Many owners report the product works well and lasts into the fourth week after application. Does a great job of repelling ticks, and discourages fleas as well.
Treatment, like others, doesn’t always last the full month. Some sensitivity and a few adverse reactions in dogs reported by owners. Doesn’t work at all for some.
Generally works well throughout the one-month treatment period to repel fleas and ticks. Irritation on application is minimal for many dogs, owners report.
Some owners report the topical treatment is not always effective. A few reports of irritation or other adverse reactions after application.
In addition to killing and preventing fleas and ticks, this preventative does a good job of deterring flies and mosquitos. Long-lasting. More affordable than some brands with better name recognition.
Although quite effective, it may not work on all dogs. Several dogs experienced skin irritation after use.
Kills most fleas quickly and stops the cycle that leads to repeat infestations. Effective at killing various types of ticks. Comes at a price that's lower than some top brands.
May cause side effects if not used as directed — a common concern with this type of treatment. Some reports of skin irritation after use. May not control all flea infestations.
Works quickly in most cases to stop flea infestations. Kills fleas in all stages, including eggs and larvae. Prevents new flea infestations when used properly.
Some reports of live fleas soon after treatment. Not formulated to kill ticks.
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For many people, dogs really are man’s best friend – which is why we go to such great lengths to take care of them. But as much as you might worry about what you feed your favorite four-legged pal or what leash works best for those long walks, you definitely shouldn’t overlook the importance of finding a good flea and tick prevention product for Fido.
That’s because the right flea and tick prevention product can keep your dog safe from pests that could potentially cause health issues. Fleas and ticks could be lurking just about anywhere your buddy plays and spends time with other dogs – on walks, at the park, in the yard.
There are so many flea and tick products on the market for dogs today that choosing the best option can get a little overwhelming. Which formula is right for your particular pet? At BestReviews, we can answer this and other questions you may have about selecting a flea and tick prevention product for your dog.
Fleas and ticks pose fairly significant risks to your dog’s health. Both types of insects are parasites that feed on dog blood, but the negative effects of each insect are different.
Many dogs are allergic to flea saliva. These poor pups experience severe itching and scratching when they have an infestation. A dog with a particularly bad reaction could scratch his skin raw, causing scabs that could actually become infected.
Fleas can also cause internal issues for your pet. If fleas are swallowed, the dog could develop tapeworms, which are another parasite that cause dogs to lose weight and become malnourished. Some small or young dogs can develop anemia due to a lowered red blood cell count from flea bites. If left untreated, the anemia could be fatal. Fortunately, treatment from a veterinarian can reverse the condition if received promptly.
Ticks can cause skin redness and irritation in dogs at the site where they feed. If the ticks are allowed to feed for too long, the dog could also develop anemia.
However, there are even more severe health risks posed by ticks. The bite from some female ticks could result in a rare form of paralysis in some dogs. But it’s Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever that are the biggest health risks for dogs with ticks. Lyme disease can cause a dog to develop arthritis and swelling in the joints, making it difficult to get around. Rocky Mountain spotted fever can also make it difficult for your dog to walk; it can also cause fever and other symptoms.
Fleas and ticks are a hazard for most dogs, but certain factors increase the risk.
Location: If you live in a warm, humid area, your dog is at greater risk for flea and tick issues. This type of climate is an ideal environment for the pesky parasites. Don’t think you’re off the hook if you live in a cooler climate, though; fleas and ticks are found in all 50 states.
Season: Fleas and ticks are usually a greater problem in the spring and summer months due to the warmer weather. But you shouldn’t let your guard down in the fall and winter; they can hang around in garages, under decks, and even on wild animals.
Local wildlife: Animals like rats, raccoons, opossums, and feral cats and dogs are known carriers of fleas and ticks. If you have these types of wildlife in your area, your dog is at greater risk.
Habits: Any dog that spends time outdoors is at risk for flea and tick exposure. If you send your dog to the groomer, boarding kennel, or doggie daycare, there’s a risk of an infestation there, too.
