908-332-5057

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Belle Mead, NJ, 08502

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Fleas on Cats - Get Information and Treatment

The Dangers Of Fleas For Cats

Of all the pesky nuisances out there your cat might face, fleas are one of the most troublesome. For cats, fleas pose a variety of potential health issues, including:

  • Skin irritation
  • Itching
  • Rashes & Skin Infections
  • Transmission of disease and illness
  • Suffering

Another danger of fleas for cats is infestation of the home and possible transmission of disease to humans through sharing a living space. Many people believe that indoor cats are somehow immune to fleas, but this is not true. Fleas can enter homes on visiting pets and people's clothes. Fleas will seek out your cat to feed and live. Once a flea is on your cat, it stays and will produce 30-50 eggs within 24 hours. These eggs are the consistency of sand and will fall off the cat, land in the carpet or bedding and become an adult flea in 14 to 365 days depending upon the environmental conditions. It is easy to understand how the house can become quickly infested with fleas.

This is why flea prevention is important for every cat. Prevention helps reduce the risk of exposure to both your cat and your home.

Flea Prevention For Cats

At Harlingen Veterinary Clinic when it comes to fleas, our primary focus is on prevention. Prevention is important because it stops a serious problem before it starts. If you are starting to notice signs and symptoms of fleas, that indicates that you are already dealing with an infestation. It is best to not reach that stage. With good education, and the right prevention products, you can easily avoid a flea infestation.

A proactive approach to flea prevention starts with a discussion about various factors that play a role in your pet's potential exposure to fleas. For example, if your cats are indoor/outdoor is a factor, as well as whether they are exposed to other animals that go outside (including pets of friends or family that may come over for a visit).

It is important to be aware that there are numerous products on the market that our veterinarians would strongly suggest you avoid. Every year, our veterinarians review all available flea products to ensure that our recommendations are as up to date as possible. Our considerations include safety, effectiveness, and cost. Based on these factors we will work with you to customize a parasite prevention plan for your pets and family.

Signs That Your Cat May Have A Flea Infestation

  • Visible fleas
  • Scratching
  • Red or irritated skin
  • Scabs and/or flakes
  • Excessive grooming

Common Cat Flea Treatments

There are many different cat flea treatment products on the market. This includes a plethora of remedies involving substances that have no medical validity where fleas for cats are concerned. Our veterinarians would strongly recommend against numerous over the counter flea treatments. Some common cat flea treatment methods include:

  • Oral Tablets: These are a great choice for both prevention and treatment of fleas, while being safe for both your cat and your family. Oral tablets that treat fleas can only be obtained from your veterinarian.
  • Spot-On Flea Treatments: There are many different spot-on flea treatments with varying effectiveness and different spectrums of use. At your next veterinary appointment, we will help you choose the most effective spot-on flea treatment for your cat.
  • Cat Flea Collars, Powders and Sprays: We do not recommend the use of flea collars, powders or sprays. While these products were the mainstay of flea control in past years, they are more toxic and less effect than the products we currently recommend.

We choose the products based upon safety and efficacy. However, as with any new medication or product there is a possibility of adverse reaction. If you notice any discomfort or behavioral changes after administering or applying, please call us at: 908-332-5057. It is essential to discuss cat flea treatment options with your veterinarian, in order to ensure the method you choose will be safe and effective for your feline friend.

Some dog products are lethal to cats so please make sure you are using a product specifically made for cats.

What You Should Know About Cat Flea Prevention/Treatment

There are many different remedies and methods out there for treating fleas on cats, and there are also various over-the-counter cat flea medicine options on the market today. The rapid influx of so many untested cat flea medicine brands in the early 2000's, and specifically spot-on treatments, led the Environmental Protection Agency to issue a warning in 2010 about possible toxic reactions to cat flea medicine. This resulted from an increase in cat fatalities attributed to the inappropriate use of some products.

Link to EPA webpage article from AVMA.org

Schedule An Appointment To Properly Address Cat Fleas

To ensure that your cat is protected against these pesky parasites, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible. Our veterinarians and support staff have extensive experience in both prevention and treatment, and we are here to help.

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