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Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. Ask your doctor if Trifexis would be a good flea prevention for you. It’s a monthly pill. It also covers heartworm and intestinal parasites. You must treat your home, yard, and all other pets! Ask a pet store assosciate to help you find the best chemicals for the job.

How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced pet care professionals :

If your dog does have a history of seizures, it is advised to use different flea and tick medications than those mentioned above. Topical medications such as Advantage, Vectra, Revolution, or Frontline are good choices. Some dogs may have a localized reaction to topical medications.
Combine 1 quart of water, 1 cup of white vinegar or apple cider vinegar, and 1 cup of baby shampoo or liquid dish soap. Use this mixture to bathe your dog once or twice a month. Vinegar kills fleas and ticks on contact and can prevent future infestations.
Some essential oils make for excellent flea remedies for dogs. Citronella, eucalyptus, peppermint, tea tree, and rosemary will all naturally repel fleas. If your dog doesn`t mind a spray bottle, dilute a few drops of your chosen essential oil into a 300ml-400ml of water and spray directly onto your dog`s coat.
This natural remedy for fleas is made from non-toxic products found around your home, making it suitable to use around pets and children. Create a flea spray by mixing 4 liters of vinegar, 2 liters of water, 500 ml of lemon juice and 250 ml of witch hazel in a large spray bottle.
According to the ASPCA, caffeine, dark chocolate, mushrooms, theobromine, ethanol, and xylitol can cause your dog`s seizures.
“Cats are especially sensitive to pyrethroids. When treated with concentrated permethrin-containing products labeled for use on dogs, they typically develop muscle tremors, incoordination, seizures, hyperthermia, and death within hours if the toxicity is not treated,” the website states.
Essential oils such as eucalyptus, lavender, Tea tree, and citronella remain the most effective natural flea repellent. You can either spray these essential oils or rub them on your pet`s collar to keep the fleas away.
Apple cider vinegar can`t kill fleas, but it can help to repel them. Fleas don`t like the smell or taste of it, so they`re likely to avoid your pet if they have it on their fur. Dilute apple cider vinegar in water and add it to a spray bottle.
1- Make sure to use virgin, unrefined coconut oil since it`s the best when it comes to repelling fleas and insects.
Citronella, tea tree, peppermint, eucalyptus, and neem are all great essential oils for getting rid of fleas. Add 10 to 20 drops to a spray bottle filled with water and spray on your pet`s coat, taking care to avoid their eyes.
Natural Remedy: Diatomaceous Earth

This talc-like powder is made from silica, the same stuff that makes up sand. You can sprinkle it on carpets, bedding, and furniture. Let it sit for several hours, then vacuum it up. It kills fleas by drying them out.

What Does Coconut Oil Do for Dogs? The alleged benefit with the most evidence to support it is that supplementation with coconut oil may have a positive effect on dogs with epilepsy, by reducing the frequency and intensity of seizures.
Give a Snack. After dogs come out of a seizure, a little all-natural vanilla ice cream, honey, or natural maple syrup will help to raise their sugar levels back up. Follow with a protein such as little kibble, cheese stick, a spoonful of cottage cheese, chicken, etc. to help stabilize those sugar levels.
Frontline Plus for dogs is generally safe to use and causes few side effects. Mild skin irritation may occur but should clear up quickly. Additional side effects may include vomiting, diarrhea, and seizure. However, these side effects are extremely rare and tend to affect smaller dogs.
Missed medication, lack of sleep, stress, alcohol, and menstruation are some of the most common triggers, but there are many more. Flashing lights can cause seizures in some people, but it`s much less frequent than you might imagine.
Using a household spray like FRONTLINE HOMEGARD® will kill fleas, eggs and larvae in the house and get on top of the home infestation more quickly. Use it on carpets, cracks and crevices in flooring and soft-upholstered furniture to give fleas the boot and help prevent their return.
Natural flea repellents such as citronella, eucalyptus, peppermint, and geraniol may naturally repel fleas. If your pet doesn`t mind a spray bottle, dilute a few drops of your chosen repellent into 10-13 fl oz of water and spray directly onto your pet`s coat.
Fleas don`t care for the scent of lemon ,or the limonene in lemons, so applying it to your pet`s coat can deter fleas.
DIY Natural Flea And Tick Treatments For Dogs

Drain the lemon water and pour it into a large glass spray bottle. Add 10 drops each of Lemongrass oil and Citronella oil. Add 1 cup of vinegar (white distilled or apple cider vinegar) Add a few drops of Cedarwood oil.

