Flea and Tick Control

posted: by: Mt. Zion Animal Clinic & Boarding - Cindy Kidd DVM Tags: "Clinic Specials" "News" 

Flea Life Cycle


The most common problem with fleas is the flea bite allergy.  Approximately 15% of the dog and cat population are sensitive to the saliva in the flea bite.  It takes only one or two flea bites to start the dog or cat itching and chewing for days.  The itching and chewing is an allergic reaction and the dog or cat will be allergic to fleas for its entire life.  Many times the owner will not see fleas on the animal because most allergic reactions occur 3-7 days after the bite.


The most effective way to control fleas is to control the hatch in the premises.  Most adult fleas stay on the pet, feed on the blood and lay approximately 50 eggs daily.  The eggs fall off the pet and develop through a larvae and pupae stage.  The highest concentration of larvae and pupae occur where the pet spends most of its time.  Maximum control of flea infestation requires 1.) treatment of the pet with an insecticide and an insect growth regulator to control the egg hatch 2.) treatment of the premises with an insecticide and a growth regulator and 3.) continuous use of an insect growth regulator on both the pet and the premises.  Chlorpyrifos or permethrins are the best insecticides on the market to kill adult fleas.  Siphotrol is the best insect growth regulator (IGR) because it is sunlight stable and lasts for up to six months.


Apply the premise spray with insecticide and insect growth regulator.

Siphotrol Plus contains both an adult insecticide (permethrin) and an insect growth regulator (pryiproxyfen).  The container will spray 2,000 square feet.
  1. Vacuum floor, chair cushions and under furniture two times before spraying insecticide, then dispose of the vacuum bag.  Vacuuming with a beater bar type vacuum is best.
  2. Cover aquariums and fish bowls.  Remove birds and other pets.
  3. Spray rugs, carpets, pet beds, under beds, cushions, couches and furniture.
  4. Invert can and spray at a rate of 100 square feet per 10 seconds (10 feet by 10 feet room - spray for 10 seconds).
  5. Stay out of the house until spray dries (approximately one to two hours). Ventilate after one hour to control the odor.
  6. Read the label on all products used.
  7. Repeat spraying every 180 days until fleas are under control then spray monthly.
Remove animals.  Spray yard with Siphotrol Outdoor Fogger.  Concentrate on the areas where the pet spends most of its time, especially dark, moist areas.  Fleas will not live in hot direct sunlight.  Keep animals out until completely dry - usually about two hours on a hot day.  Repeat application every two weeks until you stop seeing fleas.  Then repeat on a monthly basis to control the fleas as long as the outdoor temperature is above 50 degrees.


Request at least a 60 day guarantee.  Make sure both an adulticide and insect growth regulator are used in your home and on the yard.  Discuss a maintenance treatment program with an exterminator.

Treat all pets in the household, including dogs and cats which spend time in the house and outside.  We recommend monthly applications of Frontline Plus flea and tick control for dogs.  Newer on the market is a month-long chewable tablet, Comfortis.  Comfortis starts killing fleas in 30 minutes and there is no need to isolate the pet.   Revolution is a product we recommend for cats that protects against fleas, flea eggs, heatworm disease, treatment and control of hookworms, roundworms and ear mites.