As we move into fall and cooler weather, do not forget to continue to protect your pets against fleas, ticks and heartworm disease.
Fleas and ticks can be most active in September and October, because they are laying eggs and seeking hosts to carry them through the winter. Fleas carry diseases such as Cat Scratch Fever, Plague, Rickettsiosis, and Tapeworms. Fleas can also cause Anemia and Flea Allergy Dermatitis. Ticks carry diseases such as Lyme Disease, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, Anaplasmosis, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.
Look for fleas and ticks everyday as you brush, pet or play with your cat or dog. Pay particular attention to the head, neck, paws and hindquarters. If you suspect fleas or find a tick, contact your vet immediately. Your veterinarian can help you determine the best preventative for your pet as well as the appropriate dosing and administration. Be careful with over the counter products. For example, there are many topical products for dogs that can be fatal to cats.
Continue your monthly flea/tick preventative until freezing weather, usually November. If you travel to warmer climates with your pet over the winter, or if you plan to kennel your dog or cat, it is best to continue the flea/tick preventative for longer. Heartworm preventative should be continued every month year round, even if the weather is cold, because it continues to work on past exposures to keep your dog safe against a potentially fatal disease.