All dog owners are familiar with the problems caused by pesky fleas. Fleas are very small wingless insects, brownish red in color, and have sharp mouths by which they obtain blood from their canine hosts. Flea bites usually cause your dog to scratch at affected areas and some dogs are more sensitive than others and can have allergic reactions to flea bites. In general, fleas do not transmit diseases from dogs to humans, but the potential for this exists and they can and do bite humans as well as dogs and cats. Fleas and flea larvae live in warm climates and will live until the ground freezes in cooler climates. They can live on in your home well past this time also.
If you suspect that your dog has fleas, you should take him to your veterinarian. Your veterinary staff member will first use a flea comb on your dog. Flea combs are wide tooth combs and “flea dirt” or dried blood flea excrement is what they are looking for. If this is found, your veterinarian will recommend treatment. Most veterinarians recommend preventive treatment for fleas as it is much easier to prevent them than to treat them.
After taking your pet to the vet, always make sure to give him a nice treat, like greenies, to rid him of his woes!
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