Any pet owner will dread on the onset of summer because it also heralds the arrival of fleas.
Fleas are not just irritating to your pets, they can pose a serious health risk, and once they have taken hold in your house they are extremely difficult to eradicate.
Some animals are allergic to the saliva of fleas whilst others can scratch their skin so much if untreated that they develop infections and sores.
Animals can even become anaemic as if there are a large number of fleas on a pet they can suck out huge amounts of blood.
The problem is, the minute your pets come indoors with fleas you are onto a losing battle trying to get rid of them. This is because one adult female flea can lay up to 50 eggs a day. These eggs typically fall off the animal and lie in carpets or furnishings where they can lie dormant for up to months without hatching. This might lead an owner to suspect they have tackled the problem when in fact the flea cycle repeats itself and you are back to stage one.
Experts say the best way to tackle fleas is in two steps, first to treat the affected animal with a topical medication, then the surrounding areas.
Here are the best flea treatments for your pets and your home:
Frontline Plus Spot On Small Dog – £21.52
This flea treatment contains two active ingredients – fipronil, which kills adult fleas and ticks and (S)-methoprene which attacks flea eggs and larvae. Together they break the cycle of adult fleas laying eggs and destroy the next generation of fleas. There are three pipettes in this pack but you can get ones with six in.
Advantage 100 for Dogs 4-10kg – £9.99
This flea treatment contains two ingredients that not only kills fleas but prevents the larvae from hatching. It kills fleas within 5 minutes of treatment and kills larvae within 20 minutes. You get four pipettes for four months treatment.
FRONTLINE Spot On for Large Dogs, 20-40kg 3 Pipettes – £18.89
This flea treatment not only tackles fleas but kills ticks as well. It contains fipronil, which kills any adult fleas within 24 hours and also adult ticks within 48 hours. This ingredient also stops the reinfestation of fleas. You apply the spot-on treatment by pulling back the animal’s fur on the neck and applying directly onto the skin. You get three pipettes here which is enough treatment for three months.
Seresto Large Dog Collar – £22.40
Decades ago everyone used flea collars to stop the increase of fleas, nowadays, thanks to the invention of spot-on treatments many owners do not think that flea collars do a great job. This one from Seresto however has great customer reviews and protects against fleas and their larvae, and ticks. It also lasts for up to eight months and is water-resistant.
Capstar Tablets for Medium and Large Dogs – 6 Tablets – £16.04
If your pet’s coat is particularly thick and you find it difficult to get the spot-on treatment onto the skin, one way around this is to give them a flea treatment tablet. This one form Capstar is really fast and perfect if your pet is covered in fleas and it works within minutes and customers said they saw fleas literally dropping off after treatment.
Virbac Indorex Flea Spray 500ml – £9.50
Finally it is just as important to treat the areas surrounding your pet as well as the pet itself. This is because the flea eggs drop off your pet and can lie dormant for months in the carpet and on furnishings. This spray contains active ingredients which kill fleas and their eggs and larvae for up to 12 months.