What To Do If Your Cat Has Fleas
If your cat has fleas, its super important you put her on preventative medication ASAP.
The best way to protect your cat from fleas is to talk to your vet about getting them on a regular prevention , Dr. Conrad said. This can be topical or oral medication.
However, there are a couple of ways to temporarily relieve the situation before your prevention treatment fully kicks in . The oral prescription medication Capstar kills adult fleas and sterilizes flea eggs within the first 30 minutes, and a medicated flea shampoo specifically formulated for cats can kill fleas on contact.
Flea shampoo can be a good starting point for treating a bad infestation, but only kills adult fleas, Dr. Conrad said. bathing a flea-infested cat will not help if you are not treating the cat and environment.
All pets in the home and the home itself will need to be treated for fleas. So dogs and cats will need to be put on flea prevention medications, and all bedding and soft surfaces should be washed in hot water or treated with flea-killing chemicals that are safe for use at home.
Dr. Conrad said it may even be a good idea to talk to an exterminator about treating your home and yard for fleas if the infestation is bad enough. Once you start the process, it could take up two months to get it fully under control, she said.
How To Eradicate Fleas On Cats
If you suspect or find a flea infestation, contact your veterinarian immediately to help start the treatment process. Besides making your cat miserable, fleas can cause anemia because they feed on blood. They can also cause skin conditions due to constant scratching and even transmit tapeworms. Its critical to get your cat feeling better, and to ensure no one else in the household is targeted by the fleas.
If My Cat Or Dog Does Have Fleas How Do I Get Rid Of Them
A number of safe and effective treatments can be used to eliminate fleas, including shampoos, sprays, powders and topical liquids. You may need to visit your vet for prescription creams and antibiotics if your pet’s case is more severe.
Early treatment and prevention are the first methods of choice to ensure your dog doesn’t develop more serious issues in the future, as a result of fleas.
Don’t Miss: What Does It Mean If A Cat Purrs
Signs That Your Cat Has Fleas
Fleas are pesky little pests that can cause a ton of problems. Cats always love to groom themselves so even if your cat is carrying fleas it could be hard to find them, considering those annoying insects can jump high. There are certain signs that can assure you if your feline is having fleas or not.
Your Cat Becomes Anxious
Fleas can drive anyone crazy, especially the animal they are attacking. The constant biting and the resulting itch and irritation may cause a severe shift in your cats otherwise pleasant and peaceful demeanor. If you notice your cat becoming increasingly aggressive, irritable, upset or frantic, fleas may be the cause. Take a closer look at your cats fur and skin and seek the care of and advice from your veterinarian.
Also Check: Cat Litter For Long Haired Cats
How To Check Your Cat For Fleas And Ticks
With warmer temperatures on the horizon, its important to be on the lookout for fleas and ticks. However, those pesky hitchhikers arent exclusive to summer months, so checking your feline for them should be a regular part of your post-adventure routine year-round.
Fleas and ticks are uncomfortable. They bite and irritate your cats skin, but they can also transmit potentially fatal diseases in the process. Collars and topical treatments can help prevent infestations, but periodic body checks are an extra assurance that those critters arent given time to attach or lay eggs.
Checking Your Cat for Ticks
According to PetMD, ticks love dark, hidden places on a cats body. If your cat has a longer coat, this may make them more difficult to spot. But once a tick finds a place to feed, it hunkers down and begins growing in size.
Using your fingers or a small flea comb, start at your cats head and work your way to his tail. Dont simply comb his furmake sure to feel along his skin. If you feel a bump, check the area before moving on. If youre using a brush or comb, dont force the comb over a bump. You dont want to accidentally separate the ticks body from its head.
Make sure to check the following spots on your cats body:
- Neck and underneath the collar
- Under front and rear legs
- Between toes, both on the bottom and top of the paws
- Ears, both inside and out
Checking Your Cat for Fleas
With Treatment And Home Cleaning You Can Eradicate Fleas On Cats From Both Your Pet And Your Home
Is there a way to prevent a fleas on cats infestation without having to spray all the chemicals around your house?
Yes, there is. It is a bit tedious but hey, where there is will, theres gotta be a way too! You can use natural home treatments to keep your home clean and prevent flea infestation.
Diatomaceous Earth is a great option to ward off fleas. It is natural and is considered an effective preventive option. DE is made up of diatoms- a single-cell living organism. Skeletons of these organisms are made of silica. They fossilize in the sedimentary deposits of rivers, lakes, and oceans.
This is how DE is formed and mined. But how does it help with flea infestations?
DE has diatom fossils that have a natural affinity for the lipid layer of fleas. DE penetrates their outer layer, scratches them, and absorbs their fats and oils. This eventually dries out these nasty parasites. Wonderful! Isnt it?
