As cat veterinarians, one of the most important feline health issues we communicate to all of our patients is flea and tick prevention.
Fleas and ticks can cause many health problems for our furry friends, including skin irritation, anemia, and the transmission of dangerous diseases.
Unfortunately, these parasites are quite common, and can be challenging to control. That’s why it’s essential to stay on top of flea and tick prevention, not just during peak flea and tick season, but year-round.
To make sure you’re well-prepared to keep your cat as healthy as possible, we’re answering some of the most common questions about flea and tick prevention for cats and kittens. Whether you’re a seasoned cat owner or a new kitten parent, read on to learn more about flea and tick prevention for cats.
Answering Your Questions About Flea And Tick Prevention For Cats
How do fleas and ticks affect cats?
Fleas and ticks are parasites that feed on the blood of animals, and that includes cats and kittens.
They can cause a variety of health problems, including skin irritation, itching, and the transmission of diseases.
What diseases or medical conditions can be caused by fleas and ticks?
Fleas and ticks can transmit a variety of diseases and medical conditions to both pets and humans.
These can include Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis, Anaplasmosis, Tularemia, Bartonellosis, and more. In addition to diseases, flea and tick infestations can cause anemia, skin infections, and other health problems.
Are there cat shots that help with flea and tick prevention?
There are currently no vaccines or shots available for flea and tick prevention in cats.
However, there are a variety of other preventative options that are highly effective in controlling flea and tick infestations in cats.
What is flea and tick preventative for cats?
Flea and tick preventative for cats are medications that are designed to protect cats from flea and tick infestations.
These medications work by killing fleas and ticks on contact or preventing them from biting your cat, and they include topical spot-on treatments, oral medications, flea collars, and sprays.
Should I keep my cat on flea and tick preventative?
Yes, it is recommended to keep your cat on flea and tick preventative year-round to protect them from these parasites.
Even indoor pets can be at risk for flea and tick infestations, as these parasites can enter your home on other pets or on your clothing.
When is my kitten old enough to start on flea and tick preventative?
Kittens around 8 to 10 weeks of age and about 2 pounds can receive topical flea treatments.
This will help to not only eliminate any fleas they may have, but also serves as tick prevention.
How can I tell if my cat or kitten has fleas or ticks?
You may be able to see fleas or ticks on your cat’s fur or skin, especially around the neck, ears, and tail.
If you find that your cat is also scratching or grooming excessively, then that can be a sign of fleas or ticks, too.
What are the best non-medicinal ways to prevent fleas and ticks on my cat or kitten?
There are several effective ways to prevent fleas and ticks on your cat or kitten, including using flea and tick collars, keeping your cat indoors, and regularly grooming your cat.
How often should I apply flea and tick prevention medication to my cat or kitten?
The frequency of flea and tick medication application can vary depending on the product you are using. Some products may require a monthly application, while others may last for up to 3 months.
Are there any side effects of flea and tick prevention medication?
Some cats may experience side effects from flea and tick prevention medication, such as vomiting, diarrhea, or lethargy.
If you notice any unusual behavior or symptoms after giving your cat medication, contact your cat veterinarian immediately.
Can flea and tick prevention medication be used on pregnant or nursing cats?
Some flea and tick prevention medications are safe for use on pregnant or nursing cats, while others are not. It’s important to speak with your feline veterinarian first before starting any prevention medication for pregnant or nursing cats.
What should I do if my cat or kitten gets fleas or ticks despite prevention efforts?
If your cat or kitten gets fleas or ticks despite prevention efforts, contact your local cat veterinarian for advice on the best treatment options. It’s possible to try a different type of prevention medication or prescribe medication to treat the infestation.
Can my cat’s fleas affect us?
Yes, your cat’s fleas can affect your family. Fleas can bite humans as well as pets, causing itchy and uncomfortable bites.
In some cases, fleas can also transmit diseases to humans, such as murine typhus, tapeworms, and cat scratch fever.
How can I protect myself and my family from flea and tick bites?
It’s important to take flea prevention seriously not just for the health of your cat, but for the health of your entire household.
By treating your cat for fleas and keeping your home clean and treated for fleas, you can help prevent the spread of fleas to your family members and keep everyone safe and healthy.
How The Catonsville Cat Clinic Can Help You With Tick Prevention For Cats
If you need help managing your cat’s flea and tick preventive medication, don’t hesitate to contact us at Catonsville Cat Clinic.
As your trusted cat veterinarian, we are here to help you choose the best flea and tick prevention options for your cat and provide you with the guidance and resources you need to keep your feline friend healthy and happy. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.