West Valley Blog

Stop Bugging Out: Eradicate Summertime Fleas with this One Environmental Treatment

By May 30, 2023 No Comments

Let’s run an all-too-common scenario by you: Fido really doesn’t go to parks or have doggy playdates, but he does get run of the backyard and enjoys chasing the squirrels that live in the trees out back.

He is now itching. A lot.

His itching has progressed to a secondary infection.

A vet visit follows. They diagnose fleas, treat for the infection and the itching, and get him started on a good flea preventative.

Don’t get me wrong – I love making dogs more comfortable – and we see this

A LOT in the summer.

But let’s take a step backwards and see how this vet visit could have potentially been avoided completely. Fleas are the primary issue here. An allergy to flea saliva is THE MOST COMMON allergy we see in dogs and cats, and dogs with allergies itch significantly more than “non-allergic” dogs – a single bite can send them itching for 2 weeks. Their skin barriers are not as protective, which makes them more prone to secondary infections. We may not be able to avoid ALL the skin issues….but if we could have avoided the fleas, we may reduce the issues significantly.

So, a good oral or topical flea preventative is essential for these pets. Even if they don’t interact with other dogs or cats, they indirectly interact with the environment wildlife runs through.

Another barrier we can throw up is by treating that environment. Wildlife coming through the yard will carry fleas. Those fleas will jump or fall off the animal and hang out in the bushes or grass waiting for the next animal to come by so they can resume their lifespan. Then our pet brings them indoors, where their eggs fall into our carpet and hatch and start that lifecycle all over again. Let’s pretend that we could throw a magic carpet over our grass and bushes that killed any fleas that landed there – that wouldn’t hurt the grass / bushes or animals that ran through it. That’s the goal, right?

Enter Flea Destroyer. This is our favorite product for environmental treatment. Once a year, you mix the ingredients (we’ll get to that in a minute) with a traditional sprayer attachment device to your garden hose and spray the lawn and under bushes and around trees. For a YEAR…no fleas. Anything flea (or grub!) that lands in the yard dies. But how can you do that and not risk the plants or animals or helpful insects, you ask?

This is the part where the scientist in me geeks out a little. The ingredient is a stabilized population of nematodes (microscopic worms essentially) that specifically prey on fleas and grubs. They don’t care about ladybugs, bees or earthworms. It doesn’t affect roots so your roses won’t be affected – in fact, may be helped if you have a grub problem. If your dog digs a big hole and eats a bunch in the dirt, it won’t affect his system at all and will just be pooped out. It’s the perfect treatment. Actually, all natural. No chemicals. No waiting for it to dry before you let your pets into the yard.

We are still recommending an oral or topical flea preventative for your pet (because many products protect against other things as well – like ticks, which unfortunately Flea Destroyer doesn’t help), but this is a winning strategy!

Call us if you have any questions, but we wish you and your furry family members a fun-filled and no itch summer!