Pet Care

Case Study: Why regular flea treatment is so vital to your pet’s health

By Morgan | February 7, 2020

Often at Vets on Call our vets are asked if flea treatment is really that important. Our answer always remains the same, if your pet ventures outside at all or has contact with any animal that does you need to be giving them a monthly flea treatment. Many pet owners will tell us that they have never seen a flea on their pet let alone a whole bunch of them, but the truth is fleas are very good at remaining hidden.

As pet owners ourselves we know that remembering to flea and worm your pet on a monthly basis can be quite difficult, especially with the busy lives we all lead. We thought it best to demonstrate the importance through a real-life account of one of our home consultations.The following story from one of our home visits to demonstrate the importance of regular flea treatment and the potential cost to your pet and your wallet should you forget.

The following is a true account of one of Vets on Call’s home visits, it details how easy it is to miss a flea infestation and the potential cost to your pet’s health and your wallet of missing their regular treatment.

*The names of all parties and their locations have been changed to protect their identities. All parties consented to us sharing this story.

In early February one of our veterinarian’s Dr William McDonald received a booking through the Vets on Call app. It was for a 10-year-old Tabby, Bruce in one of Melbourne’s south-eastern suburbs. The owner Robert had noticed that Bruce had been constantly, licking, scratching and at times bitting himself for the past couple of weeks. He had ruled out fleas because he was unable to see any when handling Bruce.

When Dr Will arrived to examine Bruce, he noticed Bruce had very inflamed skin around his stomach, groin, armpit and at base of his tail – all major hotspots for fleas hiding out. A thorough examination of Bruce confirmed that not only did he have fleas, he was in fact riddled with them and the scratching, chewing and licking were symptoms of a severe flea infestation.

The inflammation of Bruce’s skin was a symptom of the constant abrasion as Bruce tried to calm the itch but also because Bruce had contracted a secondary skin infection. Bruce in his attempt to ease his itch had broken the skin’s protective barrier which had allowed bacteria to enter the body and he was now fighting a nasty skin infection that was making him very unwell.

Dr Will needed to prescribe a course of antibiotics to address the infection and allow Bruce’s body to fight the bacteria that was making him unwell. The visit ended up costing Bruce far more to treat the infection than the cost of monthly flea and worming treatment. His story just highlights the havoc these tiny creatures can cause your pet’s health if they’re not adequately protected against.

Bruce is now on the mend and signed up to Vets on Call’s Basic Health Plan which delivers him his tailored flea, tick and worming treatment on the same day, every month so Robert never forgets and Bruce is never without protection from those little critters ever again.

We want your pet to be by your side as long as possible which is why we care so much about maintaining a healthy pet, not just treating them when they get sick.You can buy flea and worming treatment for your pet from any good pet retailer, but if you’re like us and have trouble remembering your pet’s monthly treatment talk to one of our vets about having their flea, tick and worming sent to you on a monthly basis.

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