Pest Prevention for Dogs and Cats

 

Show your furry friends some love

Love is in the air during February. And while your significant other may prefer roses or a nice date out for Valentine’s Day, your pets have a special day of their own this month: Feb. 20, National Love Your Pet Day. Make sure to circle this date on Fido’s calendar, and celebrate big by making sure that your pets are protected against mosquitoes, fleas, and ticks.

Prevention is key

The best way to ward off pest-related health issues for your cat or dog is to make sure that they areFlea prevention, dog bath protected. According to PestWorld.org, an adult flea can lay 20 eggs in one day. This rapid reproduction cycle can turn into an infestation quickly. Here are a few tips for pest prevention.

  • After walks or playtime outside, inspect your pet thoroughly. Brush their coat to remove any debris or insects. Be especially vigilant if your pet has been in wooded areas or high grasses, where pests thrive.
  • Bathe dogs regularly, using a shampoo for pest or flea removal.
  • Be on the lookout for skin irritations on your pet, such as bite marks or red, itchy skin. Excessive scratching is a good indicator that they have skin irritations.
  • Consider grooming and trimming pets with long hair during the spring and summer, when ticks and fleas are most prevalent. Not only will this help to prevent insects from latching onto their long hair (and help you spot any that do); it will also help keep your pet cool during the warmest time of the year.
  • Consult with a veterinarian to determine whether they recommend a preventive medicine for your pet.
  • Wash your pet’s bedding, crate, toys, food bowls, and sleeping areas regularly.
  • Keep your home clean and clutter-free to deter pest infestations and make it easy to spot any pests that do find their way indoors. Vacuum frequently and wash linens regularly.
  • Keep your lawn cut short and your gardens well-maintained to prevent breeding grounds for pests. Eliminate any sources of standing water in your yard to prevent mosquito breeding.
  • If you do find a tick on your pet, remove it immediately, being careful to extract the head and mouth parts completely. If fleas are present, bathe them and consult a veterinarian.

If you notice a change in your pet’s behavior, such as lack of appetite or decrease in energy, take them to your veterinarian ASAP. This could be a sign of Lyme disease or other health issues caused by pests.

What you need to know about pet pests

Mosquito Control, Mosquito treatment

Mosquitoes
While mosquitoes pose a greater threat to human health than any other pest, they can also carry diseases and parasites that harm pets and livestock, such as heartworms in dogs. Mosquito season begins in parts of the United States in early spring and runs through the summer months. HomeTeam can provide a thorough inspection of your home’s perimeter and identify potential breeding areas, treat live infestations, and recommend a mosquito control plan to help keep your yard pest-free.

 

Ticks
Ticks are vicious pests. They are actually arachnids and have eight legs, making them look similar to spiders when they aren’t engorged with blood. Once they latch onto a person or animal and begin to feed, they can grow from one-quarter to one-half of an inch long, making them more noticeable.

The number of tickborne infections in the United States has more than doubled between 2004 and 2016, from 22,500 to 48,600, and the most common of these infections is Lyme disease. The best way to protect yourself is to minimize the risk of being bitten by avoiding tall grass and wooded areas, and wearing closed-toe shoes. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Center for Disease Control recommend wearing insect repellent with DEET, picaridin, or IR3535. After spending time outside, inspect your body, hair, clothing, and pets carefully.

Love your pet

Fleas
Fleas are small, reddish-brown, wingless insects that feed on the blood of humans and animals. Not only are they a source of irritation, but they can carry and spread disease. Controlling fleas is a large annual expense for some pet owners. But even if you have no pets, structures can still become infested. Animals such as bats, rats and raccoons can reside in structures and might be the source of a flea problem.

One of the best ways to control fleas is by thoroughly cleaning. If you suspect you have fleas, treat your pets and clean their areas regularly. Vacuuming can remove flea larvae and eggs from carpets. Be sure to clean under furniture and along walls and discard your vacuum bags.

Treatment

If you suspect an infestation at your home, the best solution is to call a professional pest control company to help you address the issue. Our team is trained to perform pest removal services that keep the well-being of your pets in mind. It’s best to treat your pet for a flea issue the same day that your home is being treated. The following points should help put your mind at ease before the treatment:

  • Inform your pest control technician that you have pets, how many and what kind. Share with the technician where your pets spend most of their time and where they eat.
  • Birds and fish are more sensitive to pest control materials than our furry friends, so technicians will take extra precautions with regards to them.
  • It’s advisable to remove your bird from the home for a few hours if the pest control service includes an interior treatment. Cover fish tanks and turn the pump off until the treatment has dried. The technician will most likely not treat in the nearby vicinity and may even consider using baits or traps instead of a liquid spray.
  • If a pest control service will occur only on the outside your home, be sure to keep pets indoors.
  • Keep all pets away from treated surfaces (inside or out) until the areas have completely dried. Surfaces typically dry within two hours, depending on weather conditions.

Make sure that your pets are feeling the love this month. Call HomeTeam for reliable and effective pest control service.

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