Flea and tick season is right around the corner, and veterinarians say it's time to begin taking early precautions with your pets this year.
As the weather starts to warm, bears aren't the only thing coming out of hibernation; fleas and ticks are as well. It's important to take the right precautions to keep your furry friend safe.
Richard Schwahn, a veterinarian of Altitude Veterinary Hospital says, "when it comes to the spring and summer time here in wyoming, we tend to see an increase in the intestinal parasites and definitely fleas and ticks."
When it comes to the intestinal parasites, they do stick around year round, but there's a clear increase in the spring and summer.
"It'd be best just to have a flea or tick product on your pet, cat or dog, and avoid the exposure."
While you want to make sure your pet is protected, its just as important to make sure you're using the right product. Schwahn says, "I recommend the spot-ons and there's also some chewables. There's a new product out there that is chewable."
Doug Taylor, Casper resident and owner of two dogs and a cat says, "occasionally we'll use like a flea and tick collar, but not that often cause, they don't really seem to work that well."
Another reason some people don't like flea and tick collars on their pets is because they give off a strong odor, and in that case, there's an effective alternative.
Schwahn says "Frontline is really one of the premiere products that's out there. Then also, Nexguard is the new one. It's by the makers of Frontline and that's the one that's chewable."
Some experts say it's best to treat your pets for fleas and ticks year-round. Taylor says "I mean it's a good idea, that way you get into a routine and you don't have to do anything different, it's just automatic."
And despite what some may think, fleas and ticks are not the most common parasite for household pets.
Schwahn continues, "parasites that we see most of are roundworms, the intestinal parasites, and some tapeworms. And then, periodically we'll see giardia. And all those three things I've mentioned are zoanotic in that people can get those too."
And to avoid any serious problems with your pet this season, veterinarians suggest a once-a-month de-wormer that will help with the intestinal parasites, and also prevent any heartworm issues.
And although, dogs are more prone to get fleas or ticks, it's important to also treat your cats as they can get them as well.
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