100 lb. Club - OT -- Need Dog Advice!

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10-29-2009, 12:09 PM
Okay, I know this is totally off-topic and random, but I really need some advice and I know several of you chicks on here have dogs!

My dogs have fleas! I'm really not feeling like a lecture from the vet right now (I just know I'm going to get one, so I don't want to go there...) but I was wondering what the best approach is. We're getting the house sprayed on Saturday and I was planning on buying Frontline. Should I give them the medicine before or after the house is sprayed? Should I give them a flea bath too? Is it necessary to wash all the bed sheets and blankets if we're spraying the house (our little dog sleeps on our beds sometimes, the big dog always curls up in blankets)? Should I get some other meds other than Frontline?

Sorry if this is inappropriate to post here, I just really needed some help! Thanks in advance!

10-29-2009, 12:46 PM
Frontline would be the best approach and I would do it before your house gets sprayed because it kills the fleas whole life cycle and also repels them. I would also recommend get some worming tablets as fleas can pass on intestinal worms.

winning the war
10-29-2009, 01:09 PM
I would definitely wash sheets, blankets, and pillows as well. Fleas are a pain in the butt! Good luck!


10-29-2009, 02:02 PM
Personally I would talk to your vet before you do anything to be sure you treat effectively, and safely. Your vet ought to be willing to give you advice at no charge.

10-29-2009, 02:12 PM
If your vet would give you a lecture, he's a lousy vet (no pun intended), find a new one.

When I was living with my parents, we had a flea infestation. The two cats were indoor only cats, and the dog only went outside in our fenced-in yard to go potty. We asked our vet what we could have done to prevent the flea infestation, and he said "probably nothing."

There's nothing wrong with not giving flea medications unless you have to. Flea collars (our vet said) are ineffective (most only keep the fleas off the head) and and other medications do have potential side effects. So you have nothing to get a lecture over.

Some of the house sprays can be toxic to pets - so you really should call the vet to determine when it will be safe for the pets to return (you may have to kennel them or board them with a friend for a few days).

10-29-2009, 02:13 PM
I agree with DCHound I would talk to your vet but Frontline and intestinal worming are perfectly safe for your dogs, they should be done routinely anyway.

10-29-2009, 02:28 PM
My sister had a problem with fleas, her cats got them somehow even though they're indoor kitties :( You seriously need to wash EVERYTHING. Disinfect EVERYTHING. Buy a mattress liner because they can burrow into your mattress through the sheets and basically live there. I recommend flea baths, the medicine and if you have any more problems then see the vet.

Hope you get things sorted, it can be a pain in the booty :[

10-29-2009, 02:29 PM
Some of the house sprays can be toxic to pets - so you really should call the vet to determine when it will be safe for the pets to return (you may have to kennel them or board them with a friend for a few days).

I definitely agree, whatever animals are in the house should probably be kept with a loved one for at least 24 hours because the fumes can be harmful.

10-29-2009, 02:51 PM
I definitely agree with getting them out of the house during and for a bit after the spraying. I would put the frontline on before the spraying - the sooner you can get relief for the dogs, the better. I don't think a flea bath is needed if you put frontline on them, but if you do both make sure you do the bath first in order to not wash the frontline away. I would wash all the bedding and such - I have added a bit of flea shampoo to the load before and it helped, just a very small amount - about a capful for a large load. Also, since you said one sleeps in the bed you might want to treat the mattress too. I use a spray bottle with a small amount of flea shampoo or dip mixed with water and spray it down - make sure it is dry before you get on it. You can also do that with any other soft items that can't be put in the washer - the sofa, the dining room chair seats if they are cloth. When I had dogs I did this once a month or so in order to prevent the infestation and weekly until they were gone if we did get infested. I lived in Florida, where fleas can get pretty bad. It really helped. We're considering getting a dog now, so I will be back to it. Good luck with it, I hope you get it under control soon.

10-29-2009, 02:53 PM
Oh and I meant to add that I agree that if your vet is that judgmental over something that happens to pet people even when they do all they can to prevent it then you should consider looking for a new vet.

10-29-2009, 03:11 PM
Borax soap (has the mule on the box) works very well in getting rid of fleas naturally in the house esp in carpet. Give your dogs frontline now though (if you plan on bathing them wait until after you bathe them or you'll have to reapply).

I have 3 dogs, 4 cats and pretty much a zoo around here since I rehab native wildlife too & we've only had one infestation that was pretty bad (that's where I learned the borax trick at)

If you are going to fog, remove everything from your counters, edibles and things you may not remember to wipe down like toasters, etc. If you have an aquarium in the room half way drain it and see if you can move it to a friend's house or neighbors. After things have settled wipe down everything/wash and air out the house.

