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Dog Flea & Tick - Your Questions About Fleas & Ticks On your Dog Answered

Can fleas and ticks spread from my dog to my home and family?

Yes, fleas and ticks can actually cross over to your home and family from your dog. Even though they typically don't want to bite us, especially fleas, ticks definitely can and occasionally fleas will as well. They can both be embedded in cloth-like fabrics and get in through windows and doors. They can also ride on your shoes, pant legs, or your dog's fur. So even if your dog is indoor only or primarily indoors, there is still a risk for fleas and ticks.

Dr. Chelsea Garwood

Dr. Garwood, what health problems can fleas and ticks cause in my dog?

Fleas and ticks can cause several health problems in dogs. Fleas can oftentimes cause an allergic reaction. You'll see it frequently with hair loss and redness of the skin, especially near the base of the tail. Ticks carry their own tick-borne diseases. There is quite a variety, but primarily if we are concerned about a tick-borne illness, you will see signs such as occasional waxing, waning lameness, as well as fever.

Sometimes it's hard for me to tell if my dog has fleas or ticks. How can I identify fleas or ticks on my dog?

Identifying a flea can be difficult. They are very tiny little black dots that you might see on your pet, as well as hair loss or flea dirt, which again are tiny little black specks, often at the base of the tail. Ticks can be found anywhere, and they can be brown and black, with six legs. They can be hard to find. If you see any fleas or ticks, I recommend going to your veterinarian for an exam to ensure everything is okay and they can direct you to the correct prevention.

What type of flea and tick prevention medications are available and how effective are they?

Flea and tick medications can be quite effective, especially when given correctly. Most of them are given once a month, however, there are a variety on the market. There are orals, topicals, and a collar. Typically, the newer ones on the market, such as Brevecto and Nexgard, are orals. These are more effective because we are starting to see parasite resistance or resistance from fleas and ticks to the older medications. That is also why it's important to get it from your veterinarian rather than over the counter, because we know how it is being stored and it's being stored properly from effective sources.

What should I do if I see fleas or ticks on my dog?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding fleas or ticks, please don't hesitate to give us a call. We want to make sure that your dog or cat remains flea and tick free.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (469) 310-4859, or you can email us at [email protected]. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can. Don't forget to follow us on social media Facebook, Instagram

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