Many different products are available for home flea treatment. The most effective ones contain ingredients such as permethrin, imidacloprid, or dinotefuran that are lethal to the biting adult stage, and an “insect growth regulator” (e.g., methoprene, pyriproxyfen) that halts development of flea eggs and larvae.
Apple cider vinegar can`t kill fleas, but it can help to repel them. Fleas don`t like the smell or taste of it, so they`re likely to avoid your pet if they have it on their fur.
Apple Cider Vinegar For Fleas On Dogs

Before your dog goes out, spray her with a 50/50 solution of ACV and water. And for some added oomph, put ACV in your dog`s food or water during flea and tick season. Add up to 1 Tbsp for a 50 lb dog. You may want to start with less, in case your dog doesn`t like the taste.

Dilute cider vinegar 50-50 with water and apply with a sprayer or sponge immediately after bathing to remove leftover soap residue, alleviate dandruff and itchy skin, condition hair, and repel fleas. To help prevent dander, rub diluted cider vinegar into the dog`s skin just before bathing and wash it off.
Coconut oil works to kill fleas by the lauric acid that`s present within the coconut. When the lauric acid comes in contact with the flea, the flea`s exoskeleton is covered in the oil making it impossible for the flea to move. This ultimately results in the flea`s death.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. My cat is excessively scrstching herself., to the point she has sores. She is strictly an indoor cat. Did have flees been treated for 2 months
ANSWER : A. For every flea you see on your pet, there are 100 more in the environment. Get your pet on a good topical or oral flea control through your vet. In flea control, you get what you pay for. Consider asking your vet for a dose of Capstar. It helps get the problem under control by killing the fleas on the pet starting in five minutes but only lasts for 24 hours.

You need to treat your home environment. If you use a pest control service, tell them you are having a flea problem and they can adjust their treatment. Use a premise spray that also contains an IGR, insect growth regulator. This keeps eggs and larvae from maturing into adults and helps break the life cycle. Also, vacuum EVERY DAY, throwing out the bag or emptying the canister every time into an outside receptacle and spraying the contents with insecticide to kill the fleas you’ve vacuumed up.

Treat your yard too, since fleas are opportunistic and will hop a ride into your home on your pant leg without you knowing it. Concentrate on areas under bushes, in the shade. Fleas are less likely to be located in open sunny areas where it gets hot.

If chemicals are a problem, you can use borax. Sprinkle it into rugs, into corners and under furniture, use a broom to work it into the fibers and let it sit for hours, days even. It won’t hurt you or your pet to have it present. Then vacuum it up, reapply as needed. Food grade diatomaceous earth can be gotten from a health food store and worked into the rugs and corners in the same way as borax. These treatments aren’t as fast and effective as chemical insecticides but they can help.

You might want to consider boarding your pet for the day at your vet, to give you the opportunity to flea bomb your house without having to worry about your pet being exposed. They can bathe your pet and give a dose of Capstar while you treat your home.

Be patient, you may have to repeat these steps multiple times 10-14 days apart to help break the flea life cycle.

Skin problems can have a variety of causes, sometimes more than one. It is important to have the problem checked by your vet to determine if there is a medical cause for your pet’s skin issues and treat accordingly.

In pets of all ages, fleas, food allergies and exposure to chemical irritants such as cleaners and soaps can be a cause. Any one of these may not be enough to trigger the breakouts, depending on how sensitive your pet is, but a combination can be enough to start the itch-scratch cycle. Finding out the cause and eliminating it is the best course of action. With flea allergies, if your pet is sensitive enough, a single bite can cause them to break out scratch enough to tear their skin.

Check for fleas with a flea comb. Look for fleas and/or tiny black granules, like coarse black pepper. This is flea feces, consisting of digested, dried blood. You may find tiny white particles, like salt, which are the flea eggs. Applying a good topical monthly flea treatment and aggressively treating your house and yard will help break the flea life cycle.

If you use plastic bowls, this is a possible cause for hair loss, though this tends to be on the chin, where their skin touches the bowl while they eat. If you suspect this to be the culprit, try changing the bowls to glass, metal or ceramic.

Food allergies are often caused by sensitivity to a protein in the food. Hill’s Science Diet offers some non-prescription options for sensitive skin as well as prescription hypoallergenic foods for more severe cases. Royal Canin carries limited protein diets that may also offer some relief. Your vet can recommend a specific diet that will help.

If there is no relief or not enough, consider getting your pet checked by a veterinary dermatologist and having allergy testing done.

Q. Do natural flea control products work?
ANSWER : A. Although many natural flea control products don’t have to go through EPA-mandated tests, because they aren’t classified as pesticides, this doesn’t mean they don’t work.