10-29-2009, 07:25 PM
Fleas do suck -- wash and vaccum and wash some more!! Mine were basically in the bedroom -- ugh -- it was horrid. Frontline rocketh!

10-29-2009, 07:36 PM
I am in the same boat right now! Amazingly enough, mine have been on continuous Frontline since spring, and last month is STOPPED working! Not the first time I've dealt with fleas so I know some different options. My cats are getting Revolution, my dog is getting Comfortis or Advantage, but it's very frustrating that the Frontline doesn't work on mine anymore (super fleas I suppose).

The Borax works well, but you do have to be careful not to let your pets breath it in. There are possibilities of lung problems if they breath it in. If you can, remove the pets from the house (or lock in a room, then rotate to treat the whole house). Sprinkle on the carpet, use a stiff broom to work into the carpet, let sit for several hours, then vacuum. Some people also mix with table salt because it helps dehydrate the fleas. This can also be done with food grade diatamatious earth (DONT use the pool variety). Again, there are studies of health concerns also (not that the foggers/chemical treatments don't have their own set of concerns.

Vacuum, vacuum, vacuum...they empty the bag/canister OUTSIDE. The vacuum doesn't kill the fleas, so they will jump back out when you empty the vacuum. Vacuum your furniture, mattress, around the baseboards...if you have hard wood floors, pay special attention to the spaces between boards. Wash all bedding...even if you can't see the fleas on it, they could have eggs (I know...eww, gross!).

If you want to bath your pets, make sure you do before the flea treatment or 24 hours after so you don't wash it off. I would advise treating them 24-28 hours before the house. Most vet flea treatments (Frontline, Advantage, Revolution, etc., with the exception of Capstar) not only kill fleas, but make your pets skin poisonous to the fleas, so if you treat them, then have a day or two before you treat the house, if the fleas jump back on them, they will just die. If you do it the other way around, I don't know if the home treatments continue to work, but if they simply kill the fleas and you haven't treated the pets first, they are going to jump from your pet to the carpet/furniture/etc. and you will be starting back from the beginning.

One thing to consider, you may need to do some follow-up treatment on the house over the course of 2 weeks (possibly just good vacuuming, emptying the bag outside) because the eggs the fleas lay take two weeks to hatch. Many home treatments do not take care of the eggs, they just kill the adult fleas. So making sure you continue the procedure for two weeks ensures you get all the fleas.

I do agree that if you are not comfortable with your vet, I would start looking for a new one. If you are concerned about a flea lecture, I'm having the same problem and mine have seriously been on continuous protection for months, even my two cats that never go outside.

If you decide to do a flea bath, one word of caution. If you do not start high on their neck and put A LOT of soap in a ring around their neck, the fleas are going to race to their head and face. Since you can't get the soap on their face, around their nose and in their ears like you can on the rest of their body, they are going to hide in these places, defeating the purpose of the bath. Really, Frontline or any other flea medication will take care of the fleas better than a flea bath. While I mentioned Frontline no longer is working for me, it doesn't mean it doesn't work at all, fleas can just build up a tolerance for it. I would just keep an eye on them for a week or two to make sure they fleas actually died.

10-29-2009, 11:08 PM
don't forget to wipe off your counters and wash your animal food bowls, because the chemicals they spray can be toxic.

I would change your sheets before sleeping in the bed too, and put out new towels.

10-30-2009, 01:18 AM
Wow everyone! Thanks so much for the great advice! I don't think it's too terribly bad since my Mom vacuums almost religiously anyways, haha. But, it's definitely something I want taken care of for the dog's sake. I feel bad watching them scratch! I'm going to buy the Frontline first thing in the morning and give it to the pups. We're already planning on keeping them out of the house during and for 8-12 hours after they spray. I'm in charge of washing everything tomorrow too. We already use mattress liners so hopefully they're not in there...but I'll use that spray trick, just in case!

Thanks for the help everyone! And I may seriously have to think about switching vets...you're all right...I need to find one I don't want to avoid!

10-30-2009, 02:00 AM
You need to treat your house and your dogs. I know that even petsmart has treatments for flees so I would start at any pet store like that. Also you should really use a preventative if you are in an area that they are likely. I am sorry you have to go through that.

10-30-2009, 09:37 AM
I'm doing the exact same thing today. My dogs have never had fleas, and we got a couch from my MIL a few weeks back that I think had fleas in it. We opted not to fog, and used Adams carpet powder as recommended by the vet. I gave the dogs a flea bath that contained aloe to give them immediate relief, the bath kills eggs, fleas, and ticks. We sprayed the crap out of the couch, but if that doesn't work, I'll set it on fire. :D

KaCee J
10-30-2009, 01:22 PM
I agree with all that has been said, start the frontline asap, give em a flea bath, fume the place, let someone babysit for a day or two while things are airing out and vacuum and wash every thing you possible can...those fleas are little devils! :devil: