One of the benefits of living in the desert is that we have far, far fewer problems with fleas and ticks than most areas of the United States. While fleas might occasionally be picked up in damp basements, and ticks may be found around Mt. Charleston, these little critters don’t do well in our typically hot and dry climate.
Of course, this good fortune goes out the window when traveling. In particular, many Nevada residents head to the west coast for vacation or to visit family. In California, fleas and ticks are a much bigger problem, so you’ll want to prepare your furry friend.
See below for the three most common methods of preventing fleas and ticks.
Flea & Tick Collars
Collars can be helpful as added protection, but they typically don’t work well as a sole method of prevention, especially with heavier flea and tick burdens.
If your dog already has fleas, then a collar isn’t going to treat the infestation. The fleas will probably just move to your pup’s hindquarters.
Example Products: Seresto, Sentry
Topical treatments are typically applied once every 4-8 weeks as a gel or liquid down the center of your dog’s back. These medications are effective to treat and then repel fleas and ticks.
The biggest downside to topical medications is that they leave your dog’s back greasy for several days, and while still wet, may be absorbed by anyone who touches your dog.
Example Products: Frontline and Advantix
The newest category of flea and tick prevention is monthly oral medication. These medications have been proven safe and effective for dogs over 6 months old, and side effects are uncommon.
Oral medications are an excellent option because they are highly effective, convenient, and do not expose people or other animals to medications like collars and topical treatments do.
Example Products: Simparica, Bravecto
Talk to Your Vet
If you are planning on traveling with your furry friend, then be sure to discuss your plans with your vet. Along with fleas and ticks, new places can bring increased risks of other parasites and infectious diseases. Beyond flea and tick control, other preventive medications or vaccinations may be recommended.
As always, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.