They are unwanted visitors, causing issues your fur babies ranging from discomfort to death…. Parasites are bugs that feed off our pets with the most common being fleas, ticks, intestinal worms, heartworm, mites and lice. Some parasites, such as roundworms and tapeworms, can also be transferred from pets to people so as well as preventative treatment, practicing good hygiene is imperative for both you and your pets’ health.

Fleas

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Flea

While infestations peak in summer and autumn, fleas themselves can persist throughout the year in warm winter houses causing skin irritations for both our pets and us. Unfortunately, the fleas you see on your pet are only about 5% of the whole population in your environment i.e. the other 95% are somewhere in your house and garden!

It can take months to clear a home infestation, so there’s no question that prevention is the best treatment. Depending on your preference, flea prevention can be administered as a topical formula that is applied to the skin, as a collar or an oral formula.

Ticks

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Tick

Ticks are nasty parasites that attach themselves to your pet’s skin causing local skin irritation and, in some cases, paralysis and death. Preventative products and environmental control (like cutting back overgrown garden areas) are essential to keeping our pets safe. Depending on your preference, flea prevention can be administered as a topical formula that is applied to the skin, as a collar, or an oral formula.

Heartworm

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Mosquitoes transmit heartworm

Heartworm is a deadly parasite transmitted by mosquitoes so good heartworm prevention not only includes regular preventative medication, but also mosquito control.

Depending on your preference, heartworm prevention can be administered as a tablet or chewable, topical treatment, or injectable formula.
Heartworm is not found in Tasmania or central desert areas in Australia however is prevalent throughout other geographical locations across the country. Incidence of heartworm has also not been recorded in New Zealand.

Worming

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Worms

Dogs and cats should be wormed on a regular basis from a young age as most infections are acquired from the garden, local park, or other places that dogs and cats visit.

Depending on your preference, worming can be administered in a paste, granule, tablet, or chewable formula and the frequency of administration can vary from 1-3 months.

When choosing the most appropriate preventative plan for your fur baby, considerations your veterinarian or nurse will raise are your pets:

  • Species
  • Age
  • Tolerance to tablets, chewable and topical treatments

As well as considerations around:

  • Other household pets e.g. some products should not be used in the presence of household cats due to potential toxicity issues
  • Specific parasites you should protect against i.e. Is there paralysis ticks in your area? Do you live in a geographical area with incidence of heartworm?

Here at Your PetPA, with our Thriving Pets and Thriving Pets+ wellness plans, we offer Annual Preventatives Package delivery services for flea, tick and heartworm preventative medications – plus reminders to ensure they are not forgotten. Curated to your pets breed and weight and delivered straight to your front door, take the stress out of owning a pet and enjoy peace of mind knowing veterinary care is available for you anywhere you need it!

~ Dr Lachlan Campbell