Happy Lab.

Flea and tick season may not be your favorite season, but it is important to know when it is and what you need to do to keep your dog flea and tick free.  Flea and tick season is most of the year in warm states but in other states is generally sometime between March – November.  Simply put, flea like hot weather so if your state is generally cooler, there is a lower risk of fleas and ticks.  But in addition to liking heat, fleas and ticks also enjoy humid climates.  PetMD describes where flea and tick concentrations tend to be, “The most common flea species affecting cats and dogs in the U.S. is Ctenocephalidesfelis, or the cat flea. While fleas may be found anywhere in the country, they are found in greater numbers in areas where higher humidity levels and warmer temperatures exist.This is why you will see a major flea problem in Florida even in the winter, while in Chicago they become less active for a few months of the year. In the drier desert regions of the U.S., humidity levels are typically not high enough to support the flea life cycle. Because of this, your pets are at lower risk of developing a flea infestation in those states.  Even if you live in an area of the U.S. that may not be known for having large numbers of fleas and ticks, your pet may still benefit from preventive medications.”

Though high-risk areas need to be particularly vigilant about flea and tick prevention and treatment, even lower-risk areas still have some risk.  Once a few fleas get into your yard or get on your dog, they can quickly infest your home.  Fleas and ticks can lead to a variety of parasitic infections and cause serious health problems. Fortunately, there are certain preventive measures you can take to protect your dog, your home, and yourself from fleas and ticks.  The first and most important thing you can do is speak to your veterinarian to determine if your dog should be on preventive medication.  Another important thing is to frequently do a visual check of your dog to see if you see any fleas or ticks.  If you do, immediately remove them and treat them to ensure it nips it in the bud quickly.  You can also opt for landscaping around your home with plants that are known flea-repellants.  Finally, there are many medications that are specifically designed to prevent both fleas and ticks.  It is important to start early to minimize risk of pests establishing themselves and breeding.  Speak to your veterinarian about what the best flea and tick prevention and treatment medications are for your dog and the unique climate in which you live.