To get rid of fleas on puppies 12 weeks old or younger, you’ll need to treat them a bit different than you would a dog, or puppy over 12 weeks of age. A puppy 12 weeks old or younger will still need to be treated for fleas if they have them, you’ll just need to take a little bit more time.
When you find fleas on your puppy, there is cause to worry! When a puppy has fleas, they can become anemic and lethargic. This means that your puppy will lose interest in eating and drinking. They won’t be as playful and active as a puppy usually is. The anemia is caused because the fleas that are on your puppy, eat 15x’s their body weight. They bite and eat the blood from your puppies circulating blood flow causing the puppy to become anemic.
Signs That Your Puppy is Becoming Anemic or Lethargic
- Loss of Appetite Including Not Drinking
- Excessive sleeping
- No Desire to Play
- Rapid Heartbeat
- Shortness of Breath
There is a safe way to get rid of the fleas on your puppy, that doesn’t involve the harsher chemicals that an adult dog can use.
Follow the steps below to safely get rid of fleas on your puppy:
1. Fill a bathtub or sink, depending on the size of your puppy, with warm water. Be careful that the water isn’t to hot, or cold, your puppy will be in the water for at least 15 minutes.
You want to make sure that your puppies entire body can be under the water and only his head will be sticking out.
Don’t panic if your puppies fur has a very red tint when you add the water. When the flea eats, it’s eating the blood from your pet. The fleas excretion is black in color but it’s blood. When you add water to your puppies coat, the black droppings turn red because they are actually blood.
2. Use a flea shampoo with oatmeal, that is safe for puppies. The oatmeal will help soothe the puppies skin, especially if he/she has any irritated areas from the fleas.
Squeeze a good amount of the shampoo, starting from the back of your puppies ears, going all the way down the spine and coating the tail.
Next you need to rub the shampoo into your puppies skin, making a very good lather. Be sure to get every part of your puppies body, the belly, legs and under the neck. Using your fingers massage the shampoo into the skin very well. Remember that this is literally smothering the fleas to death because they can’t get out of the shampoos lather.
You may see fleas up around your puppies face. Use your hand and gently rub your puppies face from the the tip of the nose back, pushing the fleas back toward the water. They will drown.
Now you can rinse the shampoo from your puppy, being sure to push any fleas trying to get away back into the water! Continue pouring water over your puppy, even over his/her face.
Keep rinsing with the water, even after the shampoo is gone, for about 10 minutes. You are drowning the fleas as you do this, when you drain the water you will see all the dead fleas in the bottom.
3. Now you can take your puppy out of the water. Use a towel and dry him/her very well with the towel. You don’t want your puppy getting a chill! You could blow dry him/her as well, if they’ll let you.
After drying with the towel, you’ll want a flea comb to get the rest of the fleas and flea droppings off your puppy. If using a blow dryer, comb through while drying your puppy.
Be sure to rinse the comb after each comb, just like you would do for lice. You don’t want to keep combing the flea and flea debris back into your pups coat.
4. Now that your puppy is all clean and feeling much better, you will need to apply a flea powder, that’s safe for puppies under 12 weeks of age. Follow the directions on the package.
5. You can use a flea collar on a puppy. This is actually a good idea, as you saw while bathing your puppy, the fleas go toward the head of their host, your puppy. Again make sure the collar is safe for a puppy 12 weeks or younger.
Your Puppy is Definitely Feeling Much Better!
You have done a great job. You should treat your home inside and your home outside, if you are experiencing the fleas during warm weather. The fleas came from somewhere and you need to make sure that the fleas stay away. I have step by step easy to follow instructions to help you do it!
When your puppy is over 12 weeks of age, you may want to consider a topical monthly flea treatment, that will help them stay flea free and healthy.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave a message below. We’d love to hear from you 🙂