Fleas & Ticks

Checking for Fleas on Cats and Dogs

Checking Pet for Fleas

Most dogs and cats will pick up fleas at least once in their lifetime. Even pets that never go outdoors are at risk from fleas that can find their way into your home.

Getting fleas doesn't have to be a big deal for you and your pet, but it is important to catch and stop fleas early, before they multiply inside your home and become an even bigger problem. That's why regularly checking for fleas should be part of your routine pet care.

Always Keep an Eye Out

Adult fleas can sometimes be easy to spot, particularly in short and light-colored fur. They are more difficult to find in dark-haired pets. Also, pets may groom the fleas out before you have a chance to see them, so your pet may have fleas, but you may not always see them.

Try parting the coat near the base of the tail using your hands or a flea comb and look for movement. Most fleas grow to about the size of a pinhead and will move or jump when disturbed.

Signs of Fleas

Even if you don't see any fleas, have a look for dark, pepper-like particles on the surface of your pet's skin and coat. These may be the 'flea dirt,' which are flea droppings.

You can easily confirm this by dabbing some of this material with a wet paper towel or cotton ball. If you see dark reddish brown or orange swirls, this is flea dirt and confirms that your pet has fleas. You need to take action now and contact your veterinarian!