Author Topic: Flea meds/repellent....  (Read 6542 times)

Offline vintagerat

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Flea meds/repellent....
« on: October 24, 2009, 06:08:31 PM »
We are moving into a house with a big backyard, so little Sammy will get to have lots of outside-run time! Both neighbors have dogs right through the other side of the fence. The chainlink has the green sheets through them, so the dogs can't touch. BUT...I am worried about fleas now. In our current house, Sam is an "inside" dog...only goes outside to potty. He goes to my parent's house to run around their fenced yard a few times a month, but their house is secluded, so I wasn't worried about fleas.

I just worry now that Sam will get fleas through the fence from the neighbor dogs. I don't want to use chemicals, so can anyone recommend natural flea repellent?

Sam also isn't on any heart worm meds. He's inside all of the time and AZ really has no mosquitoes...I've honestly never seen them since I've lived here (4 years). Doesn't heartworm only come from mosquitoes, or am I mistaken....or can they get it from the dogs through the fence if they have it? I really don't want to use chemicals/unnecessary things on my dog, if I don't need to.

Any other diseases I should worry about with the other dogs being so close? Sam had all of his shots earlier this year...not sure if I will continue them, though. I was a tad pressured into getting him the last of his "puppy shots"...so I just did it.

Offline Heather

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2009, 08:13:39 PM »
Heartworms cannot be transmitted from dog to dog. I wouldn't use any type of stuff for fleas unless I actually noticed a problem. In that case I would spray the yard instead of putting stuff on my dogs. Don't assume all other dogs are diseased and flea infested until you actually see it with your own eyes. :)

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2009, 08:25:28 PM »
Heartworms cannot be transmitted from dog to dog. I wouldn't use any type of stuff for fleas unless I actually noticed a problem. In that case I would spray the yard instead of putting stuff on my dogs. Don't assume all other dogs are diseased and flea infested until you actually see it with your own eyes. :)

It just makes me nervous because I have inside cats, rabbits, and rats that I don't want getting fleas. I can't just wait until I see a flea...I don't want it to be too late and have 16 pets infested with fleas  :o.

What can I use to spray the yard? Is it really effective?


I just want to do whatever I can, so I don't have to deal with fleas & the expense along with it after 16 pets get them. I just don't want to use harsh chemicals on my pets.

Offline Heather

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2009, 11:36:53 PM »
I went to Home Depot and the salesperson helped me pick the best and safest spray for the yard since I have 2 dogs. I think it was Orkin? Don't quote me on that. You can always talk to the salesperson at your location. Any hardware store type place that sells that stuff will have people that can help you. Our yard butts right up to a heavily wooded creek and we've had fleas like.. twice in 15 years. If you keep the grass cut and dead leaves raked up where fleas like to winter in you shouldn't have a problem. If you do happen to get fleas you can always treat with some DeFlea shampoo. It's safe for all animals of all ages. I've never had fleas on rats even when we had an infestation though.

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2009, 11:56:02 PM »
Thank you, Heather! I will see about getting stuff to spray the yard. I know that my chances of fleas may be rare, but I wanted to play it safe because I can't possibly bathe my rabbits (or even cats).

Our new place is all rock/pine needles/some shrubs & grasses. Living in AZ....grass is rare, so we have rock lawns  :yelcutelaugh:.

Does he Deflea stuff make a spray or a powder? We are moving into my MIL's house for 3 years because she is moving to WI. She is leaving her male cat behind for me to take care of for 3 years (real nice, huh?). He's about 3 years old and not even neutered yet (so I am getting that done ASAP) and she lets him outside  >:(. So, I want to make sure he is flea-free before letting my animals around him. I just hope he comes out free of leukemia/aids/whatever, gets along with my kitties, and adjusts to being inside-only.

Offline Heather

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2009, 12:21:55 PM »
Deflea does make a spray. :)

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2009, 01:02:20 PM »
Thanks! I found the Deflea spray for kitties that I will use on my MIL's cat, just in case. We'll also flea killer stuff around the fence, for Sam.

Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2009, 01:22:48 PM »
I disagree with Heather. Flea and tick prevention is very important. I recommend Frontline for dogs. We live in a wooded area that has a high occurance of fleas and ticks, and we've never had a flea outbreak. On top of that, any ticks I've ever found on my dog have been dead, unless the Frontline has worn off. Some people like K9 Advantix, but since we've had our dogs, we've always used Frontline, and so I can't speak for any other product.
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Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2009, 01:26:16 PM »
I don't want to use harsh chemicals on my pets.

Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2009, 01:47:15 PM »
That's your choice. However, I think your making a mistake. Prevention is key, and will save you loads of trouble in the long run. In addition, Frontline has been proven to be safe, and is recommended by most vets.
Some people think the best way to protect animal life is to make scientists fear for theirs. Support the Foundation for Biomedical Research.

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2009, 01:54:36 PM »
I just don't want chemicals on my pets...I've heard of bad reactions from spot-on flea meds. I'd rather go an all natural way, so I am researching into that now.

Offline Heather

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #11 on: October 25, 2009, 02:35:08 PM »
I refuse to put insecticidal poison on my pet's skin. If it's so safe then why is there warnings all over the package about getting it on your own skin? Sorry, I don't believe it's safe.

http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/health/flea-tick-control.html

FWIW, vets recommend all sorts of things that are not good for dogs and cats. Dentals under anesthesia every 6 mos, food like Royal Canin and Science Diet, tooth extraction as a "solution" to aggression, ear cropping, declawing, the list goes on and on. The most important thing I've learned (and have learned the hard way) is don't be a sheep- think for yourself and don't believe what you're told until you do your own in depth research from credible sources- not from people that are making big bucks from their suggestions. Follow the money.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2009, 02:57:31 PM by Heather »

Offline Addicted2Rats

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2010, 06:26:24 PM »
The spot-on flea preventatives that you're hearing cause bad reactions are ones sold over the counter like Hartz Flea & Tick.  Those over-the-counter flea preventatives are very prone to causing major skin reactions.  Frontline is an extremely safe medication to use.  I'm a veterinary technician, and I would never recommend buying something that I thought could be unsafe for an animal.  Also, there are definitely some areas that are more prone to heartworm disease more than others.  I live in Illinois, near Chicago, and heartworm disease is VERY high here.  Yes, it is spread by bites from a mosquito, and cannot be passed from dog-to-dog without the mosquito.  I did some research just now, and it is being found that the risk of a dog contracting heartworm disease in Arizona is increasing each year as more and more people (and pets) are moving into the area.  Again, there are several very safe veterinary-prescribed medications that help prevent heartworm disease from being contracted.  HeartGard and Interceptor are two that I recommend.  It's much cheaper and safer to use those, than it would be to have to go through the process of treating a dog who ends up with heartworm disease.

Herbal or "natural" medications are often seen as being "safe" because they're not labeled as drugs.  However, everything that is applied or ingested on a pet has risks and can cause serious reactions.  In other words, *everything* has the potential of being a poison.

I personally would rather not take the risk and I keep my pets on flea preventative (Frontline Plus) and heartworm preventative (HeartGard).  I've had flea infestations and they are not fun to deal with, along with the diseases that fleas and ticks can carry and give to your pet.

Just my own two cents worth.

Deb

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #13 on: February 21, 2010, 06:39:32 PM »
Thanks, Deb! This thread is a bit old, but I'll update....

We moved into my MIL's house in early December. Her cat got all of his shots and was neutered - also had no fleas. Come to find out, even though we have a big fenced in yard....little Sammy (our dog) doesn't care to play outside in it. Granted, it has been cold here...but even on nicer days he still doesn't care to be out there...even if we play fetch. The neighbor dogs will bark when Sammy is outside and sometimes Sam will run along the fence with them a few times before I call him inside, but I don't see them as a threat anymore. They are strictly "at home" dogs because our neighbors never take them anywhere.

