San Jose Pet Parent’s Guide
Brought to you by the veterinarians and staff at Story Road Animal Hospital
Flea Control Products We Love!
(the products…not the fleas…we hate the fleas!)
by Dr. Sarah Mihalek
Do you ever get that feeling of overwhelm when shopping for your pet’s flea control products? It’s getting to be as crazy as the cereal aisle at the grocery store. Sheesh! Too many choices!
We know how you feel.
We all have pets, too.
Fleas are part of our lives at our homes and where we work here at Story Road Animal Hospital in San Jose.
With our mild climate, we often see fleas year-round. Even if you get all of the adult fleas off of your pet, the eggs and larvae can still survive in the environment (in your carpet or in your yard) for a long time.
Hello! Veterinarian Dr. Sarah here. In this blog article, let’s chat about the flea control products delivering the best results at our animal hospital, how to break the flea life cycle, and more serious skin problems occurring secondary to fleas.
“…secondary to fleas.” What does that mean?
It means that fleas (whether or not you see them on your pet) are the primary cause behind several different skin problems. Skin problems ranging from ‘hot spots’ (where your pet has licked and chewed themselves to the point bright-red raw skin is exposed) to flea allergy dermatitis, to serious skin infections often requiring antibiotics and steroids.
The key is breaking the flea life cycle.
What is the flea life cycle? See the flea life cycle here in our online library
Maintaining your pet on a monthly flea preventative not only helps to decrease the possibility of more serious skin problems, it can also help keep your pet and your family more comfortable year round.
We carry a variety of products and each will be recommended based on your individual pet’s needs and the household structure (multi-pet household, indoor-only cats, indoor/outdoor pets, etc).
For dogs, our recommendation is for Trifexis. Trifexis is an oral tablet that protects against fleas, intestinal parasites, and heartworm. Dogs on Trifexis must have a heartworm test before starting the medication and a yearly heartworm test once on the medication.
Comfortis is another oral tablet that protects against fleas. No testing is required prior to starting Comfortis.
For dogs, we recommend the Seresto collar which provides 8 months of protection from fleas and ticks.
Advantage, a topical liquid applied to the skin monthly, is another topical option.
We do not carry or recommend any other topical options as we do not feel they are as effective.
Comfortis oral tables are also available for cats. It is an oral tablet that protects against fleas. Comfortis works very well, but some pet owners find medicating cats (trying to get a cat to swallow a pill) to be more difficult than applying the topical medication to their skin.
For cats, our product of choice is Revolution, a topical liquid applied to the skin monthly. Revolution helps protect against fleas, intestinal parasites, and heartworm. Lately we are noticing the best results with this product.
Our second choice for cats is the Seresto collar. The collars last for 8 months and protect against fleas and ticks.
Currently, we are seeing better results with the oral medications, in comparison to the topical alternatives, particularly in patients with longer hair or thicker coats.
If you would like help choosing the correct flea control product for your pet and your family, please feel free to come meet me or one of our other veterinarians here at Story Road Animal Hospital. We’d be delighted to meet you and your pets.