If you're a responsible pet parent, chances are you regularly treat your dog or cat with anti-flea medications. These treatments can come in the form of a collar, pill, or topical application, but they all have one thing in common: they can begin to not work as well as they once did. If you suspect that your anti-flea treatment isn't working properly, read on to learn why this happens and what you can do about it:
What Anti-Flea Treatments Do
Regardless of the type of anti-flea treatment you're using, they all work in the same way. Anti-flea treatments repel new fleas, kill fleas that are already on your pet, and prevent flea eggs from hatching. They generally provide excellent protection from fleas and the diseases they can carry. However, anti-flea treatments can't promise to kill every single flea in existence. When this happens, it can eventually cause a lot of problems down the line.
Why They Aren't As Effective After Time Passes
When you treat your pet with an anti-flea treatment, chances are it will kill the vast majority of fleas. However, if just one flea survives, it will pass down its genetic information to a new generation of fleas. Unfortunately, fleas breed extremely quickly and produce a huge number of offspring. If the flea that survived has a genetic abnormality that allows it to survive anti-flea treatments, it could potentially pass that down to later generations. They will then survive to reproduce themselves, and so on until you have a myriad of fleas that are no longer harmed by the anti-flea treatment you're using on your pet. What once was extremely successful in killing fleas is now barely getting rid of any of them.
What To Do
If you think that this problem has happened to you, you should consult with a veterinarian. Vets see pets every single day and quickly notice patterns between specific flea treatments being used and pets who still have fleas. They will be able to recommend an anti-flea treatment for your pet that will get the job done and successfully repel and kill nearly all fleas once again.
In the future, it may be necessary for you to regularly cycle out the anti-flea treatments you use on your pet. Doing so can help to reduce the amount of fleas that survive since a flea that survives one treatment may not be able to make it through a different kind of treatment. This can help to keep fleas from building a resistance to any one anti-flea product.
Fleas are disgusting pests that should be kept away from your pets at all costs. If you're worried about your pet being overrun with fleas, talk to a veterinarian for more advice on what to do. Contact a local animal hospital for more information and assistance.