There are several natural flea control products that are safe for your home and your pets: repellants, sprays, squeeze-ons, shampoos, flea tags and powder. Also garlic and B-vitamins seem to make blood less attractive to fleas, so many guardians supplement with garlic and brewers yeast during flea season. However, sensitive animals can develop an allergy to brewer’s yeast, so I suggest you monitor your pet to guard against worsening itchiness.

Many people use the natural approach to flea control effectively and, although it is not always as easy as using chemicals, it’s generally safer for your pet and your family. Regarding chemicals, the US Environmental Protection Agency recently completed an in-depth investigation due to the hundreds of reports of illness and death in pets and serious adverse effects were reported for every product EPA assessed. EPA is in the process of increasing restrictions on their use. You can read more information about this report here: http://www2.epa.gov/pets/epa-evaluation-pet-spot-products-analysis-and-plans-reducing-harmful-effects

Besides, most chemicals, including bombs and sprays, kill only adult fleas or adults and larvae. That leaves thousands of tough little eggs and cocoons just waiting for the proper conditions, when they’ll renew their assault once more.

That said, you must keep in mind that a product labeled as “natural” or “organic” could still be not suitable, or even harmful, for your pet. Therefore, I recommend consulting with your veterinarian or trying to find a holistic veterinarian who can offer you guidance about natural flea control products.

Q. My 13 year old male cat is acting lethargic & doesn’t seem to be feeling well. I don’t know what’s wrong except that he has fleas. Can too many fleas
ANSWER : A. Excessive fleas can cause anemia in cats, left untreated, this can be life-threatening. I recommend getting your cat seen by your vet right away for his illness. For every flea you see on your pet, there are 100 more in the environment. Get your pet on a good topical or oral flea control through your vet. In flea control, you get what you pay for. Consider asking your vet for a dose of Capstar. It helps get the problem under control by killing the fleas on the pet starting in five minutes but only lasts for 24 hours.

You need to treat your home. If you use a pest control service, tell them you are having a flea problem and they can adjust their treatment. Use a premise spray that also contains an IGR, insect growth regulator. This keeps eggs and larvae from maturing into adults and helps break the life cycle. Also, vacuum EVERY DAY, throwing out the bag or emptying the canister every time into an outside receptacle and spraying the contents with insecticide to kill the fleas you’ve vacuumed up.

Treat your yard, since fleas will hop a ride into your home on your pant leg without you knowing it. Concentrate on areas under bushes, in the shade. Fleas are less likely to be located in open sunny areas where it gets hot.

If chemicals are a problem, you can use borax. Sprinkle it into rugs, into corners and under furniture, use a broom to work it into the fibers and let it sit for hours, days even. It won’t hurt you or your pet. Then vacuum it up, reapply as needed. Food grade diatomaceous earth can be gotten from a health food store and worked into the rugs and corners in the same way. These treatments aren’t as fast and effective as chemical insecticides but they can help.

Be patient, you may have to repeat these steps multiple times 10-14 days apart to help break the flea life cycle.

Q. My 8 year old Epileptic doxie cannot use topical flea meds- what safe / natural options do I have? Flea infested and can’t seem to kick them!
ANSWER : A. Ask your doctor if Trifexis would be a good flea prevention for you. It’s a monthly pill. It also covers heartworm and intestinal parasites. You must treat your home, yard, and all other pets! Ask a pet store assosciate to help you find the best chemicals for the job.

Q. How do I FINALLY rid all 4 of my cats of tapeworms after 2 years of dealing with it? Fleas seem to be controlled. I know they are the vector.
ANSWER : A. If your cats keep getting tapeworms, then they are picking up fleas from somewhere. Fleas will hitch a ride on your pant leg from outside.

Get your pet on a good topical or oral flea control through your vet. In flea control, you get what you pay for. Consider asking your vet for a dose of Capstar. It helps get the problem under control by killing the fleas on the pet starting in five minutes but only lasts for 24 hours.

You need to treat your home environment. If you use a pest control service, tell them you are having a flea problem and they can adjust their treatment. Use a premise spray that also contains an IGR, insect growth regulator. This keeps eggs and larvae from maturing into adults and helps break the life cycle. Also, vacuum EVERY DAY, throwing out the bag or emptying the canister every time into an outside receptacle and spraying the contents with insecticide to kill the fleas you’ve vacuumed up.

Treat your yard too, since fleas are opportunistic and will hop a ride into your home on your pant leg without you knowing it. Concentrate on areas under bushes, in the shade. Fleas are less likely to be located in open sunny areas where it gets hot.

