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Flea and Tick Awareness Month at Assisi Veterinary Hospital

Malverne, NY (PRWEB) March 16, 2013

Fleas are small, biting, jumping insects that live in the fur of many different animals. Fleas are common and can cause many health problems for pets and their owners. Throughout the month of March, Assisi Veterinary Hospital is helping to educate their patients’ owners on proper treatment and prevention of fleas and ticks.

Fleas and ticks seem similar but are actually very different. Fleas will have fewer hosts, live more than 100 days, and only adults will feed on the host. Ticks however, have many more hosts and can live from a few weeks up to three years. Ticks’ larvae, nymphs and adults all feed on the host. Fleas lay about 20 to 40 eggs for several weeks and the eggs are shed wherever the host roams. When female ticks engorge, they leave the host to lay thousands of eggs at one time, but she then dies.

Flea clinical signs include flea droppings (black specks) in the fur, flea eggs (white specks) in the fur, excessive licking or scratching, and scabs or hot spots on the skin (allergic reaction). Owners can feel ticks on their animals’ skin. Signs of tick-borne diseases include loss of appetite, fever, swollen lymph nodes, joint swelling or pain.

Ticks can be found anywhere, and each year they infect thousands of animals with serious diseases. It is important to get animals screened annually for vector-borne disease. Ticks must be removed as soon as possible when found on an animal, but the process is complicated and requires concentration. There are kits available for removal or a veterinary office can guide pet owners through the process. It is important to protect hands during the process as not to pass infections on to yourself or family.

Cat and dog fleas are the most likely fleas to affect humans, though rats and raccoons nesting in a home can also carry fleas. While their bites can cause severe itching and skin infections, they can also spread diseases such as cat-scratch fever, typhus and plague to people. In rural areas, staying away from animal burrows where fleas breed can prevent bites from fleas on wild animals.

Fleas on cats and dogs can be prevented by the use of topical insecticide drops or shampoos. Flea eggs that haven’t hatched in carpets can be killed with "flea bomb" insecticides, available from veterinary clinics.

Assisi Veterinary Hospital warns against certain “natural remedies” for fleas and ticks as some of them are very dangerous to pets. Please call them for any questions or additional information about pets and infestations, 516-256-0022.

About the company:

Assisi Veterinary Hospital is a full service, state of the art facility offering the very best in high quality care for all of pet's needs. With their fully licensed, caring and compassionate staff, they will care for pets as if they were their own. The Animal Hospital boasts a staff of over 18 fully trained and ready to care for all pets. For more information, please visit their website at

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