It’s time to talk about flea control. As the temperatures warm up, so does the flea population. Take care to treat your yard, pets and home for fleas, to ensure a happy and healthy summer for humans and furry friends alike.
Fleas in the Yard:
Fleas like temperatures below 95°F with humidity above 50%. As usual, it’s better to prevent them than to remove them. Fleas are brought in by the urban wildlife like rabbits, rats, squirrels, raccoons, etc. If you feed the bird you’re also feeding the critters (with the fleas!!) that visit the bird feeders. So, if you have a flea problem and feed the birds, stop feeding for a month or so to get the problem under control.
If you have fleas, treat the yard and your pets, see the section “Fleas on the dog/cat”. You need to treat both the yard, the pet and the house within a 24 hour period. When fighting fleas it is all about breaking the life cycle. There are a bunch of all-natural and synthetic products to choose from. Most products will take more than one application, 5 to 10 days apart to break that life cycle.
Our number one all natural product for outdoor flea control is Mosquito Beater, but remember it is a repellant, not a killer. This innovative granular repellent infuses your lawn with natural oils that drive mosquitoes away. It lasts for weeks, even if it rains. It contains potent oils of geranium, lemongrass and cedar, and decomposes into a beneficial soil conditioner. One application can cover 4,000 square feet. Diatomaceous Earth is also a good all natural flea control option that is safe for pets.
There are also quite a few choices on the chemical side in both liquid and granulated. A good rule of thumb is to pick products with an active ingredient that ends with the suffix, “thrin”. Some of the most common are bifenthrin, cyfluthrin, permethrin and my favorite product, lambda-cyhalothrin, is the active ingredient in Cyonara. This quart attaches to the hose and will cover about 8,000 square feet. As always please read and follow all label direction.
Fleas on the dog/cat:
One day everything is fine, and the next your pet is scratching like crazy. What is that bite on my leg?! Oh no! The dreaded flea infestation! Don’t worry, there are many solutions to get rid of these pesky parasites.
Sprays, dips, shampoos, flea collars, and room foggers for the house. Seresto Flea and Tick collars offer 8 months of protection for your pet.
New Braunfels Feed & Supply also carries monthly spot-on treatments by Advantage, Advantix, FLEE and Frontline. (Please note that if you use spot-on treatments that you will NOT be able to use any other chemical options for the rest of the month without the risk of poisoning your pet) You CAN spot treat with natural options though. When using spot-on treatments the fleas do not die until they actually bite the animal in most cases. To prevent these not quite dead pests, you can spray the animal down with a natural product before coming into the house.
The final option for flea control products are ones that you can only get at the vet. These products include spot-on and oral products. When used on a monthly basis these products are very effective for controlling parasites of all kinds. If interested in this type of solution consult your own vet, or come see the Mobile Pet Care Clinic of Texas that comes to the store one Saturday a month from 9-4.
The old saying that “A stitch in time saves 9” is a very true statement in regard to flea prevention and you’re pet. Preventative measures will help ensure a flea free pet and house. A flea free pet is a healthier and happier pet.