I decided NOT to treat Sammy with any flea preventative and I also do not treat him for heartworms. Sam is inside all the time, unless he goes outside for 5 minutes to potty. He's just an inside dog, so I don't feel the need to give him preventative meds. If I am able to bring Sam to the dog grooming shop all day with me or plan to board him there when I go away (chances of that are slim...he will stay with the parents), then I may consider medicating him. I also do not give the cats flea preventative because they are inside only.

Some may disagree with me, but I feel that this is right for my dog for the time being  :).


On the side note, Deb...which areas in AZ are said to be finding more cases of heartworm? I'm just wondering because I have never seen a mosquito here in the 4.5 years I have been here. Maybe its areas with lakes or more up North?

Offline betuana

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2010, 06:55:11 PM »
What Deb said....


Hartz is dangerous, absolutely agree. NEVER buy ANY OTC pest control product without talking to your vet. This includes shampoos, spray ons, and YARD TREATMENTS. Many of these can be dangerous to your pet, and its best to discuss it with your vet before using them.

Many of the "chemicals" and such that are in high quality preventatives (such as those recommended by vets - not all are necessarily SOLD by them, some CAN be bought OTC at other stores, such as Frontline and Advantix) are actually from natural sources. So it isn't some sort of factory produced poison...

Likewise, many "natural" things are potentially toxic and poisonous to our pets, even in small amounts. Just because it is natural, doesn't mean its SAFE.

On to heartworms: the treatment for heartworm infection involves injecting pets with high levels of poison. The idea is to get enough in to poison the heartworms, without killing the dog. Its VERY risky, VERY hard on them, and quite expensive! Preventative is relatively cheap, and very safe. Even in a low risk area, you are doing your dogs a favor by giving them preventative. The only significant risk in preventatives is if they are ALREADY heartworm positive - and if that is the case they need to be treated. This can be checked with a quick blood test during annual visits. It is very important that dogs be on preventative though. Its like parvo - its easily prevented, but hard, long, frusterating, and expensive to treat, and many animals end up dying from it. Being inside doesn't negate the risk - mosquitoes are tiny, its not hard for them to get in a house, it happens all the time. The only way to prevent it is with a preventative.

As far as vet making money...thats not ALL vets are about, and most are lucky to break even and have a bit to take a vacation, etc. They have vet school to pay off, clinics to pay for, staff to pay, insurance to pay, meds to buy, supplies to buy, equiptment to buy and maintain, continuing education classes that they are required to do....and thats just for work, then they have rent/mortgages, car payments, gas, food, kids school stuff, doctors bills, etc - just like the rest of us. Very few vets are really making big bucks - and those who are generally aren't the vets you see with your pet - they are the ones involved in big research projects, etc. Most vets are in this because they love animals, not because they expect to get rich. There are always exceptions though - some just want to get every dollar they can. If you honestly feel like your vet is just trying to raid your wallet, and force you to hand them money, I'd recommend finding a new vet that you feel is in it for the animals - your vet needs to be someone you feel you can trust, and who you can work with as a team, instead of feeling like they are someone you need to defend  yourself against. Educating yourself is good, but there is a reason they go to school for so long, and you should be able to use that to the advantage of your pets!

Just my opinions :)
« Last Edit: February 21, 2010, 06:59:36 PM by betuana »

Offline Addicted2Rats

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #15 on: February 21, 2010, 06:57:42 PM »
Here's a map that shows the incidence of heartworm disease in Arizona back in 2007.  It has gotten more prevalent since then, and I'm trying to find a more current map.  There is a pocket in the northeast corner of the state that seems to have the lowest incidence of cases.  But there definitely is heartworm disease occurring in other parts of the state.  BTW, the cost to treat heartworm disease is approximately $600-800, versus the cost to prevent it which is about $75-$100 per year (depending on the size of the dog).
http://www.yourpetsbestfriend.com/.a/6a00d8341bfe0853ef01156f8a6824970c-800wi


