Providing Comprehensive and Compassionate Veterinary Care Since 1988
For Appointment Call: (508) 336-3381

Fleas & The Environment

Treating the Environment for Fleas

 

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Most animal owners are now aware that topical prevention for fleas and ticks is a safe and effective way to keep the flea population under control on our pets. However, in cases of flea infestations, it is imperative that the environment is also treated for fleas in order to get them under control. This is because the fleas we see on the pet account for only about 10% of the fleas in the environment.

There are multiple ways to approach eliminating a flea infestation from your pets and your home. This is meant to be a simple guide on the techniques we recommend.

 

  1. Treating your pet directly: We recommend Vectra 3D® topical flea and tick prevention for dogs and Revolution for cats. The newer flea and tick collars on the market (Scalibor® and Seresto®) also seem to be good options at this time. Do NOT use collars containing Amitraz, permethrin, or organophosphates on cats. The routine administration of topical treatment is every 4 weeks, but in cases of a flea infestation, it is safe to apply it to the animal every 3 weeks. It is ideal to apply the product no sooner than 48 hours after bathing, or to wait 48 hours after applying it before you bathe the pet. This is important to allow the medication to work with the natural oils in the animal’s skin. There are also oral flea and tick prevention for dogs such as Nexgard® and Comfortis®. It is also imperative that EVERY animal in the house be treated, whether they go outside or not. Because of the flea life cycle, you must treat an animal for a minimum of 3 months in a row to eliminate all stages of the fleas. We recommend year-round flea and tick treatment in our area of New England, as it only takes one mild day for fleas and ticks to re-emerge and we are still seeing flea infestations even in the middle of winter.
  2. Vacuum, Vacuum, Vacuum: Fleas lay their eggs on the animal, and then the eggs fall off into the environment where they hatch, turn into larvae, then pupae, then adult fleas. Vacuuming on a regular basis can help eliminate these immature stages before they become adults and jump back on the pets. It is important to vacuum all areas of the house, especially where animals spend time like couches and pet beds. But these eggs and larvae are not limited to carpet and upholstery, they can be in crevices in hard wood floors and linoleum so it is important to vacuum in high traffic areas as well. Discard your vacuum bag or clean out the canister weekly to avoid fleas continuing to develop inside the vacuum bag. Do NOT place mothballs or flea collars in the vacuum, since toxic fume could result.
  3. Utilize flea “bombs”: These can be purchased at most hardware stores such as Lowes or Home Depot. Use a product that contains both an adulticide and an insect growth regulator (IGR), such as Nylar (pyriproxyfen) or methoprene. This can be in the form of carpet powders, foggers, or sprays. Follow label instructions for usage per square foot and removing animals from the home during the treatment. This will also help kill the immature stages of the fleas. However, the eggs are resistant to many of these chemicals, and that is why you will likely need to repeat these treatments 2 to 3 months in a row to completely be rid of the fleas.
  4. Capstar: In addition to topicals and treating the environment for fleas, you can also give your pet Capstar®, which is a safe oral treatment to eliminate any live adult fleas on your pet, providing fast flea relief. It begins to work within 30 minutes and lasts up to 48 hours. This does not have any long-term preventative effect, so is only used in conjunction with other product.
  5. Outdoor Environment: Flea control in the outdoor environment generally involves eliminating the habitat in the yard and kennel areas where fleas are most likely to occur. Fleas tend to like it where it is moist, warm, shady, and where there is organic debris. Rake away any organic debris such as leaves, straw, grass clippings, etc., to disturb flea habitat.
  6. Professional help: If you have tried the above protocols for 2 to 3 months in a row and are still fighting fleas, sometimes calling a professional exterminator company is in your best interest.
  7. Prevention, Prevention, Prevention: The best flea control is always flea prevention. Keeping up with your indoor/outdoor environments and having your pet on a flea preventative will reduce the risk of fleas becoming established and an issue for your pet and its surround environments.
Keep in mind that until all of the fleas in your home have died, you will probably still see some fleas, even on a treated pet, since some immature forms may continue to develop. This is especially true if you had a big flea problem to start with. Persistence is the key here. It is essential to keep following an effective flea control program for a long enough time to get rid of all of the fleas, in all life stages. This may take several weeks to 6 months or more, depending on your particular situation.

Hours and Location

Hours of operation:

M, W, F   – 8:00am to 6:00pm
Tu, Th    – 9:00am to 8:00pm
Saturday – 9:00am to 4:00pm
Sunday   – Closed

We are closed on the 1st Tuesday of each month from 2:00pm to 4:00pm for staff meetings.

We are located at:

288 Fall River Ave
Seekonk, MA 02771

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Products and Offers

Vectra 3D for Flea, Tick, and Mosquito Protection! For a healthy and happy dog, it's not enough to just kill parasites. It's important to repel them as well—so the dangerous vectors never get a chance to bite and transmit diseases.

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Offer: Buy 6 doses, get 3 more mailed to you for free!

Heartgard Plus is the most recommended heartworm disease preventative for dogs, and it helps to control hookworms and roundworms too.

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Offer: Buy 12 doses for a $12 rebate, buy 6 to 12 doses of Heartgard with 6 to 12 doses of Nexgard for a $15 to $50 rebate!

Nexgard is a chewable flea and tick preventative ideal for dogs with sensitive skin or other topical application concerns.

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Offer: Buy 6 to 12 doses of NexGard with 6 to 12 doses of Heartgard for a $15 to $50 rebate!

Seresto Collars for additional flea and tick protection up to 8 months!

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I have been going to Bristol County for almost eleven years. Dr. Ripp and Dr. Richards and the entire team have always been caring, professional, and provide exceptional care to our dogs. I always appreciate the quick return phone calls if I have asked a question and the personal care of speaking to either Dr. Ripp or Dr. Richards when bloodwork comes back (even on a Saturday!). Maddie & Jeter are not afraid of the vet because of the wonderful care and love they receive from everyone here. I wouldn’t take my dogs anyplace else!


I have used this vet as far back as I can remember. The staff is extremely kind. They know their job inside and out! I highly recommend anyone seeking a vet should call and try them out for yourself. GREAT!


Everyone who works at Bristol County is so nice. You can tell they hire people who enjoy and love animals. I always appreciate the care that both my dogs receive from the vets at Bristol County. Dr. Ripp and Dr. Richards and their assistants are wonderful. I always feel they listen to me and provide excellent feedback. Thank you to the entire staff at Bristol County!


Great care for your pets from a caring staff and top notch management! Any issues taken to management are taken seriously and quickly resolved, all in addition to skilled doctors and techs.


Dr. Richards puts my furry friend at ease. She understands Sunshine and works with her temperament instead of resorting to restraining her in a towel. It makes the visit much less stressful for both of us!


One can find only the highest level of care and professionalism at BCVH!


All of the folks at this facility have and continue to provide the best care for our much loved feline family members. I never feel rushed when I bring Katie in for her visit. Treatment plans are explained thoroughly as well as the costs. I ALWAYS feel that WE have made the best choice for our pet.


Always a pleasant experience even when my cat is costing me money. That speaks volumes about the care they provide for our furry little family member.