Anaemia – extreme flea burdens can cause more systemic issues in your pets. Because fleas feed on blood to survive, a big infestation can lead to anaemia (loss of red blood cells). This condition can snowball and your pet can become very sick, lethargic and require hospitalisation to fully recover.
Flea tapeworm – your pet can also get tapeworm infestation from infected fleas. When they chew or bite at their skin, they can swallow a flea. The tapeworm segments in the flea’s system are then released into the intestine where they grow into adult tapeworm. See our ‘Intestinal Worms’ section posted previously for more information about this.
What can I expect if my pet undergoes flea treatment?
Because of the vicious nature of the flea’s life cycle, it is very important to not only treat your pet, but your household too. It is recommended to follow the below protocol to ensure you have the best chance of breaking the cycle in your home:
- Vacuuming – 2-3 times a week
- Washing bedding – weekly
- Spraying inside and outside your home with an adult flea killer – weekly
- Applying flea prevention to all pets in the household – monthly, 3-monthly or 6-monthly depending on the chosen product
Other than applying a flea preventative, symptomatic treatment is usually sufficient to see out the flea infestation until it is eradicated in your household.