We are right in the middle of flea and tick season, have you been checking your pets? It is now more important than ever to regularly check your pets for fleas and ticks in addition to using the right preventative treatments.
Fleas and ticks can cause serious health problems for our furry family members so make it a habit to check them regularly as outbreaks in your area can happen at any time, especially during flea and tick season. Our seasonal charts can help identify when flea and tick season typically is where you live.
Use this guide with tips to learn how to check your pets for both fleas and ticks and remember to also use flea and tick treatment and prevention throughout the year.
How to Check Your Dog for Fleas
- Using a fine-toothed metal flea comb, run the comb along your pet’s back or stomach, making sure to come in contact with your pet’s skin.
- Pull out any fleas and drown them immediately in a bowl of soapy water.
- Brush or rub your pet’s coat while he is standing on a white sheet or towel. Watch the sheet or towel for any small, black specks that might be fleas or “flea dirt” (actually flea feces). Flea dirt is generally black and comma-shaped. When moistened and rubbed lightly, flea dirt will leave a telltale brownish-red stain.
- If you have not found any trace of fleas, but your pet continues to scratch, you might want to have your veterinarian check your pet.
How to Check Your Dog for Ticks
- Ticks like to attach close to the animal’s head, neck or stomach. They can be as small as a pinhead and very hard to see.
- Begin at the head of your dog. Check the whisker area and around the snout. Look in and around the ears.
- Also examine the stomach, back and paws, including the tail and between the toes.
- Gently comb the hair, but be careful if you encounter a snag as it may be a tick.
- Do not pull the tick out with the comb as it can leave pieces behind.