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Author Topic: Question about Fleas  (Read 1484 times)

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Question about Fleas
« on: September 24, 2014, 07:26:20 AM »
OK - so in all the turmoil of loosing one of our cats, the other one was neglected.

Both pets were completly indoor animals, but somehow did end up with fleas now and again. Most of the time, we would catch them early enough that being sprayed down good with the flea spray and doing the floors with the powder stuff would take care of any issues.

This time because of the other issues, I don't think I sprayed her down soon enough.

Any suggestions on something I can use? The spray I have says do not spray more than once every 2 weeks and she needs something more aggresive than that this time. Also with everyones feelings being raw over the loss of our other pet, I am hoping to find something that will not tramatize the cat further (or us)

She is a longer haired cat. We think she is at least in part a Norwegian Forest Cat. We got her from the pound, but she she has all the characteristics of one, including the thick coat.

Thanks for any help



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Re: Question about Fleas
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2014, 08:32:20 AM »
You should consult your vet for appropriate treatment for your cat.


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Re: Question about Fleas
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2014, 09:07:19 AM »
Diamaceous earth for the carpets/soft furnishings.(get from garden centre, sprinkle on, leave for a few hours, vacuum off)
The best flea remedies are the spot on type from the vet, but in a pinch you can buy some from pet shops or pharmacies.
I hope kitty likes to be groomed, you will need to brush the flea dirt out over a newspaper to judge how bad it is, or to check when it's all over.
Cats with fleas often need de-worming, that's why the vet visit is a good idea.
Good luck!


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Re: Question about Fleas
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2014, 09:30:23 AM »
The problem with fleas is that the larvae can live for absolutely ages. When ours first got them I did the cats with drops on their neck, washed all clothes and sprayed all upholstery and carpets with larvae killer. Everywhere except the spare room. They won't be in there, I thought. Cats don't go in there, we don't go in there, it's just boxes. Of course months later we moved into the spare room as ours was decorated and bam! newly hatched flea, hungry for me. Vets have stronger drops than you can buy elsewhere, or sometimes tablets. I'd start with your vet.


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Re: Question about Fleas
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2014, 10:02:17 AM »
It helps to know how fleas operate. The adult flea lives on the animal, biting and ingesting blood. Fleas don't have super efficient digestive tracts. A lot of the blood is excreted. If you've ever used a flea comb, you've probably combed out a lot of rusty brown flecks. My vet euphemistically calls it "flea dirt." Entomologists call it "frass." It is, quite frankly, flea poop.

The frass falls from the animal. The largest amount might be where it sleeps, but it could be anywhere.

The adult flea lays eggs, which also fall off, conveniently in the same places where the frass is. I say "conveniently," because the flea larvae feed on the frass, as well as other organic stuff that might be there in the cat bed or your carpet or whatever, even cool places outdoors where the animal might sleep.

The larvae eventually pupate (go into a sort of cocoon stage). They can stay in the pupal stage for months, waiting for cues that a host is near--body heat and exhaled CO2 are common cues. They then hop on the host & it starts all over again.

So, an important thing to do is to break the cycle by getting rid of as much frass as possible. That includes vacuum, vacuum, vacuum. Sometimes you have to do it daily. Floors, carpets, upholstery, cracks & crevices--even your mattress if the cat sleeps on the bed. Immediately throw away the bag. Frequently wash bedding or anything else the cat sleeps on, if you can. The vibration from a vacuum may stimulation pupal hatching, so right after vacuuming is a good time to apply a treatment to carpets, if you plan to do that. If you choose to treat carpets or other surfaces, look for something that says it kills both adult & juvenile fleas. Read the label carefully before using.   

Talk to your vet about prescription flea meds, They can be oral or rubbed into the cat's skin and are usually more effective than over the counter stuff. Less traumatic than being sprayed, as well.

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Re: Question about Fleas
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2014, 12:38:11 PM »
I just went through this last year with 3 cats included a long haired one that was absolutely infested. 

1. Pet stores sell a medicine called Capstar.  This works within 6 hours and forces most live fleas off of the pet.  I gave this to the cats for a full week.  This is the same medicine that the vets will give you
2. Pay for a flea dip.  I found a mobile grooming service that charged $30 a cat.  After her dip, my long haired cat stayed in her bed for a full week
3. Vacuum like crazy
4. Diatomaceous earth.  I found this at my local nursery, none of the local home improvement stores carried it or knew what I was talking about.  The nursery did and had a ton in stock.  It was $12 for a large bag. The way I used it was to sprinkle all over my carpet and used a stiff broom to work it down into the fibers.  after 24 hours I vacuumed and did it again.  A little bit goes a long way.  I still have 1/3 of a bag left
« Last Edit: September 24, 2014, 12:40:27 PM by PastryGoddess »


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Re: Question about Fleas
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2014, 01:03:24 PM »
This is a medical issue.  Please consult a veterinarian.
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