When you’re choosing a flea and tick prevention product for your dog, the first question to ask is how it works. Always read the fine print so you know what type of prevention a product offers. Flea and tick formulas typically offer one of the following functions.
Repel ticks and fleas: Some flea and tick prevention products work to keep the bugs from attaching themselves to your dog in the first place.
Kill immature insects: Some flea and tick prevention products destroy immature fleas and ticks before they have a chance to reproduce and infest your dog.
Kill adult insects: Some flea and tick prevention products destroy fully grown fleas and ticks that have attached to your dog.
Combination: Some flea and tick prevention products repel, kill immature insects, and kill adult insects for total control of a flea and tick problem.
A product that prevents flea and tick prevention in all three ways is usually the most effective. However, if you’re unsure what formula would be best for your dog, it’s a good idea to talk to your veterinarian.
When you choose a flea and tick prevention product for your dog, it’s important to choose an option that targets the insect species in your area. There are actually hundreds of flea and tick species across the world, so not every product may address your particular issues.
Talk to your veterinarian to determine what insect species are found in your area. Then, check the labels on any products you’re considering to verify that they can handle the ticks and fleas in your area.
If you’re unsure what species your dog is exposed to, look for a flea and tick prevention product that offers broad-spectrum protection against a variety of species.
Flea and tick prevention products are available in a variety of forms that can all help protect your dog. The most common types include the following.
Oral medication: Flea and tick prevention products in pill and tablet form have become extremely popular. They’re highly effective, and you don’t have to worry about the treatment washing or rubbing off. However, oral prevention products can sometimes cause side effects like nausea. They’re best given with food.
Topical medication: If your dog doesn’t take medication well, a spot treatment or topical flea and tick prevention product may be a better option. These products are applied directly to the dog’s skin, usually along the back, where they are absorbed into the body. They can be very effective, but some owners have difficulty applying them.
Collar: Flea and tick collars are a traditional prevention option. You don’t have to apply anything to your dog or fight with her to take a pill; you simply fasten the collar around her neck. Flea/tick collars are not as effective as oral or topical treatments, however. In general, they’re best used in combination with another prevention product.
It’s important to consider how long a flea and tick prevention product will work for your dog and how often he would need to be treated. Most oral and topical products require monthly treatments, while collars can offer protection for several months. Shampoos offer the shortest protection, usually lasting only a day.
Dog flea and tick prevention products range in price based on the type and how many applications are included. In general, you can expect to spend between $6 and $60 on a six- to eight-month supply.
Shampoo: Dog flea and tick prevention shampoos usually range from $8 to $22.
Collar: Dog flea and tick prevention collars usually range from $6 to $55.
Topical: Dog flea and tick prevention topical treatments usually range from $10 to $60.
Q. How important are my dog’s age and weight when I’m selecting a flea and tick prevention product?
A. Indeed, these are important factors to consider. You want to make sure your dog is at an appropriate age to use the product. In most cases, the dog should be at least six weeks old, but consult with your veterinarian to make sure your puppy is a good candidate. If your dog is the right age, it’s also important to consider his weight when choosing a topical or oral option. Larger dogs need a stronger dose, while smaller dogs should get a weaker dose to prevent side effects.
Q. What might cause a topical flea and tick prevention product to be ineffective?
A. A topical treatment may not be effective if you apply it to the dog’s hair rather than his skin. The treatment must be fully absorbed through the skin to work properly. However, you shouldn’t rub it in, as you could inadvertently absorb it through your own skin.
Before applying a topical product, check that your dog’s skin is soft and healthy. If the skin is thick, dry, or rough, the treatment may not be properly absorbed.
Q. Can I use my dog flea and tick prevention product on a cat?
A. No. Flea and tick prevention products are designed for specific species, so you should not use your dog’s treatment on your cat. Cats are actually more sensitive to the treatments, so they may get sick if you use a canine version.