing bath may kill the fleas by drowning them, and aid in keeping your pet’s skin clean and less attractive to fleas. Bathing is also an important step if you and your pup like to go on hikes or areas where flea and ticks linger.
Flea and Tick Prevention in the Yard
Check the Area Regularly
After you treat your pet, the next step is to check the yard for any infestations. Fleas and ticks will enjoy calling your yard their home if they have the right living conditions. Fleas and ticks typically like to hide out in dim, moist areas, with little to no sunlight. Fleas could be under the porch, in areas of foliage, in tall bushes, and under debris or leaf piles.
Keep Your Yard Well Maintained
Mowing the yard, trimming shrubbery, and cleaning the area of debris and leaves will help alleviate a flea and tick problem. Also, consider creating a wood chip or gravel barrier between the lawn and wooded areas to restrict tick migration. You may also want to begin using a pesticide or spray treatment to help to reduce the population of these pests throughout the yard. Natural yard treatments are available for those who are concerned about harsh chemicals.
Preventing Fleas In the Home
Vacuum and Clean Carpets Regularly
In the event a flea or tick does enter the home, use a powerful vacuum to clean your carpet, rugs, and furniture immediately. Make sure to clean those hard to reach places as well – under the couch, in crevices, and in the closet if needed. If there are areas your dog likes to frequent more than others, focus on cleaning those once or twice a week if not more. Vacuuming lessens the chance of letting pests occupy your home.
Keep the Dog Bed and Linens Clean
Your dog sleeps and spends a lot of time on his doggy bed, which is why washing it frequently in hot water is a must. After giving your dog a bath, throw any towels used in the washer or hot water instead of the laundry basket.
Flea and tick prevention takes some determination to get into good habits, but following these tips will ensure that you are living a flea and tick free lifestyle for you and your pup!