You can also use borax. Sprinkle it into rugs, into corners and under furniture, use a broom to work it into the fibers and let it sit for hours, days even. It won’t hurt you or your pet to have it present. Then vacuum it up, reapply as needed. Food grade diatomaceous earth can be worked into the rugs and corners in the same way as borax. These treatments aren’t as fast and effective as chemical insecticides but they can help.

You might want to consider boarding your pet for the day at your vet, to give you the opportunity to flea bomb your house without having to worry about your pet being exposed. They can bathe your pet and give a dose of Capstar while you treat your home.

Be patient, you may have to repeat these steps multiple times 10-14 days apart to help break the life cycle.

Q. Need help, we have done flea bath ,sprayed the house and used charts ultra guard pro and still have fleas .how can we get rid of them
ANSWER : A. For every flea you see on your pet, there are 100 more in the environment. Get your pet on a good topical or oral flea control through your vet. In flea control, you get what you pay for. Consider asking your vet for a dose of Capstar. It helps get the problem under control by killing the fleas on the pet starting in five minutes but only lasts for 24 hours.

You need to treat your home environment. If you use a pest control service, tell them you are having a flea problem and they can adjust their treatment. Use a premise spray that also contains an IGR, insect growth regulator. This keeps eggs and larvae from maturing into adults and helps break the life cycle. Also, vacuum EVERY DAY, throwing out the bag or emptying the canister every time into an outside receptacle and spraying the contents with insecticide to kill the fleas you’ve vacuumed up.

Treat your yard too, since fleas are opportunistic and will hop a ride into your home on your pant leg without you knowing it. Concentrate on areas under bushes, in the shade. Fleas are less likely to be located in open sunny areas where it gets hot.

If chemicals are a problem, you can use borax. Sprinkle it into rugs, into corners and under furniture, use a broom to work it into the fibers and let it sit for hours, days even. It won’t hurt you or your pet to have it present. Then vacuum it up, reapply as needed. Food grade diatomaceous earth can be gotten from a health food store and worked into the rugs and corners in the same way as borax. These treatments aren’t as fast and effective as chemical insecticides but they can help.

You might want to consider boarding your pet for the day at your vet, to give you the opportunity to flea bomb your house without having to worry about your pet being exposed. They can bathe your pet and give a dose of Capstar while you treat your home.

Be patient, you may have to repeat these steps multiple times 10-14 days apart to help break the flea life cycle.

Q. Which flea and tick drops are the best and why?
ANSWER : A. Your question is a good one, and unfortunately the answers are going to differ based on who you ask. Many vets are seeing resistance to Frontline, which has been the go-to product for many of us for many years. It contains the active ingredient Fipronil, which is very safe and typically extremely effective. I use it on my dogs and never see fleas or ticks. However other vets will tell you in their areas, for whatever reason, they are seeing fleas and ticks on dogs and cats on which this product was used.

Another reason opinions differ is that some people like to give an oral product, and some like to put a topical product directly on the skin. That’s a matter of personal preference mostly. Bravecto, as mentioned below, is one of those products. Most people find it safe and effective. It uses a different process that Frontline to kill fleas and ticks.

In general the products you buy over-the-counter are likely going to be less expensive and less effective than what you get from a vet. I think the reason is that the more expensive products contain newer insecticides, and likely less resistance to these products has built up in the flea and tick population but also they are maybe less “proven”, so it’s important for a vet to be involved in the use of the product in order to ensure that there won’t be a negative reaction to using it.

If I lived in an area where there was Lyme disease (in the US that’s the northeast and upper midwest) I’d most definitely add a tick collar to my standard oral or topical flea and tick prevention. AND I’d search both of my dogs everyday for ticks. It’s because nothing you buy will be 100% effective, and Lyme disease can be a very serious problem.

If you want to talk further and talk more specifically about where you live and what products you’re considering, I’d be happy to do a consult with you. Nobody here is paid to recommend products, but we do develop preferences based on what we use on our own pets and in our practices.

Q. I have a pregnant cat and in a couple of weeks my house is getting sprayed to get rid of fleas. But can I put a flea collar on her?
ANSWER : A. It is best NOT to place a flea collar on a pregnant cat as they can cause problems such as deformities or breathing issues to the unborn kittens. If your cat has fleas you may want to check with your vet to see if there is a pregnancy-safe flea product that can be applied, or you may want to use a safe soap such as Dawn to bathe your cat and then use a fine-toothed comb to brush out the dead fleas. Dawn dish soap is very safe on the body and is often used on kittens that are too young for flea medication to suffocate and kill fleas on the body. Cleaning the environment is also a great way to get rid of the fleas, however be sure to keep your cat away from the area that is sprayed if chemicals are used to prevent injury to her or her unborn kittens.