Vet experts want to keep the dogs they treat free of fleas for good reason. Fleas can cause skin irritation, itching, tapeworms, and heartworms if not treated.
Prevention and management are the only way to avoid an infestation. However, products exist which can help prevent or control an infestation when properly used. The best way to rid a dog of fleas is with treatments recommended by veterinarians. This is because they are the most effective products available, which are designed for use with dogs specifically.
Some vets recommend using a flea comb to check for live fleas on your dog. This is especially helpful in determining whether or not you have missed any during treatment, or if there are any eggs present. Effective flea treatments for dogs will not only kill any live fleas but will also break the life cycle of the infestation and rid your dog of future infestations.
The best flea treatment for dogs varies according to the ingredients used in a particular product. Some products have only chemicals, while others may use natural essential oils instead. In either case, using a treatment recommended by a veterinarian will reduce the chance of dangerous side effects. Here are some of the most common vet-recommended flea treatments for dogs:
This is a topical treatment that contains the active ingredients spinosad and milbemycin oxime. It kills 98 to 100 percent of fleas within 12 hours, as well as kills chewing lice. It also prevents flea eggs from hatching for one month after application, which means it's better than many other treatments at preventing a re-infestation.
This is an oral treatment for dogs that lasts three months per dose, and it works by causing neurological damage to the flea once ingested. It is a convenient choice because it only needs to be given every 12 weeks, instead of monthly like many topical treatments. The most common side effect is vomiting, but the product has also been linked to seizures and neurological issues in some dogs.
This oral treatment for dogs contains afoxolaner, which is a newer flea medication than many others on the market. It works by killing and repelling adult fleas, as well as killing larvae and preventing eggs from hatching. It lasts for one month per dose.
This topical treatment is recommended by vets because it prevents and treats flea infestations, heartworm disease, and ear mites in dogs. The product also protects against ticks, which may carry Lyme disease. It is a convenient choice because it only needs to be applied once a month. The most common side effects of this treatment are vomiting and diarrhea, but the product has also been linked to seizures in some dogs when used at high doses.
As the name suggests, topical treatments for dogs contain active ingredients that are absorbed into the skin. These treatments can be applied monthly or according to a specific dosage schedule, and they usually last longer than oral or collar-based products. However, these methods may cause more severe side effects in some cases compared to other treatment types. Common side effects of topical treatments include skin irritation or itching, and in some cases, seizures.
There are many considerations when choosing the best flea treatment for a dog. It is important to talk to your veterinarian about any concerns and determine which method is safest and most effective for your dog. Furthermore, it is important to ask about the indications for using a specific flea treatment, as well as any potential side effects that may occur.