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OPVMC Pet Health Care Includes Flea & Tick Prevention & Treatment

pet health

Caring, responsible pet owners try to keep their pets healthy and happy, free of fleas and ticks. Fleas and ticks on your pet are not only distasteful but can carry disease, cause great discomfort, and be the source of irritating allergic reactions or other parasites.

Your Orchard Park Veterinary Medical Center offers help in the prevention and treatment of fleas, ticks, and other external parasites on your animal companion.

Tick-Borne Diseases

Ticks can attach to your pets as they walk through grass or woods, although they can be found in almost any location or climate. Some tick bites are harmless, but many cause anemia, skin damage, irritation, and hypersensitivity. Common tick-borne diseases include Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever, serious or even fatal if left untreated.

Symptoms of Tick-Borne Disease

Many pets that have been bitten by a tick will not contract a disease; some that do test positive may be asymptomatic, meaning that despite having a tick-borne disease, they show no symptoms of illness.

Common symptoms of tick-borne disease are arthritis, lameness, depression, and loss of appetite, as well as weakness, a cough, labored breathing, fatigue, and discharge from the nose or eyes. If any of these symptoms occur, regardless of whether or not your pet was bitten by a tick, contact our office as soon as possible.

Fleas Make Pets & People Miserable

Before fleas reach adulthood, they’ve gone through three other life stages: egg, larvae, and pupae. Depending on environmental conditions, it can take between two weeks and eight months for a flea egg to reach adulthood, although the average is probably three to four weeks in most homes. That means that while the fleas might be dead today, in as little as two weeks your home and your pet could be re-infested with hungry adult fleas.

Adult fleas cannot survive or lay eggs without a blood meal, but may live from two months to one year without feeding. In just 30 days, 10 female fleas under ideal conditions can multiply to over a quarter million different life stages.

Detecting & Treating Pests

We encourage you to have your pet examined regularly to check for fleas. They are difficult to find but you can see them scurrying about on the skin, especially on the abdomen and on the head. You may also use a fine-toothed comb over your pet and look for “flea dirt” resembling black coffee grounds. These particles are a sure sign of fleas!

Our veterinarians work with you to prescribe a treatment or preventive program for managing flea problems on your pet and in the environment. Remember, if even one flea or flea dirt is seen on your pet, your home has many more pests just waiting for a meal.

For guidance in choosing the appropriate flea and tick products, contact our office .