Flea Day!

7 Mar

A few months ago I noticed a moving black spec on young 14 lb Franklin.  He’s our hair dog vs. the fur dogs so his belly is pretty pink… easy to see said moving black spec.

Frankie J

Yup, it was a flea.  Because he sleeps with us and we have 3 dogs and 2 cats we immediately moved into Mission Eradicate Fleas.  It’s a close cousin to Mission Impossible as anyone who’s ever had a flea issue knows!
We had stopped putting anything on them because it was WINTER and everyone knows fleas die in winter.  The cats had been scratching at scabs on their necks but we just thought they were battle scars.

Catnip induced slapping

The cats like to get high on catnip then bitch slap each other into submission.  We were deluding ourselves as a quick search on the internet revealed.
Elizabeth went in search of the remaining flea preventative in the house for both cats and dogs.  I ran out to the store for flea shampoo, flea powder for the rugs and flea collars for the inside of the vacuum cleaner.  A frenzy of activity followed.
A few hours later after all bed linens were washed in hot water and flea shampoo, new bed linens on the bed, vacuuming done and dogs and cats shampooed (believe me easier said than done) and Advantix applied we collapsed in exhaustion.  We swore it would never happen again.  A flea day was dedicated for each month and marked on every calendar in the house! (see above)
I promptly went to the Petmeds website and ordered enough Advantix (a topical medicine) for all 5 critters for 6 months.  So one evening a month a very choreographed dance ensues.  We now have it down to a science.  I capture and hold–Elizabeth applies.  It’s important that the fur is moved away as the liquid must be applied directly to the skin.
All the doors in the house must be closed to avoid any escape into hiding.  The dogs are put out back… panic mode spreads quickly.  Maeve, the most evasive is the first.

Maeve

Nisha requires little effort to lure in close as she’s a treat and affection hound.  The only problem with the cats is holding them still long enough.

Nisha

The dogs are let in and Zelda is next as she is very suspicious.  We have to chase her all over the downstairs if she suspects a thing.

Zelda, in spite of this face is a wary sort.

Tanner is fairly easy.  Although with his thick fur I have to hold his hind end upright as the medicine will drip if he sits.  And of course he wants to sit!

Tanner sitting

Frankie however is allowed a 12 hour reprieve.  His is applied the next morning and he wears one of his shirts or a large scarf is carefully folded and tied around his neck.  This allows the medicine to be absorbed before bedtime.  We don’t care if he sleeps with us… it’s the Advantix we mind.

Frankie all suited up.

Advantix works very well but is kind of toxic–good for flea killing–not so good for the rest of us.  So Flea day is also designated as “No Intra or Inter-species Fraternization Day”.  This is more difficult than it sounds.
Both cats like rubbing up on the 2 big dogs.  Maeve will snuggle with Tanner who likes to nibble and lick her ears and neck.  Zelda and Frankie like to wrestle with each other as well as the cats.  Plus they all like physical attention from both of us.  Some Flea days Elizabeth and I are run ragged trying to break up all the fraternization that goes on!
For anyone who might be afraid to enter our home for fear of fleas… not to worry.  The months of hassle with flea prevention has proven to be successful.  The fleas are no more.  And believe me, we check everyone often!
Oh no, I just thought of something… Does anyone know if chickens get fleas??
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One Response to “Flea Day!”

  1. Elizabeth March 8, 2012 at 7:23 am #

    Maybe we should call it Anti-Flea Day. But Flea Day has a good ring to it. 🙂

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