How to Use Flea and Tick Spot Ons

BY | March 04 | COMMENTS PUBLISHED BY

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Flea and tick season is here, and that means it's time to protect your pets with a spot-on or other medication if you haven't started already. Not sure what to do with the tube of Frontline or Frontline Plus spot-on? Take a look at these videos that break down how to use Frontline Plus for Dogs and Frontline Plus for Cats. Your pets will be protected in no time! 

How to Use Frontline Plus for Dogs


How to Use Frontline Plus for Cats


Some more ideas for applying the spot-on treatments can be found below.

Spot On Tick and Flea Treatment - How to Use Spot On

Spot-on flea treatment applies in seconds and provides month-long, complete protection from blood-hungry parasites. Spot-on treatment is packaged in individual doses of liquid and is applied by pouring the liquid onto the back of your pet, just between the shoulders. Use several spots for a larger animal to avoid irritation. From there, the cat or dog flea medicine is absorbed into your pet's system and goes to work instantly. Just be sure your pet doesn't roll around and rub the flea and tick meds off in the few minutes after application.

Fleas and ticks make pets and their owners crazy. Not only do these elusive parasites threaten the health and well-being of our precious friends, but they also foster a sense of diminished control for responsible pet parents. Instead of enjoying the presence and personality of a pet, one worries, loses sleep, or is also attacked by these tiny biters. Lucky for everybody, spot-on flea and tick treatments offer complete and immediate protection.

It almost sounds unfair, all those doomed fleas and ticks. All those eggs, pupae, and larvae that will never reach adulthood, that never had a chance. But who sits on your lap? Who do you love? Spot-on treatments ensure that you and your pet can enjoy one another's company without restlessness, worry, or the potential for disease.

Spot on Treatment Application

  1. Find a time when your household is traditionally the most peaceful. Avoid wrestling with your pet during this process, so your loved one doesn’t associate the application of this flea and tick medicine with a negative experience.

  2. When your pet is at ease, open the treatment. If you find the right moment to apply treatment, you don’t want to worry about breaking open the container while keeping your pet close by.

  3. Apply treatment directly to your pet’s skin, at the nape of the neck. Bigger animals use a larger dose size, so use several spots along their back to avoid irritation. Be sure to follow the directions provided with the medicine, and consult your veterinarian if you need additional clarity.

  4. Don’t rush. This medicine absorbs into the skin slowly, and experts recommend maximum absorption for maximum effectiveness. Maintain a calm demeanor as pets are sensitive to the anxieties of their owners. In situations like these, an Adaptil spray can help. 

  5. If you have other pets of different sizes or species, it’s recommended to keep treated pets apart for twenty-four hours while the medication absorbs.

  6. Monitor your pet and keep your furry friend from rolling on any valuable household items. Your pet will feel the presence of medicine such as Trifexis and will want to rub it off, so keep an eye out to avoid diminished doses or damage to your property immediately after application.

How Do Spot-on Cat or Dog Flea and Tick Treatments Work?

After application, the flea and tick treatment for dogs and cats is carried out by the circulatory system of your pet. Any parasite that ingests your pet's blood ingests certain death in the form of pesticide that, as long as you follow directions, should not impact your pet's health. Many spot-on treatments (like Frontline Plus and K9 Advantix II) include Insect Growth Regulators, which prevent flea eggs from hatching, and Insect Development Inhibitors, which prevent hatched fleas from further maturation. Parasites are simple creatures: they want to drink blood and reproduce. Spot-on dog or cat flea treatment halts parasitic progress at every stage of life. You've got plenty to worry about, might as well cross parasites off the list.

What if I Have Other Pets?

If your household is home to more than one animal, it's safe to assume that if one pet has fleas, everybody has fleas. Ask your veterinarian which spot-on treatments are ideal for your household. They are designed with the species, size, and weight of your pet in mind. The treatment for dogs is not intended for cats or vice versa. If you've treated Fido, it's recommended that you keep your little buddy away from feline playmates for at least twenty-four hours.

Follow the Directions on the Product Label

Read the product label carefully and follow all directions. If you need assistance, ask your veterinarian or animal health professional.

Do not use a product on your cat if it has been diagnosed with any condition that would prevent its safe use. Do not use a product on your pet if it is allergic to the active ingredient in the medication or other ingredients in that medication.

Do not use products containing permethrin (Fiproguard, Nexgard, or Nexgard chewables) for flea control on dogs less than six months of age and cats less than eight weeks of age unless prescribed by your veterinarian and according to label directions.

Do not treat nursing bitches during lactating without first seeking veterinary advice regarding potential drug transfer into breast milk.

Use Only Once a Month During Tick Season

Spot-on products work by transferring active ingredients through the skin of your dog and into the bloodstream. Your veterinarian will advise you to use a spot-on product only once a month during the tick season. This is because it takes several days for flea eggs to mature into adult fleas, so if they are exposed to an adulticide at this stage in their development, they will die before they have had a chance to lay eggs and start the cycle again.

If you live in an area where ticks are prevalent year-round, it is recommended that you treat your dog with a spot-on every three months, even if there were no ticks present previously. It's also important that dogs don't come into contact with other dogs after treatment, especially around the breeding time when both male and female hormones are elevated. This can make them more susceptible to developing side effects from insecticides such as pyrethrin or permethrin.

Apply Spot-on Products When Your Dog Is Dry and Cool

You should apply the spot-on products when your dog is dry and cool. The best time to apply the product is before your dog gets wet or hot, but it can still be applied after getting wet or hot as long as you are sure that all of the product has dried completely on your pet’s skin.

You should not apply a spot-on product if your pet has been bathed within one hour. If you have an outdoor pet, do not apply these products until after they have been inside for several hours.

Does My Pet Need Spot-on Flea and Tick Treatment?

If, when brushing or petting your pet, you notice tiny clumps of soil-like material, that's flea dirt. Flea dirt was once your pet's blood, but it's the fecal matter now. A female flea can lay five hundred eggs in a lifetime, and once fleas locate a life source, they won't let go so easily. If you notice flea dirt, patches of missing hair, or nibbling at the hide, you likely have fleas, and your pet needs treatment. There are many different spot-on treatments on the market. Find the product right for your household, your pet, and your budget.

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis, or treatment by, your veterinarian with respect to your pet. It has, however, been verified by a licensed veterinarian for accuracy.
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