But there is a small catch. DE can kill adult fleas but is ineffective on flea eggs. So, dont expect DE to be the ultimate knight in shining armor.
Recommended Reading: Tomcat Mouse Killer Safe For Cats
How To Tell If Your Pet Has Fleas
Identifying the signs of a flea infestation is crucial. The veterinarians we spoke to outlined three signs to look out for.
- Increased itching: Casual scratching or grooming is one thing, but if you notice your pet excessively scratching in a particular area, youll want to inspect further. You can do so by running your fingers or combing through their fur. Flea bites are sharp and painful, and their salivary glands give off a substance that’s irritating or even allergic to cats and dogs, Cooley tells us.
- Fleas on hair follicles: Adult fleas are reddish-brown and smaller than a grain of rice. Since fleas move fast through your pets hair, it is often easier to spot what is called flea dirt.
- Presence of flea dirt: Also known as flea feces, flea dirt has been described as brownish-black dirt. If you are unsure whether it is real dirt or flea dirt, run it under water: If it turns red, then its flea dirt and youll have to treat it accordingly.
Otherwise, veterinarians recommended periodically scanning your pets bedding, carpets or other surfaces they hang out in or on for any signs of fleas.
The Signs Of A Flea Infestation
Your cat or dog could be allergic to a protein in flea saliva which is the reason why your pet start’s to scratch and become irritated just after being bitten by a flea.
Other than scratching, red bumps or pimples could appear at the base of your pet’s tail, on their belly, on their behind, under their legs, or on their groin. Continuous itching and scratching of these areas will lead to dry skin and hair loss. Lesions and infections can develop and lead to more severe diseases if fleas are left untreated.
Also Check: Is Eucalyptus Plant Safe For Cats
Assessing Your Cat’s Symptoms
How To Get Rid Of Fleas On Cats Faqs
Can cats get rid of fleas on their own?
Unless the infestation is extremely minimal, cats will not get rid of fleas on their own. The population may vary depending on the weather/season, but they will always be present at some level in the house, until it is properly treated.
How does Dawn get rid of fleas on cats?
Dawn dish detergent changes the surface of the outside of the flea, making it unable to shed water or float when in wateressentially causing it to drown in the bath water.
Can humans get fleas from cats?
Absolutely! Humans can not only get fleas from cats, but they can give fleas to cats.
How did my indoor cat get fleas?
Fleas can hitchhike in on the clothing of their human family and give fleas to you cat. Fleas are also remarkable jumpers and may come in through screened doors and windows. Other pets, such as dogs, may also bring them into the house.
Recommended Reading: Why Do Cats Like To Sleep With Their Owners
When There Are No Fleas And Your Pet Is Scratching
If there aren’t any signs of fleas but your pet is still scratching, book an appointment with your primary care veterinarian, who will be able to administer a skin test to check for flea allergies, in addition to other types of allergies during your visit. Your pet may be reacting to another type of allergy that’s making them uncomfortable.
How To Tell If Your Cat Has Fleas
Fleas are very active insects. They can jump onto passing animals and burrow down into the fur to the skin, where they stay hidden while biting and ingesting blood. This is irritating to the cat, as the bites can cause severe itching, allergic reactions, and inflammation.
Fleas are small, wingless, flat insects with three pairs of legs. The adult flea is only about 1/8 of an inch long and looks like a small black fleck. Fleas can be seen in cats as live insects or small brown-black flecks that look like dirt. These tiny flecks are flea dirt, which is the feces from the flea.
Its important to remember that even indoor cats get fleas. Once fleas get into your home, they multiply rapidly. The most common way for fleas to enter your household is on the family dog or another pet that comes inside after being outdoors. Cats can also get fleas from neighbor pets, new environments, and other local wildlife such as birds, rabbits, raccoons, opossums, squirrels, and skunks.
Also Check: What Kind Of Shots Do Cats Need
Why Is My Cat Still Itching After Flea Treatment
While itching and scratching may indicate that your cat still has fleas, its not always because of fleas. Your cat may be grooming as normal. Or perhaps they dont like the feeling of the flea spot-on at the back of their neck and are trying to groom it off, but this should subside.
Like with human medicines, there is a small possibility that your cat has a sensitivity to one of the active ingredients in the flea treatment. If your cat continues to scratch excessively at the site of application or you notice any hair loss or redness, seek veterinary advice immediately and take the product packaging with you.
If this occurs after using a Beaphar flea product, we would also like you to contact our Customer Services Team. We take all reports of suspected adverse reactions very seriously and keep detailed records of anything reported to us so that these can be passed on to the . The VMD ensure that all veterinary medicines continue to be safe and effective. Contact details for our Customer Service Team can be found in our website footer.
