If you have a dog or cat, then you’re probably well-versed in the battle against fleas and ticks. These pesky parasites can cause skin problems for our furry friends, but they can also spread serious illnesses to humans. If left untreated, these pests can infect humans with Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever—two diseases that come with symptoms that range from headaches and fatigue to muscle aches and vomiting. Yikes! So when exactly do these critters come out? Let’s find out:
Fleas are more prevalent during warm weather months.
While fleas can be a problem any time of year, they tend to be most active in the summer. You may notice that your pet is scratching a lot more than usual and start to wonder if they have fleas—especially if you also see small black specks in their fur or on your floor or furniture. If you do suspect an infestation, contact your vet right away so they can recommend specific treatment.
Fleas can get into your home any time of year.
While fleas tend to be most active during the summer months, they can get into your home any time of year. Fleas can be brought in on your shoes and clothing as you walk through the grass or other areas where they live.
Fleas will also make it inside if they are carried by an animal that has fleas living on it—for example a cat or dog.
Ticks are out year-round.
Ticks are out year-round. They’re most active in the spring and fall, but they can be found all throughout the year.
Ticks prefer to live in forested areas where there are lots of trees and shrubs, which means they’re most likely to be found near wooded trails and parks. They also like tall grasses with lots of brush that can help them hide from predators (like you!).
However, if you live somewhere with cold winters and warm summers, ticks could die off during the winter months only to come back when it gets warmer again.
Protect your pet from fleas and ticks before they become a problem
There are a few things you can do to protect your pets from fleas and ticks:
- Keep your pet’s fur brushed and clean. Fleas and ticks can live for years on the host, so even if you think your pet has been free of them for months, it is important to treat the area with a flea-and-tick treatment before going outside.
- Use a flea and tick medication. There are many different types of medications available for both dogs and cats, including topical treatments, oral medications, treats, or collars. A veterinarian can help you choose the best product based on your specific needs and lifestyle.
- Keep bedding clean. Wash all bedding regularly—even if there are no signs of fleas or ticks—and use vacuum cleaners frequently to remove eggs from carpets or floors where pets sleep or play during the day. Do not leave pet beds outdoors overnight; bring them indoors when not in use. If possible keep pets indoors during peak times for insect activity; this reduces exposure to parasites by keeping them away from potential hosts like raccoons.
You can keep your pets tick and flea free year-round with the help of VIP Animal Hospital. We offer a range of treatments to suit your pets and keep them clean, happy, and comfortable! Contact us today to learn more.