Fleas are a common pest for dogs and cats. While they can be an annoyance, their bites are painful, leave red bumps on your pet's skin, and sometimes lead to infections. But there is more to know about these pesky parasites than being an itch in your cat or dog's ear! Here are four flea diseases you need to know about:
Murine Typhus is a disease that can be transmitted to humans and pets alike. It's especially dangerous for those with compromised immune systems, so it's important to vaccinate your pet! Murine typhus is caused by bacteria in the fleas on your cat or dog.
These fleas can then transmit the disease as they bite you and feed on you as well as other animals. The symptoms of murine typhus include fever, chills, headache, muscle pain and nausea that last from three days to six weeks."
1. What is Murine Typhus?
Murine typhus is a disease that occurs in areas where there are lots of feral cats and rats. It's caused by rickettsial bacteria (rickettsia) like Typhus, which includes other diseases such as Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Fleas can be vectors for the bacterium, meaning they can transmit it to your pets or to people who interact with them.
2. Who gets Murine Typhus?
Any cat, dog, child or adult that spends time outside and around animals may come into contact with a flea carrying the bacteria that causes murine typhus. Cats don't have to have a fever to cause this type of typhus! As long as they're infected with the flea-transmitted rickettsia bacterium, they can give people or pets plague-like symptoms.
3. What are the Symptoms?
If your pet is infected with murine typhus, you might not see any signs until the bacteria has attacked their organs. This may happen two to four weeks after being bitten by an infected flea. You'll want to watch for flu-like symptoms, including fever, lethargy, loss of appetite, muscle aches and headaches. A few days later, these symptoms could develop into a rash on your pet's face, chest and abdomen.
4. Is Murine Typhus Contagious?
As long as your dog or cat remains flea-infested, they are contagious carriers of the rickettsia bacterium, which means you will want to isolate them until they are no longer carrying it! If your pet is bitten by an infected flea, you may contract murine typhus if the disease-carrying organism gets into your bloodstream.
5. How is Murine Typhus Diagnosed?
Since many of these symptoms can be caused by other common parasites or diseases, proper diagnosis requires a series of tests including a Blood test (to identify antibodies) Clinical evaluation PCR test for rickettsial DNA in blood samples Fluorescent antibody testing of biopsy specimens
6. How is Murine Typhus Treated?
Your veterinarian may prescribe antibiotics like doxycycline or chloramphenicol that are effective in killing rickettsial bacteria.
7. How Can I Prevent Murine Typhus?
A flea and tick prevention product containing adulticide (kills adult fleas and ticks) like Capstar® will kill the pests before they can bite your pet and pass on murine typhus to them! To keep your dog or cat from getting this disease in the first place, be sure you're using a product that contains an adulticide that kills not only adult fleas but all life stages of these parasites including their eggs! Ask your veterinarian for advice on how to best prevent fleas and ticks around your home.
Mycoplasma haemofelis is one of the newest flea-transmitted diseases. It can infect both dogs and cats but also affects humans, too. Mycoplasmosis is caused by parasites called mycoplasmas (similar to bacteria) that can be carried by your pet without them showing any symptoms.
Once in the bloodstream, these parasites multiply rapidly and attach themselves to red blood cells." Mycoplasma haemofelis leaves telltale signs like bleeding into the lungs, skin lesions that appear on the chest or abdomen of your cat or dog, anaemia (low red blood cell count), low platelet number (cells needed for a normal clot) and jaundice (yellowing of the skin).
1. Who gets Mycoplasma haemofelis?
Any dog, cat or human that comes into contact with an infected animal is at risk of contracting mycoplasmosis. This disease can be transmitted by flea bites, but also through direct contact with blood and tissues from an infection source (ex: sex). The parasite thrives in moist environments such as those found in the nose and mouth of cats and dogs as well as their eyes. Your pet's environment is also a carrier since parasites live in soil and grasses where animals like rabbits congregate.