Deb

Offline Addicted2Rats

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2010, 07:04:08 PM »
Here's another very good map that shows the incidence of several diseases carried by ticks, mosquitoes and fleas throughout the US.  If you click on your own state, it will show the incidence of it throughout the state:

http://www.petsandparasites.org/tickmaps/tickmaps.html

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2010, 07:49:46 PM »
Like I said before...I have never seen a mosquito here. Money isn't the issue to me right now - I would gladly pay the $75 - $100 per year to treat my dog with preventative heartworm meds, but since I do not see him being a high risk, then I'd rather not put something into his body that I don't think he needs at this point in time. When we do end up moving back to the upper east coast, then I will definitely treat him because you always get bit by mosquitos out there.

Sorry, but that's what I feel about my own dog.

Offline Addicted2Rats

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2010, 07:53:49 PM »
No need to apologize.  I'm sure you love your pet.  :)

Deb

Offline Heather

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #19 on: February 22, 2010, 01:23:37 PM »
It's not just the crap from Walmart. It's ALL brands. Read the entire list from that link.. They are all on there including the "safe" ones from the vet.

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #20 on: February 22, 2010, 01:32:20 PM »
Okay, so this may be a dumb question and might not even compare, but I just thought of it  :yelcutelaugh:....

How come we "need" to get our pets shots all of the time, but yet as humans...we don't get shots all of the time? I can't even remember the last time I got a shot.

Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #21 on: February 22, 2010, 02:29:47 PM »
It's not just the crap from Walmart. It's ALL brands. Read the entire list from that link.. They are all on there including the "safe" ones from the vet.

If you read the article, it says that they've listed ALL registered brands of spot-on flea and tick medication. It also goes on to say that they're not asking for a recall, and not all of them cause adverse reactions. In actuality, the amount of dogs who have adverse reactions to GOOD flea and tick medications (i.e. Frontline) is VERY small. Most of the reactions from Frontline are small such as skin irritation. Of course if your dog has a reaction it's best to stop using the product. Do you know what goes into the treatment of Lyme's Disease? I'm sorry, but I'd rather risk "mild skin irritation" than have my dog get sick because of MY negligence and then have him go through all types of painful treatments.


How come we "need" to get our pets shots all of the time, but yet as humans...we don't get shots all of the time? I can't even remember the last time I got a shot.

The reason that we need most vaccinations just once, and dogs need them more often is because some vaccinations don't last all that long of a time. There are some vaccines that we need to get more than once. For example, Tetanus. We need to get Tetanus shots every 10 years because the vaccine doesn't last longer than that.
Some people think the best way to protect animal life is to make scientists fear for theirs. Support the Foundation for Biomedical Research.

Offline vintagerat

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #22 on: February 22, 2010, 03:15:26 PM »
For the last hour or so, I have been reading on a number of sites that shots for canines can last 7 to 10 years.

Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #23 on: February 22, 2010, 03:54:38 PM »
For the last hour or so, I have been reading on a number of sites that shots for canines can last 7 to 10 years.

It can vary from breed to breed as well as the vaccination itself. Some people recommend doing titers instead. However, this is not always cost-effective or available.
Some people think the best way to protect animal life is to make scientists fear for theirs. Support the Foundation for Biomedical Research.

Offline Kati33

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Re: Flea meds/repellent....
« Reply #24 on: February 22, 2010, 11:02:49 PM »
I'm staying out of most of this- but would just like to point out that I spent a year working in Pheonix as a vet and saw several cases of heartworms- several got treated, but one dog was so advanced the worms set her body off destroying it's own platelets and red blood cells. By the time she was diagnosed, her disease was too far advanced and she was euthanized. Not worth the risk to me (I have an epileptic who is sensitive to some things and even she gets heartworm preventative/flea preventatives). You may not see many mosquitos but they are there. And being inside doesn't make your pet safe- during vet school, two of my classmates had indoor only pets (a cat and a ferret) die from heartworm disease. Definately your choice, but I would highly recommend at least heartworm preventative.
Kati33
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