With the flea and tick season upon us, we thought it was a topic we could not avoid. No one wants to talk about these little creatures that can cause such discomfort, but prevention is key so let’s tackle it together!

There are a few things you can do to prevent these intruders from invading your home and your pet’s space.

It’s not a bad idea to regularly run a flea comb through your pet’s coat. You don’t need to wait for your dog to start scratching before checking to see if he has fleas.  If your pet does have fleas, you will be able to spot them and if not, see it as a bonus pamper session for them!

Fleas love the inside of a home; they feel protected and shielded from external elements. So, make them feel unwelcome. How? I hear you ask.

  • Vacuum and wash, that they won’t like! Vacuum carpets, furniture that is covered in fabric, as well as pet beds as often as you can.
  • Remember to empty the vacuum container often and outside of the home to make sure those little monsters don’t find their way back.
  • Wash your pet’s bedding with hot water – that should get rid of the immature fleas!
  • Remember if you do get an exterminator in the event of a bad infestation to ask for a pet-friendly option.

Ticks, on the other hand, lurk in grass or low-hanging bushes. So, keep your yard mowed and trimmed to keep them at bay. Seal open spaces where outdoor animals could nest. Remember, if you do opt for a tick yard spray, speak to your landscaper to get a pet-friendly option.

A few tips from the Petinsurance.com.au team:

  • Remember not to hold onto old products; if they have expired, they might not be effective anymore.
  • Don’t use canine treatments on felines. Each to their own as the saying goes.
  • Be careful when trying home or natural remedies. Just because it has the word natural in it, it doesn’t mean they are good for our pets.

Home remedies to avoid:

Dish Detergent – There is a reason why the word dish appears before the word detergent– that is what it should be used for! Bathing your pet in dish detergent will irritate and dry their skin out. It might also only kill adult fleas. The parasites left behind are guaranteed to breed and repopulate in your home.

Garlic – Yes it smells delicious, in food! Some believe that if you mix garlic and brewer’s yeast and let your dog eat it, it will sweat it out and the smell will repel fleas. Truth be told dogs don’t sweat like humans so that won’t be effective.  Remember, garlic is also not good for dogs so we recommend that you put it to good use and spice up your dinner.

Cider vinegar – Some believe spraying this on your pet’s bedding will repel ticks. Believe me, they don’t mind a sour smell. The only thing that could happen is to leave a sour taste in your pet’s mouth. Besides, can you imagine how sticky your furniture will be?

Baking soda – besides the obvious use for this, it is also brilliant for absorbing smells but there has been no real proof that it kills fleas by drying out their eggs and larva.

Salt – you cannot take this with a pinch of salt, but rather a truckload. The amount of salt needed to kill flea eggs and larvae is toxic for cats and dogs especially if they lick it or get it up their nose.

It is always advisable to get a remedy from your vet to get rid of ticks or fleas, especially once you discover them on your cat or dog.

Remember, VetChat is one of the non-insurance benefits you have access to as a Petinsurance.com.au customer.* Our friendly vets are only a call away if you need some advice on how to manage ticks and fleas.

Issued by The Hollard Insurance Company Pty Ltd. Consider the PDS before deciding if the product is right for you. PDS and TMD available at petinsurance.com.au

* Offer is available to customers who take out a new pet insurance policy and is limited to one membership per eligible policy. The Vetchat Services Pty Ltd (VetChat) subscription (valued at $199.95) will commence after your policy has been in force for 14 days and will last for 12 months. By taking out a policy during this time you agree to Petinsurance.com.au providing your contact details to VetChat to set up your subscription. You will hear from VetChat to set up your subscription account. VetChat subscription will no longer be active if policy is cancelled for any reason. This offer is not redeemable for cash and cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. Petinsurance.com.au reserves the right to withdraw or extend this offer at any time, without notice.

VetChat is a third-party subscription-based service independently operated from that of Petinsurance.com.au pet insurance product. Consultations are subject to VetChat’s General Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policies which are available online at www.vetchat.com.au. By accepting this service, you agree that PetSure and or Hollard and or PIPL cannot be held liable for any damage or loss arising from your reliance on the advice derived from the use of the services offered by VetChat.