It’s about that time of year again, where the weather is getting warmer and the fleas are making their unwanted appearance into nature (perhaps your backyard!). How do you know if your dog has fleas? If you notice that your dog is shaking their head, biting themselves, and then scratching more and more, you may be on to something. All is takes is a closer inspection of your dog’s skin to determine if they have fleas. We are here to help!
The signs of flea infestation are not hard to spot at all. Your dog may be itching a lot more than usual and/or their skin may be red, irritated, or even have scabs. Another symptom of flea infestation is constant biting. Your dog may be biting their skin so much that it can even result in hair loss. These symptoms should prompt you to inspect your dog’s skin. You will need to look for tiny, dark insects that are smaller than ants. Weird tip: Your dog’s armpit and groin areas are favorite places for fleas to hang out because they tend to be warm and protected.
Part your dog’s fur with your fingers or a flea comb to expose the skin. If please are present, you may notice the following signs:
- You may see tiny adult fleas that jump.
- You may see larvae that have hatched and are developing into adults.
- The skin may look red and bumpy, especially if your dog has been scratching.
The fine teeth of the flea comb will capture some of the fleas. Be sure to dispose of them in a nearby bowl of soapy water to ensure they don’t survive.
If you find fleas on your dog, you will want to rid them as soon as possible. Try a recommended flea shampoo for quick relief. The fleas will eventually fall off your dog and prevent eggs from hatching for at least 30 days. You can also try a flea and tick collar or flea treatment for the fur of your dog. This will also serve as prevention for 30 days. Keep in mind that you will also need to treat your home and yard. Otherwise, your dog can pick up fleas all over again. There are many types of sprays, indoor foggers, and carper powders which can be used to eliminate fleas in and out of the house. Just be sure that you are following instructions to ensure the health and safety of you and your four-legged friend. Fleas can also pose huge health concerns if they are not treated quickly. Do not hesitate to resolve quickly!