The need for cat flea treatment may not be noticed by pet owners until the cat’s skin is badly infested with the insects. Pet owners are accustomed to the frequent grooming of their cat and may not notice the problem until there is visible loss of fur or they notice bumps on the animal’s skin.
On white or light colored felines the fleas can easily be seen scurrying around. On dark fur you may need a fine toothed flea comb to see the tiny black dots commonly referred to as flea dirt. This is actually flea excrement – a clear indication your animal has a flea problem.
Unchecked flea infestations can cause feline anemia which can be fatal in kittens. If your cat has been heavily infested with fleas, pale gums can be signal of anemia caused by loss of blood. A more serious type of feline anemia is caused by a microorganism transmitted by fleas. This severe form of anemia may require antibiotics and steroids. In the most serious cases, blood transfusions may be recommended by your veterinarian.
Tapeworm is a common consequence of fleas on cats. Kittens are prone to worms and are often dewormed routinely. Older cats may exhibit dull coat, weight loss and appear lethargic when tapeworms are present. For the owner, the appearance of small white specks around the anus are a clear symptom of tapeworm. Your veterinarian can provide a small pill that will effectively kill tapeworms. Controlling fleas on your pet will prevent tapeworms in the future.
Fleas will make your cat itchy and uncomfortable and can lead to further skin problems and infections. Topical flea treatments such as Advantage, Frontline and Revolution can totally eliminate the flea problem for cat owners.
Advantage was the first widely used veterinarian recommended topical flea treatment. It is generally regarded as safe for adult cats and for kittens over 6 weeks old. Advantage is an effective and cost effective flea control medication.
Frontline for Cats kills fleas on your pet in twelve hours and also protects from ticks and lice. The spray version of Frontline may be less expensive for those who have a multiple cat household but the topical drops are more popular as they are easier to apply.
The introduction of Revolution provided a medication that would control fleas but also some ticks and ear mites and provide protection against heartworm. Revolution is a systemic product that remains in the cat’s bloodstream and some animals will have an allergic reaction to it. This flea prevention medication is available only through a veterinarian and provides complete parasite control as it also prevents hookworm and roundworm.
Although both Advantage and Frontline products are offered by pet stores both offline and online, it is recommended that you purchase directly from a veterinarian. It is important to buy products that are well within the expiration dates and avoid cheap imitations that are packaged to look like the original product but are ineffective and could harm your cat.
Topical flea treatment for cats remains effective for up to a month and kills new fleas as they hatch. Fleas lay their eggs on your cat or dog and the insects may go through the entire life cycle on your pet.
Other eggs may drop off onto carpeting or pet beds or on the cushions of your couch. Stopping the flea cycle requires eliminating the flea population on your cat, preventing newly hatched fleas from maturing and controlling any fleas in your home. There are insect sprays specifically formulated to kill fleas on furniture and powders that can be sprinkled on carpets. After a few minutes, vacuuming the carpet removed the powder and the dead fleas.
Steam cleaning carpet and furniture and frequently washing cat beds is effective in preventing fleas from establishing a colony in your home. The low cost topical flea treatments for cats are available online and are inexpensive to use.
Applying the topical flea treatment for cats is as simple as placing a few drops of the medicine on the top of the cat’s neck. The only caution is to put the drops where the cat cannot reach them or lick them off. Chances are your cat won’t notice the flea drops when you apply them, but within 24 hours the fleas will be gone. Combing with a fine toothed flea comb will remove the dead fleas and flea dirt from your cat’s coat.