Find out more about the Fleas and Beaphar Flea Products
Treating Your Home And Yard With Cat Flea
So, you took care of the fleas on cat infestation on your cats body. But what about your home? You need to rid each and every corner of your home or else the bad news is going to return.
The best approach, in this case, is to interrupt the flea cycle. For this, you can use flea-control sprays and powders that will inhibit the growth of fleas. These sprays kill all forms of fleas- egg, larva, adult- everyone.
Spray them on your carpet, throw rugs, beneath furniture, cabinets, cushions, curtains- just anywhere you suspect fleas on cats could be living. Spray on the spots your cat frequents and make sure you pay special attention under your bed.
Fleas could be living right under there! You can use a flea trap as well. But remember they do not kill the flea infestation completely. You will have to use it along with other methods.
Aerosol sprays are the best for carpets and pet bedding. Make sure it has an insect growth regulator . These aerosol sprays have super fast-acting insecticides carefully combined with slow-release IGR.
This combination is necessary to prevent a fleas on cat infestation for long durations. Both the larvae and eggs wont be able to breed. You will need to spray these once a month.
You May Like: Can Cats Catch Parvo From Dogs
How Can I Treat My Home Environment
A number of products are available to kill the adult and larval stages of fleas and stop the flea life cycle, such as:
adulticide sprays for use in the house sprays containing IGR for use in the house insecticides applied by professional pest control companies
Sprays for use in the house should be used in places where the flea eggs, larvae, and pupae are likely to be. Treat the entire household first and then concentrate on the hot spots – your cat’s favorite napping spots – such as soft furniture, beds, and carpets. Once they hatch from the egg, flea larvae move away from the light and burrow deep into carpets and into other nooks and crannies where they are difficult to reach. Be sure to move cushions, furniture, and beds to spray underneath them. Other places larvae are likely to live include baseboards and the cracks and crevices between floor seams or floorboards.
Why Does My Cat Still Have Fleas After Treating Her And The Environment
The apparent failure of treatment almost always results from improper application of the preventive, inadequate treatment of the home, or exposure to other infested pets or environments. There is no evidence of fleas developing resistance to insecticides, especially once-a-month topical flea preventives that contain a sterilizing agent or IGR in addition to the adulticide. Consider treating storage sheds, cars, and any outdoor sleeping spots. Bear in mind that your cat may be going into other people’s houses if allowed to roam outdoors. Most of these problems can be overcome by using an effective flea preventive product on your cat in addition to treating your home.
Also Check: Why Is My Cats Eye Foggy
You Notice Tiny Pepper
These specks may be flea dirt. Its one of the most common signs that your cat has fleas. When a flea bites your cat, the faeces from the digested blood will appear on your cats fur or a comb or brush. If you notice these tiny, pepper-like specks, take a sample, place it on a white paper towel or cloth and mist it with water. If the sample turns red, it is likely flea dirt. Consult your veterinary team for advice to manage flea infestations in your home.
Preventing Fleas In Cats
Preventing fleas in cats is much easier than treating a flea infestation, and the best form of medicine is always prevention. You can use one of the medications discussed above to help aid in the monthly prevention of fleas. A veterinarian can help you determine the best option for your cat depending on its lifestyle, so it is safe from future flea infestations. Your cat will thank you for it.
Recommended Reading: How To Use Cat Calming Spray
Cat Fleas Can Transmit Other Parasites And Infections To Dogs And Cats And
Cat fleas symptoms on humans. If the creams and lotions dont help your situation, there are antihistamines informs of tablets and liquids that can also be applied to treat the same problems. Any cat can get fleas but of course, indoor kitties are far less at risk. Flea actually cant survive on human skin, due to scarcity of hair or fur on human body, but still it can give painful bites to humans.
Cats pass the disease on to humans by biting or scratching a person hard enough to break the skin, or by licking on or near wounds or scabs, the cdc says. The cat flea is the most common species of fleas and is known for biting humans. If they dont find enough cat hosts, theyll suck on the owners ankles and feet.
Although fleas still prefer pets as their host, they are more than willing to feed on humans too! Products you can buy of the shelf, without a prescription (e.g. If cat fleas are removed from their animal host, or if that host proves an insufficient food source, cat fleas often will bite humans on the lower legs, leaving round, red spots.
Cat scratch disease is transmitted by 40% cats, and can be passed to a human via fleas. Fleas are parasites theyre looking for blood to suck, says dr. Lifecycle of the cat flea.
These fleas can bite humans, just as they bite cats. Although some people think that cat scratch disease is caused by cat fleas, the center for disease control states that there is no evidence for this. Symptoms of flea bites on humans.