Great Britain. A nation of animal lovers. Is it any wonder that more than 50% of all British families have a pet? The British are renowned for our love of cats, dogs, budgerigars, fish, rabbits, guinea pigs, and whole array of other animals from the bizarre to the ordinary.
The most common pets that people keep are cats and dogs, and these domesticated animals become loved and essential parts of the family. We bathe them, feed them, take them walks, take them to the vets when they are unwell, and spend a fortune doing it.
When it comes to pet care the most common complaints for cats and dogs are fleas, ticks and worms.
Fleas and ticks are possibly the easiest problems to treat as long you take preventative measures to avoid infestation. There are many treatments on the market which can help to reduce the number of fleas in your home and on your pet, which are easy to administer and quite harmless to your pet.
'Spot-On' Treatments for Cats and Dogs
This is the most common way of treating your pet for fleas and ticks. This method of treating is done by clearing the hair on the nape of the neck with your fingers and squirting the liquid directly on to the skin of you pet. Not the most pleasant experience for your pet, but definitely the easiest and most effective. Make sure the treatment is administered where the animal cannot lick the solution off.
The active ingredient of most Spot-On treatments is Fipronil.
Fipronil can be found in products like Frontline, Ectoline and Bob Martin Flea Clear, and comes in individually packaged pipettes which can be easily opened and squirted on to your pets’ skin. The active ingredients usually keep working for around 5 weeks. This is because the Fipronil in the Spot-On treatments get into the sebaceous glands of the skin and spread across the animal’s body. Once the fleas and ticks get contaminated with the Fipronil they become confused, dazed and eventually die. A Flea infestation can be eradicated in 24 hours and a Tick infestation takes 48 hours to clear.
When it comes to worms the treatment options are extensive. Again spot on treatments are available, but you can also use tablets, and granules. It is advisable that you find a treatment that you can administer safely and what you and your pets find most comfortable, for example some cats will swallow a tablet when it is in their food where as others need to be force fed it.
No one treatment treats all species of worms but it is important to keep your pets, in the main, well treated against the most common worms. The most common worms for domesticate animals that go outside are Roundworms and Tapeworms, and these are the worms that most over the counter treatments eradicate and protect against.
Common treatments usually contain ingredients such as: Praziquante, pyrantel embonate, nitroscanate and fenbendazole. Other ingredients may be available and different forms will have different strengths depending on the size of your pet.
Don't forget that as well as ridding your pets of parasites, just like humans, animals need a healthy diet and exercise to keep fit. Take your dogs for regular walks and play with them to get them moving and limbering up their joints. Play with your cats, get them low on the ground and hunting and attacking their toys, if they are indoor cats try to do this regularly to make sure they get enough exercise.
Diet is essential for a healthy animal, try to stick to the recommended allowance on the packaging of the food. Remember, cats may not eat as regularly as you’d like and may not eat the recommended amounts, dogs on the other hand can be compulsive eaters and will eat until they’re sick. Try to keep an eye on this, and keep the feeding regular. Also try not to forget your pets’ teeth and try to incorporate treats and dry food which will help keep your animal’s oral hygiene up to scratch.
Also try to make regular/annual visits to your vet for a check up and all the necessary jabs and medicines they may need. If you are worried about your pets health get in touch with you vet and make an appointment.