Get Rid of Fleas on Dogs in 6 Easy Steps
Getting rid of fleas on your dog isn’t complicated at all, but it will take a little bit of your time. If you see even just 1 flea on your dog, you don’t want to ignore the problem. Fleas can multiply very quickly and they could become a health threat to your dog if left untreated.
Not only can the fleas irritate your dogs skin but they carry health risks as well. Fleas are carriers of tapeworm, the tapeworm can be passed from the flea to your dog with just one bite!
When your dog chews their skin, they may ingest the flea. If the flea is a carrier of the tapeworm, it can be passed to your dog. If the fleas are around your dogs face, they can breath the fleas in, again, they are ingested making it possible for your dog to have tapeworm transferred to them.
Fleas can cause your dog to become anemic. This means that they have a low red blood cell count. When a flea feeds off your dog, they are taking blood from their circulating blood supply, depleting their red blood cell count.
Signs of Anemia in Your Dog Are:
- Loss of appetite
- Low energy, sleeping a lot, loss of interest in playing
- If your dog is severely anemic, he/she may have rapid breathing with shortness of breath
If your dog does become anemic due to the fleas, they would also show signs of being lethargic. The most common symptoms of lethargic behaviour are:
- Loss of appetite
- Not drinking
- Low energy level
Follow the Steps Below to Get Rid of Fleas on Your Dog:
1. Fill a tub or sink with warm water. You need to be able to have your dog immersed in the water as completely as possible. Ideally only having their head out of the water is the best.
You can fill the tub with your dog in it but to kill the most fleas, submerging your dog in the water is best. This causes the fleas to drown.
2. You will need to completely wet your dog, from his/her face all the way to the tail. Take your flea shampoo and starting at the back of the ears squeeze out a thick amount of shampoo in a straight line to the tail.
If your dog has signs of hot spots, you can use an oatmeal based flea shampoo. The oatmeal will help soothe your dog’s skin, while still killing the fleas.
Rub the shampoo into a very thick lather. Be sure to completely cover your dog with the flea shampoo, belly, neck, legs, back and tail. You will need to scrub the shampoo right down to your dogs skin. Massaging the lather into their skin makes the flea killing more effective.
If the water turns red, don’t panic, this is because of the flea “dirt”, or droppings on your dogs skin. When it mixes with water it will turn blood red because it is actually dry blood.
3. Now you need to thoroughly rinse the shampoo off your dog. Be sure that all soap is removed as this could cause the skin to be more irritated if it’s left on.
After your dog is rinsed of the shampoo, you’ll probably see fleas moving around on them.
Now you’ll need to continue rinsing your dog from the face to the tail. If you can get your dog to lay in the water that would be best.
You are drowning the fleas. If you see any fleas by your dog’s nose or eyes, take your wet hand and swipe in right back into the water. Continue wetting your dog for about 10 minutes. When you drain the water from the tub, you’ll be shocked at the amount of dead fleas in the bottom.
4. Next take your dog out of the water and wrap them in a towel, rubbing them to get as much water as possible off of them. If you still see fleas alive on your dog you can re-wash him/her again doing your best to have them as far submerged in the water as possible to drown the live fleas.
5. The next step will be to use a flea comb, or a fine tooth comb and comb your dogs coat. If your going to blow dry your dog, you can use the flea comb while drying them. Otherwise you can do it while their fur is air drying.
Starting at the back of your dogs ears, comb in a full motion from neck to tail. After every comb through you’ll need to rinse the comb in water. You’re getting any left over flea dirt, eggs and larvae off your dog along with any live fleas left behind.
Continue doing this until you have combed your dog’s entire body, back, belly, neck, legs & tail or until you don’t see anymore signs of the fleas on them.
6. Now that your dog is flea free lets keep them that way. You can use a topical monthly flea treatment on your dog. This will kill any fleas that try and get on him/her. I would recommend using this consistently every month as a preventative measure for flea control.
To eliminate fleas completely, you’ll need to follow the steps to get rid of fleas in your house. This will walk you through cleaning your dog’s things, including their bedding and killing the fleas in all of its life stages from your home.
If you have any questions or comments you’d like to share, please leave it below. I’d love to hear how your experience was with your dog during this process! 🙂