How to get rid of fleas: Choosing the right flea treatment

When it comes to choosing a flea treatment for cats and dogs, it can be confusing. There are many different options to choose from, including spot-ons, collars, sprays and tablets. And then there are ‘combination’ products and household flea treatments too. So, just which flea treatment should you choose for your cat or dog?

3 key questions to ask when choosing on-animal flea treatments

 

1.  Is the flea treatment suitable for my cat or dog?

Like all veterinary medicines, specific flea treatments are designed for  different ages and weights of animals. Many flea treatments are also species specific. Before flea treating your cat or dog, be sure to weigh your pet and read the pack information carefully.

If you’re still unsure, speak to your pet retailer for advice before making a purchase.

Beaphar has a range of on-animal flea control products for cats and dogs. The range includes:

Beaphar FIPROtec® Spray, which is suitable for kittens and puppies from 2 days of age.

Beaphar FIPROtec® Spot-On, which is suitable for cats or dogs. Cats must be 8 weeks of age and weigh 1kg or more. Dogs must be 8 weeks of age and weigh 2kg or more. You will need to pick either Beaphar FIPROtec® Spot-On for Small Dogs, Medium Dogs, Large Dogs or Extra Large Dogs, depending on the weight of your dog

Beaphar FIPROtec® COMBO, which is suitable for cats or dogs. Cats must be 8 weeks of age and weigh 1kg or more. Dogs must be 8 weeks of age and weigh 2kg or more. You will need to pick either Beaphar FIPROtec® COMBO for Small Dogs, Medium Dogs or Large Dogs, depending on the weight of your dog.
  • Beaphar Soft Flea Collars, which are suitable for cats from 12 weeks of age
  • Beaphar Canishield®, which is suitable for dogs from 7 weeks of age

 

2.  Is the flea treatment suitable for my current flea control situation?

For flea infestations:

Choose an on-animal flea treatment that kills adult fleas and a household flea treatment that contains an Insect Growth Regulator (IGR).

95% of a flea infestation is in the environment. This is where you will find flea eggs, flea larvae, flea pupae and newly hatched adult fleas. Only 5% of the flea infestation is on your pet, and is made up of adult fleas.

If you only treat your pet then you will only kill the adult fleas on your pet at the time. If you miss a flea treatment or the efficacy of the flea treatment is compromised (e.g. your pet becomes excessively wet and the flea treatment is washed off), then recently acquired adult fleas may lay eggs. Once these eggs are in the environment, if you haven’t treated your home there is nothing to prevent them from developing into more adult fleas. This is when a flea infestation can occur.

To get on top of a flea infestation, you will need to treat both your pet and your home. We recommend Beaphar FIPROtec® Spot-On and Beaphar FLEAtec Household Flea Spray.

Read our blog How to fight a cat or dog flea infestation – Beaphar’s 5-step plan for a more detailed step-by-step guide.

 

For flea prevention:

For flea prevention, you have a choice of flea treatment methods. Both methods will protect your pet and your home from fleas when used correctly. It’s just a question of which solution suits you, your pet and your lifestyle best.

You can either use: A combination flea treatment for your pet that contains both an insecticide and an Insect Growth Regulator (IGR), such as Beaphar FIPROtec® COMBO.

Beaphar FIPROtec® COMBO is ideal for busy families as it targets the adult fleas, flea eggs and flea larvae. It allows you to get the job done in one; just apply the spot-on to your cat or dog once every four weeks.

OR you can use:

A flea treatment for your pet containing an insecticide, such as Beaphar FIPROtec® Spot-On, and a household flea treatment containing both an insecticide and an IGR, such as Beaphar FLEAtec Household Flea Spray

Beaphar FIPROtec® Spot-On can  be applied to pets once every four weeks and kills adult fleas. Beaphar FLEAtec Household Flea Spray targets adult fleas, flea eggs and flea larvae in the environment, and is effective for up to six months. When used in combination and at the recommended treatment intervals, they do exactly the same job as Beaphar FIPROtec® COMBO.

 

3. Will the flea treatment provide protection for my home, or do I need a household flea treatment as well?

If you’re choosing to use a combination flea treatment like Beaphar FIPROtec® COMBO, you will be protecting your home and your pet.

If you’re choosing to use an insecticidal on-animal flea treatment like Beaphar FIPROtec® Spot-On, you should also use a household flea treatment containing both an insecticide and an IGR, such as Beaphar FLEAtec Household Flea Spray. This is because insecticidal on-animal flea treatments only target adult fleas. If for any reason an adult flea is able to lay eggs (e.g. if you forget to flea-treat your pet or the product efficacy is compromised), you don’t want these new eggs to be able to develop. Using a long-lasting household flea treatment will help prevent a flea infestation from occurring should this happen.

Many pet owners treat their pet, but don’t treat their home. 95% of a flea’s life cycle takes place in the home. This includes the flea eggs, flea larvae and flea pupae. All these life stages have the potential to become more adult fleas. Protecting both your pet and your home, either with a combination flea product or an insecticidal on-animal flea product and a household flea treatment, is the only way to provide full protection from flea infestations.

Understanding the flea life cycle is a key part of successful flea control, and you can find out more in our blog on this topic.

The key thing to remember when it comes to flea treatment is to follow the instructions on the pack. Any gaps in treatment allow fleas to complete their life cycle. This is when a flea infestation can occur.

Some pet owners let their flea treatment routines drop in the winter, believing it is too cold for fleas. And it is true that fleas thrive and reproduce more quickly in warmer environments. However, warmer winters are allowing fleas to stay active for longer. Plus, central heating in homes provides optimum conditions for fleas to thrive all year round. In order to provide your pet, your home and your family with year-round flea protection, you must protect your home as well as your pet. 

to provide your pet, your home and your family with year-round flea protection, you must protect your home as well as your pet. 

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