Gray and white catch scratching its ear

Summer comes with so many advantages: swimming, barbecues, outdoor parties, lakeside relaxation, camping, hiking… you name it! But along with the perks, comes the parasites.

That’s right; mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, and other warm body seeking parasites are out in droves. Not only are these pests incredibly annoying, but they are also potentially dangerous in the number of illnesses that they can pass on to their unwitting hosts, including pets and people.

Your team at Old Derby have some tips for keeping the bugs at bay, and suggestions for keeping your pet protected from parasites.

6 Tips to Keep Your Pet Protected from Parasites

Parasites have a way of infiltrating our lives. If you have ever had to deal with a flea infestation, or extract a tick from your pet, you know what we mean.

Parasites can cause numerous zoonotic disease that affect humans and animals, including Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, tularemia, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and even plague!

The key to preventing these diseases is through pet parasite protection. Practice these 6 tips to wellness and parasite-free health for your fur friend:

  1. Keep pets on a parasite preventive. This includes protection from fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. This is a year-round endeavor, because they do not die in the winter, despite the misconception.
  2. Skipping flea and heartworm testing, as well as deworming from common parasitic works like tapeworm and whipworm, can be setting the stage for a host of illnesses. Annual testing is key to maintaining good health for your pet.
  3. Speak to your veterinarian about the right medication for your pet. Depending on where you live and your pet’s lifestyle, some parasites may pose a lower risk, while others will require year round prevention.
  4. Keep your yard and litter box free of feces. Immature stages of many intestinal parasites are shed in feces, which can then be transmitted to other pets that investigate, or eat, the stool.
  5. Fleas,ticks, and mosquitoes prefer shady, humid environments, so keeping your property less hospitable to parasites will help keep them from breeding near your home. Keep grass cut and shrubbery trimmed, and remove any leaf or debris piles. Make sure there is no standing water near your home (mosquitoes will lay eggs in even the small amount of water found in the bottom of a flower pot).
  6. Even if your dog is on a year round flea and tick preventive (which we recommend), it’s important to make sure they stay out of tall grass and wooded areas while on walks or hikes, and that you check them thoroughly for ticks after coming inside.

Don’t hesitate to contact the staff at Old Derby Animal Hospital for more information about keeping your pet protected from parasites.