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Safe Pets Trust

Columbia, Missouri  
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Fleas, ticks and mosquitoes - oh my!
Medication/prevention tips

Fleas and other insects have been particularly problematic this year. They are difficult to eradicate. The single largest problem with fleas is their four-stage life cycle. While you may not have an active flea problem or if you keep your pets indoors most of the time, the pupa stage may be dormant for years. Squirrels are notorious flea carriers and homes with bird feeding stations also draw fleas on the visiting birds.

For more information about these pests and the most effective solutions visit:

* aspca.org/pet-care/general-pet-care/fleas-and-ticks
* thespruce.com/best-methods-to-control-fleas-3385257

flea larva
Flea larva

Once monthly flea treatments are roughly 90 percent effective and the veterinarian version of Advantage, Frontline and similar treatments are now available over counter. Be sure to follow directions precisely and never administer canine flea treatment to a cat; it is toxic. Heed instructions and warnings specific to kittens or smaller cats.

Ticks and mosquitoes also require consideration. If you find a tick on a pet your best action is take it to a veterinary clinic for removal. Should you feel confident about removing the tick without leaving the head embedded remember to keep the tick in a plastic bag or container for several days in the fridge. This is handy to give to your veterinarian should the bite become inflamed/infected or your pet acts lethargic or ill. Find out more at:

* petmd.com/dog/parasites/how-to-remove-a-tick-from-dog-cat
* cdc.gov/ticks/avoid/on_pets.html

adult flea
Adult flea




Mosquitoes primary threat is heartworm. Though predominantly found in dogs, cats may also be infected and there is no treatment for feline heartworm. The best advice is to prevent mosquitoes from getting in your home, remove all stagnant water around your doors and walk dogs during early morning, mid-day and later evening to avoid the sunset feeding frenzy. Learn more at:

* heartwormsociety.org/pet-owner-resources

dog tick
Dog tick