2. How Mycoplasma haemofelis is diagnosed?
Mycoplasma haemofelis is hard to diagnose since it has similar symptoms as other diseases like cancer, leukaemia, Lyme disease, feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), cat scratch fever and haemophilia. The only way to find out for sure if your pet has this blood parasite is by taking a blood sample at your vet's office or animal hospital and having the blood tested in a laboratory for identification of the organism.
3. How is Mycoplasma Haemofelis treated?
Antibiotics like doxycycline are used to treat animals with mycoplasmosis but these drugs must be given long-term (over 2-3 weeks) because they don't kill parasites quickly; instead, they inhibit their growth. Veterinarians have to combine anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce the severity of symptoms in dogs and cats with mycoplasmosis.
4. How Can I Prevent Mycoplasma Haemofelis?
Since this disease is transmitted by parasites, the best way to prevent mycoplasmosis in your pet is to keep them from getting flea infestations in the first place Apply a topical treatment monthly or use an oral product like Capstar® that kills adult fleas One application of Frontline ® Plus controls ticks, too! Ask your veterinarian for advice on how to protect your dog or cat against these parasites!
5. What are the symptoms of Mycoplasma haemofelis?
If you notice any unusual symptoms in your animal - including weight loss, pale gums and lethargy (extreme laziness), bring them to your veterinarian for tests.
Capstar Flea Tablets Treats for Cats and Dogs
If you have a cat or dog, there's no doubt you've had to deal with fleas - the biting insects that can make your pet miserable! Did you know that one flea bite can ruin hours of playtime? Remember, if not treated properly, pets who are constantly itchy from fleas may scratch until their skin becomes infected, which can lead to other health problems. Luckily Capstar Flea Tablets offer fast relief in just 30 minutes! Fast Acting Formula The beauty of Capstar Flea Tablets is that they go to work immediately to kill adult fleas before they start laying eggs. means within 6 hours your home will be free of fleas! Plus, you can use Capstar Flea Tablets preventatively before a flea problem gets out of hand. In fact, these tablets are safe to use every day as part of your pet's normal prevention program against pesky infestations.
“ Tip: if you have a cat or kitten, make sure to buy flea treatments designed for them and safe for kittens! Capstar Flea Treatment is available in six great flavours so your pet will love taking their medicine. See which one works best for your furry friend at PetCareRx today! Treating adult fleas with Capstar has never been easier - just give it 30 minutes and those pests fall off your pet. The active ingredient Nitenpyram starts working within 30 minutes and kills adult fleas, and the medicine continues to work for 24 hours. Also: Capstar Flea Tablets are safe to use every day as part of your pet's normal prevention program against pesky infestations ”
And you can save even more - with six flavours available, your pet will love taking their medicine! Treating adult fleas has never been easier - just give it 30 minutes and those pests fall off your furry friend! The active ingredient Nitenpyram starts working within 30 minutes and kills adult fleas, and the medicine continues to work for 24 hours.
Each tablet lasts a full month Kills 100% of adult fleas within-6 hours Starts killing adult fleas within 30 minutes Safe to use with other preventative medications How should I store Capstar? Your pet should be free of fleas before starting treatment. You can apply Capstar Flea Tablets directly or give your pet their regular monthly dose of heartworm prevention tablet. Some tablets may not look the same as those pictured here, but they will still work in exactly the same way - and they taste the same!
Capastat is a fast-acting oral medication that works to kill adult fleas on dogs and cats within just six hours after ingestion. Adult female parasites laid on an animal's body soon hatch and produce thousands of more eggs which eventually develop into adults themselves and reinforce the infestation. Capstar is meant to be used as a means of quickly warding off adult parasites on your pet for up to 24 hours so that new eggs will not have time to hatch, thus preventing the chance of infestation. It contains Nitenpyram which acts upon nerve synapses of insects, causing their death within 30 minutes after ingestion.
Capstar Side Effects:
Though side effects are rare with this treatment, some animals may display rapid heartbeats due to an increase in blood pressure or experience hyperactivity at the onset of the medication's activity. These symptoms should subside after several hours and regular activities can resume. If these symptoms persist, contact your veterinarian at once! Also, never administer more than one dose of this medicine at a time.
