If your cat is scratching her skin continuously and feels irritated then it may be possible that she has fleas. Different kinds of fleas can attack your cat like rabbit fleas but the most common flea attacking the cats and dogs species is the cat flea known as Ctenocephalides felis.
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Make Sure Your Cat Has Fleas
You should check your cat if she has fleas or not because getting the treatment done without confirming the presence of fleas will be merely wastage of money and time. To make sure the settling of fleas on your cat, you have to do these two things:
Keeping an eye:
Watch your cat doing everything and figure out whether something is abnormal in her behaviour or not. Keep checking her coat and notice if you find anything moving and bouncing on her coat.
Combing your cat:
Use a metal comb (fine-toothed) to comb your cat from head to tail to find any tiny little creatures tangled in the fur of your cat on settled in her coat. If yes, then you should be alert to find treatment methods for your cat.
Prevent your cat from fleas with an anti-flea examination once a month to make sure your cat is safe from getting attacked by fleas. This anti-flea examination can be done by the Veterinarian. The vet will check some signs and symptoms such as itching, any skin infection etc to check out the presence of fleas.
Treatment For Cat Fleas:
Several methods and remedies can be used to get rid of fleas and some of them are below:
1. Spot-On Treatment:
Spot-on products are the latest method to treat cats suffering from attacks of fleas. These products are more effective and safe than other products used for a similar purpose. Despite all the advantages of spot-on products, you have to check if the list of ingredients of any product must not contain any harmful substances such as ‘Permethrin’ which is medicine or insecticide fatal to cats. You should also consult with your vet before giving any product to your cat especially if she is a kitten or pregnant.
Following are some effective Spot-on products used for removing cat fleas:
Medicines can also be given to the cat in order to get rid of the fleas. Medicines containing Comfortis are helpful in killing immature fleas while those containing Capstar kill adult cat fleas in just 30 minutes. Other medicines can also be used but you should keep in mind that any product that is used for dogs cannot be given to cats because it may contain permethrin and your cat can die of that. Also, any medication or product must not be used by consulting without your Vet or if it not licensed.
According to a survey in United Kingdom 2019, 84% of the cat owners registered their cats in Vet
3. Organic Compounds:
Many organic compounds are also there that can be used to kill the cat fleas having long term results. The good part is you can find these natural products in your kitchen with much ease. Products like Cedar chips can be used for tiring the fleas. Fleas hate cedar and this is a piece of good news for you. Moreover, cedar spray and cedar oil (a non-toxic essential oil) can also be used as an alternative for cedar chips to kill cat fleas.
You can also have citric acid for the purpose. Dip a comb in citric acid and then comb your cat with it or use lemon water instead. Citric acid is the best remedy for removing cat fleas. Apple cider vinegar and spices such as table salt, oregano oil and carvacrol are also used for the same purpose.
Different collars can be found containing flea growth inhibitors such as methoprene and other flea killing substances like organophosphates and pyrethroids. These collars can be helpful regarding killing cat fleas but they can be hurtful to your cats as well causing skin irritation and redness.
Like medicines and other products, sprays are also a good option for removing cat fleas and giving relief to your cat again. There are two types of sprays that can be used for the desired purpose:
i. Pump action spray:
Pump action sprays are the best option because they are noise free and will not make your cat nervous or frightened anyway. You can find suitable pump action spray for your cat from a supermarket or your Vet.
ii. Aerosol spray:
Aerosol sprays are not recommended if your cat gets nervous easily because they have a disturbing noise that will make your cat upset and scared.
6. Flea Growth Regulators:
The positive feature of flea growth regulators is that they can be used in injections as well as given to the cats orally. They are also present in some sprays, powders and spot-on products. They are good for killing mature and adult cat fleas which are hard to kill. The powerful flea growth (insect growth) regulators include pyriproxyfen and methoprene.
Certain water-resistant, on-pet powders can be used for eliminating cat fleas but the worst part of it is that they work temporarily and are effective only until the powder is on the coat of your cat.
Free Your House from Fleas:
After treating your cat and making her free from fleas, it is extremely essential to remove them from your house and every item of it because on average, a female flea lays 50 eggs per day and you would end up having a whole species of them. You can de-flea your home by following ways:
- Vacuuming everyday
- Wash your house and other things such as bedsheets, carpets etc. at least once a week
- Use Foggers and bombs
- Empty the vacuum bag every time after vacuuming
How to Deal with the Stubborn Fleas?
Some cat fleas especially the adult ones are quite stubborn and it is really hard to eradicate them from your home easily. For this purpose, you should take the following methods into account:
- Spray the home thoroughly with flea insecticide but keep in mind that a single application of it may last 6 months in the environment i.e. it is not environment friendly at all.
- Make sure all pets in the house are treated and no one is left behind because if so, fleas will take control over your home again.
- Check the products before use because they may contain toxic substances like permethrin and your cat would probably die of it.
- Generally, it takes 2 weeks to 3 months to completely eradicate the fleas and make your home flea free but if still, it does not work you can consult a fleas expert as well.
It is common and normal for your cat to get fleas but if left untreated it may affect your cat as well as your house. No matter whatever strategy you are using you must consult with your Veterinarian. Make sure you are using the right method for removing cat fleas because it will not only save your time but your money too.