Matamata Veterinary Services | Latest News

Latest News

Attention all pet owners: Don’t let fleas win the battle this year

October 27, 2016

With a mild winter and a long hot summer on its way, fleas are gaining ground in their battle against our pets.  These conditions are perfect for a massive flea outbreak, with the population about to explode.

Only 5% of the flea population lives on the pet as an adult flea. The remaining 95% live in the environment as eggs, larvae and pupae. These concentrate around the pet’s sleeping areas in carpets, cracks between floorboards and under debris in the garden.  When conditions are favourable they then hatch and develop.

Inside, where we use heating, the flea life-cycle can continue throughout winter.  In the outdoors the life-cycle of the flea is affected by the weather.   A mild winter going in to a hot summer makes the perfect conditions for rapidly increasing numbers of fleas in the environment, which then jump onto your pets.

It is more difficult to manage fleas once the population has exploded. Inside we can use foggers, vacuum, wash bedding, carpet powders and sprays along with pet treatment.  However outside we have reduced options for control and this is where the majority of our flea burden comes from.

The most effective way to reduce the flea population explosion is to begin treating pets now.  This aims to break the cycle by reducing breeding adults. There are a wide variety of flea products on the market today including spot-on liquids, tablets, sprays and collars.  Not all products are created equal as they have different ingredients, kill for different lengths of time and kill at different points in the flea life-cycle.

A note on flea allergies: Some pets are allergic to fleas and get excessively itchy, causing damage to their skin and fur.  These pets can need medications to soothe the itch and deal with infection if present.

If you need any help battling fleas, please feel free to pop in and see our team who will be more than happy to help you select treatments suitable for you and your pet’s individual needs.