As plants begin to blossom this spring and the temperature warms up, we all look forward to spending more time outdoors. Whether we are taking longer walks through the neighborhood, going for hikes in the woods, or spending extra time lounging or gardening in our yards, the warmer weather and beautiful new blooms entice us out of our winter cocoons and into the fresh air and sunshine. While this is a beautiful time of rebirth and renewal in nature, it is also the most active time for fleas and ticks. Fleas and ticks are not only nuisance insects, they can pose serious health concerns for both people and animals. It is important to protect our animals throughout the year and to be especially vigilant in the warmer months when we are spending more time outside and these insects are most abundant.
Fleas and ticks can attach to your animal and live off his or her blood, causing itching and discomfort. Fleas can also hitch a ride on your animal into your house resulting in an infestation that can be challenging to eliminate. But these insects are more than just an uncomfortable nuisance. They can also cause serious health problems for both people and animals.
Illnesses Caused by Ticks and Fleas
According to the experts at WedMD, ticks can be responsible for a handful of diseases that can sicken your animal, including anaplasmosis, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, hepatozoonosis, Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, cytauxzoonosis, and bartonella (which can also come from fleas). Animals with anaplasmosis will have symptoms similar to Lyme disease, such as fever and lethargy. They will also suffer from lack of appetite and, in some cases, bleeding. Babesiosis causes destruction of your dog’s red blood cells. Symptoms can include fever, weakness, weight loss, pale gums, and yellow/orange eyes. Animals with ehrlichiosis will have vomiting and bleeding. If your animal ingests a tick infected with hepatozoonosis, the disease will transfer to your animal as well, causing severe weakness. Another tick borne illness is Lyme disease, which affects dogs and humans, but not cats. In dogs, the disease typically does not result in serious illness, but may cause symptoms like fever and lethargy that would need veterinary attention. Like Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever also only sickens dogs and humans, though other mammals are carriers. Symptoms of this illness may be mild and include coughing and vomiting. More severe cases will show bleeding and trouble standing. Cytauxzoonosis only affects cats, and it can be deadly. It is a swift moving disease and needs treatment right away. Bartonella affects both dogs and cats and can result in fever and joint pain as well asodd behaviors.
Fleas can also cause disease, including dermatitis, tapeworms, and hair loss. Animals who are allergic to flea saliva will get dermatitis when bitten by a flea. Dermatitis is an allergic skin reaction that cause redness and itching. If your animal ingests a flea with tapeworm, he or she can also get this parasite, which lives in the small intestine. Nutrients that should go to keeping your animal healthy will instead go to the tapeworm until it passes through your animal’s system. While having a tapeworm is not ideal, it doesn’t often stick around long enough to cause serious illness. Fleas can also cause hair loss by damaging the hair shaft and causing an itchy animal to scratch so much he or she develops bald spots (WebMD).
If you notice any of these symptoms in your animal and/or suspect that your animal has been bitten by fleas or ticks, contact your veterinarian.
What You Can Do to Prevent Flea and Tick Problems
Short of never leaving your house, there is not much you can do to prevent your animal companion from being exposed to fleas and ticks. Nature is full of these tiny insects, especially in heavily wooded spots and areas of overgrown grass. But there is plenty that you can do to keep your animal safe from flea and tick bites when they are exposed in order to avoid the resulting illnesses. The most important thing you can do is to treat your animal year round with preventative products. These include shampoos, collars, spot control topicals, sprays, and chews. There are a lot of options when it comes to flea and tick prevention, but many of these medications contain harsh chemicals, including pesticides or insecticides. These chemicals can be just as harmful to your animal as the flea and tick bites, if not more. Of course, Earth Animal has another way in our Nature’s Protection™ line of flea and tick prevention. We harness the power of nature found in medicinal herbs, essential oils, vitamins, and minerals to build your dog or cat’s immunity and gently, but powerfully, repel and protect against fleas and ticks.
Nature’s Protection™ is a two-step protocol to keeping your animal companion safe from flea – and tick – caused illnesses that works to protect your animal from the inside and out.
The first step includes using the powder and drops to provide internal protection by making your animal’s blood distasteful to fleas and ticks so that they are significantly less likely to bite your animal and by enhancing your animal’s immunity and allergy protection in case your animal does happen to get a bite. Nature’s Protection™ Flea and Tick Daily Internal Powder is made from wild crafted herbs to help support a healthy immune system and alter the scent and taste of your animal’s blood so that fleas and ticks won’t be attracted to it. The Daily Herbal Drops also utilize an herbal blend to enhance your animal’s immune system and add an extra layer of protection against allergic reactions and itching just in case they happen to get a bite during middle and peak flea and tick season.
The second step provides external protection with a collar, powder, spray, spot-on, and shampoo that repel fleas and ticks, making it significantly less likely that they will be on your animal in the first place. All of the topical products – Herbal Topical Powder, Herbal Bug Spray, Herbal Shampoo, Flea & Tick Spot On, and Flea & Tick Collar – are made with an aromatic blend of herbs that are naturally repulsive to fleas and ticks but which you and your animal won’t notice, keeping nuisance insects, including mosquitoes, away naturally and safely.
To follow the two-step protocol, add the Daily Internal Powder to your animal’s food according to label instructions daily all year round and include the Daily Herbal Drops through mid – and peak- season. In addition to the powder and drops, choose the Flea & Tick Collar or Flea & Tick Spot On throughout mid- and peak – season. For even more protection, the Herbal Bug Spray can be applied once daily throughout mid- and peak – season and is safe to use on both animals and humans. Bathe your animal with the Herbal Shampoo once every three weeks mid-season and once every two weeks peak-season. Apply the Herbal Topical Powder once a week if you are dealing with an infestation.
This two-step approach is comprehensive and all-natural. Following the Nature’s Protection™ protocol and checking your animal for fleas and ticks after every trip outside and every visit with other animals, you can rest assured that you are doing all you canto keep your animal companion flea – and tick – free and safe from the illnesses and discomfort that can come from these insects.