This product is for use in dogs and cats only, so keep it out of reach of other animals. Consult a veterinarian before giving this medication to sick or pregnant animals. Also, never administer more than one dose at a time or give it to your pet without their expressed consent since there have been cases of accidental overdose. Capstar Flea Tablets are meant for short-term infestations and should not be taken as an eternal solution to flea problems - consult your vet about long-term treatment options that may better suit your pet's needs.
1. What are tapeworms and what do they do?
tapeworms are flat, ribbon-like parasites that might be visible on your pet's skin near the rectum or in their faeces. They can grow up to several feet long and attach themselves to your pet's intestines to feed on digested food! The life cycle of tapeworms involves two stages: An adult stage infests an animal's intestines via ingestion. The parasites lay eggs, which are eventually passed onto the ground with your pet's faeces for consumption by other animals - resulting in a new cycle of infestation.
2. How do I know if my dog has tapeworms?
Like most parasites, symptoms include irritability and itching around the anus as well as p (eating items that aren't food and stool with a strong odour. If you see an infestation in your pet's faeces, bring them to the vet ASAP.
3. How do I get rid of tapeworms?
treatment for tapeworms will vary according to the type of worm. Your vet might prescribe medication to kill the adult parasites in your pet's intestine, but if they are not killed, more eggs will grow and infest new hosts! Prevention is key!
4. How do I prevent tapeworms?
preventing infestations is easy - simply give your pet their monthly dose of Capstar Flea Tablets to kill adult parasites before any eggs are laid! Also, keep pets inside and away from places where they may come in contact with other animals who may be carrying larvae (in the dirt, for example). If you suspect an infestation on your pet or in their faeces, make sure to bring them to the vet immediately so that you can treat the problem at its source. Once it has been treated, stick to regular monthly doses of Capstar every 30 days for prevention purposes!
Cat Scratch Disease
1. What is Cat Scratch Disease?
Cat Scratch Disease, also known as Cat Scratch Fever, is an illness resulting from contact with the bacterium Bartonella henselae. Although it does sometimes affect humans, cats are by far the primary carriers of this particular bacteria. Only some cats will develop symptoms while others may carry the bacteria without ever displaying any signs of infection! The disease causes no lasting effects on healthy adults but can be dangerous to children and anybody with a compromised immune system.
2. How do I know if my cat has Cat Scratch Disease?
Cats who are infected by B henselae will display symptoms including lethargy, loss of appetite, fever, swollen lymph nodes, enlarged liver or spleen, pain, red eyes, and anorexia. These symptoms will progress to include vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, conjunctivitis (inflammation of the eye), paralysis of the hind legs, weight loss, neurological disorders such as seizures or tremors, fever-like symptoms but with no sign of infection by other bacteria/viruses/parasites.
3. How do I get rid of Cat Scratch Disease?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for Cat Scratch Disease at this time - the best you can do is to take your cat to a veterinarian to diagnose what exactly they are suffering from! The vet may recommend treatment based on your pet's symptoms and will suggest preventative measures for you to take, such as reducing stress and providing your cat with plenty of toys - this will minimize their desire to scratch at things that might bring them into contact with the bacterium!
4. How do I protect my pet from Cat Scratch Disease?
Don't let your feline friends roam outdoors unsupervised, especially if there are many other cats in your area. Keep them inside and consider using gloves when handling stray cats or kittens (especially ones who seem sickly or overly friendly). To keep pets protected on a monthly basis, feed them tablets like Capstar Flea Tablets which kill adult parasites before they lay eggs... it's also important to talk to your veterinarian about any signs of illness so that your kitty can receive the care they need ASAP!
We’ve touched on four of the most common flea diseases that can be found in your pet. If you suspect any symptoms or find anything unusual, don't hesitate to consult a veterinarian as soon as possible! The health and well-being of our pets are very important to us at Pet Vet Care Clinic where we offer affordable care for all breeds of dogs, cats, birds and reptiles.
Read more: Fleas on Pets: Q&A