My experiences as a dog owner.
Having kept dogs for over 38 years, I have come across many problems. However, it is only recently that I have found ticks and fleas to become a problem.
This may be partially because of England's ever-changing climate. It could also be, though, because, in the last 20 years or so, all of my dogs have been rescued ones. As such, they have often been neglected, as well as maltreated. This has sometimes led to them developing various skin problems and allergies.
The rescue dog that I homed from our local RSPCA, a few years ago, had a flea allergy. The dog had experienced an acute infestation of fleas, prior to being rescued.
This meant that his skin reacted badly to fleas. He was instantly put on anti flea medication, which was a daily tablet. However, as with most drugs this can have side effects.
My two current dogs both were homed from a local charity, but at different times. One was severely mistreated and left in a mangy state for dead. The fleas and ticks could quite literally be seen jumping on his tired little body. They had played havoc with his coat and his skin. He needed all his fur removed and daily baths for many months to set him back on track.
The rescue charity also started him on Frontline and 7 years down the road, we still use this, but on both of our dogs.
Frontline is usually bought from the vet. It is purchased in an outer cardboard sleeve, with either 3 or 6 pipettes inside. These pipettes are shaped wide at on end tapering to very narrow at the other end.
To apply you need to hold a pipette upright, with the narrow part upward and tap it slightly. This enables the liquid inside to run down to the bottom. You then simply snap off the top and apply to your dog. This is usually applied at the back of your dog's neck.
The fur at the back of your dog's neck needs to be slightly parted and then this small amount of liquid is applied.
You must dispose of the containers carefully and keep them out reach of any children and, or, pets. Frontline can be harmful if ingested. It is best to try to avoid contact with the product. However, you must still wash your hands thoroughly after use.
The liquid takes a little time to be absorbed on the dog, so avoid petting and contact for a little while. Once the Frontline is fully absorbed, it does not need reapplying for at least a month. Your vet will advise you of the correct treatment for your dog.
Sometimes the Frontline will only be reapplied once every two months. In winter, I only apply Frontline to my dogs occasionally, although vets usually recommend all year use. As it is a chemical, of sorts, I prefer to limit its use.
The great thing about Frontline is that it really works.
However, if your dog already has an infestation of fleas, you will need to address that issue, with sprays or powders, for your carpets and the like. Once your dog has the Frontline applied, though, you must not use another Anti Flea product on it.
Similarly, you cannot put a flea collar on a dog that has had Frontline applied. All of this is why I feel that, at least the first time you buy Frontline, it is as well to buy from the vets.
Frontline is a little pricey, in that a six month supply will cost you around Â£20, but it is well worth it. Your vet will check your dog's health and suitability for this product making sure that you buy the correct strength. The strengths are based on your dog's weight.
Once the product is properly applied, it will not matter if your dog gets wet or you bathe it. Either will have no effect or diminish the strength of the Frontline.
Overall, this is a great product, as you simply use and can forget about it for a month. The boxes come supplied with little sticker reminders which you can place on your calendar or the box itself, so that you get the date of the next treatment right.
Frontline say that:-
"FRONTLINE Spot on kills 98% of fleas within 8 hours and 100% within 24 hours. Any newly arriving fleas from the environment will be killed within 24 hours, before they lay eggs. FRONTLINE Spot on kills more than 90% of ticks within 24-48 hours, minimising the risk of diseases transmitted by ticks"
My advice is please take note of any warnings on the packaging and do not administer if your dog is a very young puppy or ill. It is better to seek appropriate advice first.