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Protecting pets from fleas, ticks, and heartworm

With the critter season just around the corner, it is natural for pet parents to grow cautious. We do all we can to prevent the infestation of ticks, fleas, heartworm, and other disease-causing parasites. One of the best ways to avoid any of the blood-sucking parasites being home guests is to opt for regular vet appointments. However, there are some natural remedies that can be implemented while waiting for the appointment date to arrive.

Fleas
Fleas cause excessive itching, scratching, and overall annoyance once they latch on to a dog’s fur. If left unresolved, they start laying eggs all around the house, causing a greater nuisance to every resident. Here are certain natural ways to control a flea infestation.

Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar sprays and baths work to repel fleas by balancing the pet’s pH levels. This helps make the environment unsustainable for fleas and healthier for our furry friends.

Essential oils
Essential oils like tea tree, eucalyptus, citronella, rosemary, and peppermint are all capable of repelling fleas. Diluting a few drops of one of these essential oils in water and regularly spraying it onto the pet’s coat is a convenient way of avoiding any flea infestations.

Ticks
Ticks are small parasitic creatures that can find a home in the fur of our pets. Their ability to cause diseases is something that should not be taken lightly.

Topical spray
There are numerous products in the market that help prevent and get rid of the existing ticks on pets. Topical insecticides in the form of creams, ointments, and sprays are easy to use and highly effective. There are a variety of products that the vet can help choose from.

Tick shampoo
Products like tick shampoos and bath gels are designed to eliminate the parasites effectively with minimal or no irritation in the pets. Regular use of these products, especially during the tick season, can come in handy in preventing infestation. Therefore, looking for products that have a long-lasting effect between uses is ideal for achieving the desired results.

Heartworm
Heartworm are parasitic worms that can grow and live in the heart, blood vessels, and lungs of our pets. They can cause severe damage to these organs, leading to heart failure, lung diseases, and even proving fatal.

Give them garlic
As strange as it sounds, adding garlic to your pet’s food helps prevent heartworm and subsequent infections. This natural prevention tip works well against parasitic invasion. However, it is prudent to consult the vet before starting regular garlic intake. They might even be able to help you out with the right amount of garlic that needs to be used.

Use preventive treatments
You can try to avoid heartworm in pets is by using preventive treatments. Albeit obvious, it is also an underused tip. Consulting the vet for appropriate options based on the pet’s age and size is the right way to go about it.

One of the surest ways of ensuring your pets aren’t infected with any diseases caused by fleas, ticks, and heartworm is by taking them for monthly vet visits. Younger pets might need more frequent visits for vaccinations. After that, it is crucial to follow the doctor’s suggestions. Some commonly prescribed treatments for fleas, ticks, and heartworm include Nexgard® and Heartgard®. Heartgard® prevents heartworms and other intestinal worm infections in pets. It can be safely used in dogs aged six weeks and above. Nexgard® is a beef-flavored chewable that comes in handy in the treatments of three types of ticks.