Posted in Dog, Dog Health, KoKo

Fleas – dogs pest beasties

I hate fleas. They make me scratch and I can’t concentrate on playing.

Here is a message from Wembley Vet Hospital. Woofs from KoKo

“This summer we’ve seen an increase in enquiries from clients about fleas and flea control. Perth has a perfect climate for fleas and the recent warmth and rain is bound to make things worse and not better. So this month we thought we would feature a reminder about fleas and their clever biology.

The most important concept when it comes to controlling fleas is to understand that we are not just trying to tackle the adult Flea!

The flea life cycle includes the adult flea, egg, larva, and pupa. Adult fleas do bite but cannot survive long if they are not on the dog or cat. Once the adult flea lays its eggs on the host it will fall off, leaving the eggs to go through the rest of their life cycles.

That lifecycle involves the egg hatching and moving through 3 different larval stages. The larvae look like tiny little worms that are about 1-3 mm long. These guys can crawl down under bedding, or deep into carpets, or off into cracks in the flooring or garden. This stage lasts up to 10 days.

From there, they spin themselves a web-like cocoon and can sit dormant for up to 6 months.  This pupae stage is resistant to environmental damage. They can hang around, waiting for the vibrations from pet or human movement before hatching out. This is why, if you have ever gone on holiday, when you come home, you suddenly seem to get a lot of fleas.

To adequately control fleas in your environment, you often need to tackle all stages of the life-cycle. This generally involves treating ALL the pets in the household. Did you know that about 90% of fleas found on dogs, are actually the cat variety of flea!!!

You will need to use a product that kills them WITHIN HOURS so that the flea doesn’t get a chance to feed or lay eggs.  You will need to treat ALL members of the pet household.  You may need to look at treating the environment, or else, waiting for the pets to collect up all the fleas that hatch out of the pupae stage and kill them with whatever product you choose to use.

Why control fleas you say? Flea bite hypersensitivity and flea allergic dermatitis is the most common skin disease in pets. And although the allergies usually develop when dogs and cats are young, flea allergies can begin at any age. It is the saliva from the flea that is actually believed to be the cause of the allergy or sensitivity.”

If you need advice on a safe and effective flea control product for your household, then contact

Wembley Veterinary Hospital