Vet Blog

5 Tips for Flea and Tick Prevention in Your Dog or Cat

January 29, 2024

As spring arrives we can look forward to warmer, longer days and spending more time in the sun with our pets. Unfortunately, warmer weather also means an increase in the number of fleas and ticks that can affect your pet and family. Here are 5 ways to be proactive and get a head start on flea and tick prevention for your pets.

1.     Flea and Tick Prevention Starts in Your Yard

Ticks love dense, wooded areas. If your pets roam freely in your garden, good yard maintenance is the first step to flea and tick prevention. Keep your shrubs trimmed and rake up fallen, decaying leaves. Mow your grass often to keep it short. You can discourage tick and flea invested rodents from entering your yard by keeping trash can lids tightly sealed. If your yard isn’t fenced, consider adding one to deter unwanted animals such as rabbits and even untreated cats and dogs in your neighborhood.

2.     Check Your Pet Every Day

Even if you follow these tips, your dog or cat may still be vulnerable to fleas and ticks. Successful flea and tick prevention includes checking your pet’s body every day. Look in around his or her ears and head, down the neck, over the belly, sides and back, and around the tail. Pay special attention to his or her feet and between the toes. Part your pets thick fur with a comb or your fingers to check the skin, where fleas and ticks can be hiding.

If you find a tick, quick removal will reduce the odds of your pet getting a tick-related illness. If you are not comfortable removing the tick yourself, contact the caring staff at Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital as soon as possible.

3.     One Flea Is All It Takes

If you find even a single flea on your pet, it can indicate that there are more fleas and eggs hiding on your pet, in your yard, and in your home. You can consult Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital on the best flea and tick treatment for your dog or cat. The sooner you get started with treatment, the fewer fleas you will have to conquer. If you have multiple pets, treat them all at the same time. Also, wash your bedding, rugs and pillows and vacuum all of the furniture and floors in your home—more than once if necessary. For extreme infestations, you might need to call a professional exterminator. Or, if you decide to try a flea fogger or bomb, be extra careful to remove your pets before, during and after the treatment to protect them from the chemicals and fumes. Be extra diligent and follow the directions very carefully.

4.     Products to Prevent Fleas and Ticks

The best veterinarians in Richardson are at Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital, and they can advise you on the best flea and tick prevention products for you and your pet’s specific needs. Treatment and prevention requirements may change based on the age of your pet, his or her health, and your geographical location. Your budget may also be a deciding factor.

Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital recommends monthly flea and tick prevention for the health of your pet. There are some flea and tick preventives combined with heartworm preventives in order to make monthly administration more easy. These are available in oral and topical forms.

Never give flea and tick medication made for dogs to your cat, or flea and tick medication made for cats to your dog. Formulations often differ, and using the incorrect product can cause illness or even death. Also, it is crucial to read labels to ensure that you are giving your pet the proper dosing. Let your veterinarian know if you have any concerns regarding the safety of any method for flea and tick prevention. The doctors and staff at Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital are dedicated to making you and your pet feel comfortable with all aspects of your pet’s health and preventative care, and helping you stop that itchy dog or cat.

Make an Appointment at Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital

Flea and tick prevention keeps your pets and family healthy and free of skin irritations and diseases spread by the parasites. If you have further questions or want to begin treatment with the best flea and tick prevention for your favorite pet, contact the knowledgeable and compassionate staff at Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital. Call our Richardson office at (972) 690-6900 to make an appointment before the scorching hot weather comes to the DFW area.

Breckinridge Park Animal Hospital serves the northeast Dallas suburban area. We provide the community with some of the best veterinarians in Richardson, Garland, Plano, Murphy, Wylie and Mesquite.

This information is not a substitute for professional veterinary medical advice. Prior to starting any new treatment or questions regarding an animal’s medical condition, always seek the advice of your veterinarian.