Why it’s so important to keep up to date with worming and flea treatments Posted on June 24, 2019 As a responsible pet owner, you’re well aware of your duty to protect your pet from fleas and worms with frequent treatments. But have you ever wondered why it’s so important to do? What are the dangers of our pets becoming infected with these parasites? Why are their regular treatments so vital to our pet’s health? What else can we do to reduce their chances of catching an unwanted bug in their coat or stomach? We spoke to RSPCA NSW veterinary nurse Alana Dent who answered our questions and more. What are fleas and worms? Fleas and worms are little parasites that feed off your pet. They can cause serious illness if your pet is not protected. Your pet can pick up these parasites easily on their daily walks, visits to the garden and from other animals, so prevention is key. What happens if your dog or cat becomes infected with fleas and worms? Initially, the fleas will cause small irritations from biting your pet which can lead to severe itchiness, secondary skin infections and even anaemia! Worms can upset your pet’s digestion and lead to vomiting, weight loss and loss of a normal body condition in serious cases. Why is it important to protect our dog and cat from fleas and worms? Prevention is the key to maintaining good health inside and out. What can start out as just a few fleas can soon turn in to a full infestation, and breaking that cycle can be extremely hard and frustrating. Only five per cent of the flea problem is visible on your pet, 95 per cent of the flea problem is in the environment! Flea eggs can lay dormant for up to six months, meaning breaking the cycle can be a long and arduous task. Knowing if your pet has an intestinal worm problem can be difficult without regular visits to the veterinarian for their faeces to be tested. It’s often only noticed when clinical signs of illness occur or when you notice worms in your pet’s faeces. Noticing worms in their faeces is a strong indicator you already have a worm burden occurring and clearing this up requires ongoing medication. Some of the intestinal worms that your pet can carry can also be transmitted to people and can cause serious illnesses in children. Prevention is a must if they will be in any area children may visit. What is the standard treatment process? There is no ‘one size fits all’ preventative treatment that can be used, which means we can tailor preventative medicine to suit your lifestyle. There are oral or topical products on the market that need to be administered monthly and every three months. This is great news for those picky animals who eat around medications, as we can apply the medicine they need to the skin. And for those greedy little puppies, we can hide the tablets in food and treats for easy administration. The most important thing is ensuring you stay on top of the medication so you don’t get a flea or worm problem. Your veterinary team can help with your schedule by sending reminders! It’s also important to discuss what products your veterinary team can recommend to you, as some are not cat friendly or are weight specific. Plus, we always have personal experiences to share! Visit our online store here.