An allergy to flea bites is perhaps the most common allergic reaction in dogs. In cold climates, flea infestations may last only the few months of summer and fall. However, in temperate zones, fleas can be a problem for your dogs twelve months of the year.
If your dog is repeatedly biting at the base of his tail and scratching his body wildly, flea allergy dermatitis may well be the cause of his discomfort. You may notice places on the animal’s body where the fur has thinned or bald spots have developed. The skin may appear red and even raw where he has chewed and scratched incessantly.
For a dog with a flea allergy, it takes only a few fleas to drive him wild with itching. The allergy is to the flea saliva that is deposited when the flea bites the dog to draw blood. If you bathe your dog frequently you may not notice the flea dirt left behind by this parasite. Flea dirt is actually excrement which is deposited on your dog and shows as small dark spots that turn red when moistened.
A dog suffering from an allergic reaction to flea bites may also have reactions to other things such as foods, plastics or nylon or environmental allergens such as grass and weeds. If your complaint is of frequent scratching and irritated skin on your dog, your veterinarian will first rule out parasites such as fleas and mites before testing your pet further.
If you faithfully use topical flea drops on your pet, you may have ruled out fleas as a cause of your dog’s scratchy behavior. The problem with flea medications for dogs is that fleas reproduce rapidly and can quickly mutate to protect themselves from the medicines meant to kill them.
For that reason, it is wise to change the brand of flea medicine you use at least once a year. If you notice small dark specks on your dogs coat there’s a good chance the fleas have developed a defense for the pet medication you have been using.
A single flea bite will cause a reaction in a sensitive canine. Products meant only to kill adult fleas are not sufficient as the goal should be to prevent any fleas from investing your dog. Prescription pet meds are designed to kill adult fleas and to interrupt the flea life cycle by killing flea eggs as they hatch.
If fleas are the cause of your dog’s skin problems, you can assume there are fleas in your home, too. The pests will hide in dog bedding and furniture and will continue to plague your animal as long as he is exposed to them.
Ridding a pet of fleas requires a multi-pronged approach by the owner. For the dog, you can give one dose of Capstar which is now available online as a discount pet medicine. This one pill will kill all of the adult fleas making a home on your pet within 24 hours.
During that one day period, wash all pet bedding in hot water and use a safe flea spray throughout your home to eliminate fleas hiding in furniture and carpets. One day after giving your pet a dose of Capstar, administer a topical flea medicine for dogs and renew the application every 30 days as recommended.
Some widely used effective flea medicines for dogs are available as discounted pet medications online without a prescription required. The most popular are:
Kills fleas quickly – usually within 12 hours. Also kills flea larvae when it comes into contact with your dog from surrounding areas and adult fleas jumping onto your dog are killed within two hours. Within one week Advantage also kills lice that may be chewing on your pet. A treatment is effective for 30 days after application and is not affected if your pet goes swimming or bathing. Advantage was the first spot on flea treatment for dogs that contained residual flea killing properties in a monthly application and remains one of the least expensive options for pet owners.
Front Line Plus-
Front Line Plus adds tick protection to flea killing properties in a topical spot on flea treatment for dogs. It can be used on puppies as young as 8 weeks old and is safe for pregnant and lactating canines. The protection last through bathing and grooming.
This flea medicine breaks the flea life cycle, kills ticks and repels mosquitoes. Flea are killed very quickly with K9 Advantix as it stops biting fleas in minutes and kills 98-100% of the fleas on your pet within 12 hours. K9Advantix should not be used on dogs that come into close contact with cats. Some ingredients in this product cannot be metabolized by cats and a dog treated with this topical pet med should be kept away from household cats for an hour or until the spots have dried.
Revolution is a topical flea treatment that is available with a prescription from your vet. It is a broad-spectrum parasiticide that is safe and effective in controlling a variety of pests.
Revolution protects dogs from fleas and other parasites as well as providing protection from heartworms.
The products above are veterinarian recommended flea medicines for dogs. Other topical spot on products can be found in pet stores and in the pet displays of department stores but should not be confused with the items above. The cheaper commercial flea drops are of limited use and often provide little or no real protection.
To keep your dog flea free all year require a monthly application of a professional flea product that will break the life cycle of fleas and keep your pet flea free for a month after application.
By rotating the products you use to kill fleas you will keep those little parasites confused and vulnerable and give the fleas no chance to develop immunity. Shop online for discount pet medication for the best prices on all of the flea treatments listed above.