Even though we’ve had a couple of recent cold snaps, Spring is definitely pushing through and a rise in temperature means an increase in outdoor flea activity as we approach the warmer months of the year. Make sure your cat is protected against these unpleasant parasites. Not only are fleas itchy, but they can cause skin allergies (flea-allergic dermatitis), transmit disease and in kittens, can lead to anaemia and weakness and in some cases, sadly even death. Did you know that fleas can also carry the larval form of tapeworm which cats can contract by ingesting fleas when grooming?
So how do you know if your cat has fleas? It can be really difficult to spot adult fleas on your cat given that cats are meticulous groomers. You’re more likely to notice your cat repeatedly scratching, or bites on your own ankles. If your cat has fleas, flea eggs will have shed and hatched in your carpets and soft furnishings as well as on your cat! A good test for fleas is to groom your feline friend with a fine toothed flea comb over a sheet of white paper and see if any fleas or flea dirt appears. You can see what flea dirt (flea excrement containing digested blood) looks like in the accompanying photo, and if you place it on damp cotton wool, it will slowly dissolve leaving reddy-brown marks. Remember, if your cat does have fleas, you’ll need to treat your home too!
There are lots of flea treatments on the market, but some are more effective than others and will prevent a range of other parasites using your cat as dinner too! Please do give us a ring to ask for best advice, and ask us about our parasite treatment home delivery service with free postage too. A convenient way to keep your cat’s parasite treatment programme on track and to avoid your cat – and your home – becoming a flea hotel!