It's fall. We lose the leaves, warm weather and daylight, but we gain fleas! Apparently September can be the worst month for fleas because the weather conditions are just right. I found an interesting article on the subject here: http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art5253.asp.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
I discovered some fleas on Cassius last week which was surprising/shocking given he's never had them before. We'd discontinued using topical parasiticides for at least a year, and were relying on an oral medication (Interceptor) to take over. It did a pretty good job up until this month. Looks like we'll be adding a new med to Cassius's drawer. Our veterinarian prescribed a drug called Comfortis, and says he has great results at home with his pets. It's worth a try. Apparently it kills fleas within 30 minutes, before they can lay eggs. Because I had Frontline at home I used that on Cassius when we first spotted the fleas, but we'll be switching over to Comfortis in 3 weeks.
Cassius's belly button is probably his itchiest spot (pictured 2nd from top). Our vet told me the umbilical fold area (3rd photo) is a hotbed for fleas on male dogs. A flea market, if you will. Poor Cassius is getting tired of me flipping him on his back so I can perform my obsessive hunt for fleas. I'm more than a little unnerved by the thought of mobile parasites living on my little guy. I haven't found any fleas on him since we dosed him with Frontline on Saturday, so they should all be dead. We're just dealing with the aftermath now (bites, skin irritation and hair loss from scratching, etc.).
So the poor guy's scaly skin problem didn't alarm our vet. He said the skin looks fine and it could be a result of the flea infestation. I'm keeping a cone on him to limit the itching and have him on a small dose of prednisone to help alleviate the itching.
We visited the dentist yesterday too, but more on that tomorrow.