With October being Pet Wellness Month, Mosquito Joe wanted to share some of the biggest pe(s)t peeves that are in your furry friends’ life. Mosquitoes, ticks and fleas are no fun for your furry friends since they can ruin your pet’s outdoor playtime, cause itchy skin and pose serious health threats by transmitting disease. To protect your furry friends from these pesky pests, equip yourself with knowledge of mosquitoes, ticks and fleas and how you can keep your pets protected through the end of the season.
Mosquitoes bugging your pet?
For humans, mosquitoes can result in everything from itchy bites to more serious diseases like malaria or Zika virus. For pets, heartworm disease is the primary concern. The mosquito plays a vital role in the heartworm life cycle, which is why it is so important to keep your pet protected. When a mosquito bites an infected animal, it picks up baby worms, which develop and mature into larvae over a period of 10 to 14 days. Then, when the infected mosquito bites another dog or cat, the larvae are deposited onto the surface of the animal’s skin and enter the new host through the bite of that mosquito. You can learn more about heartworm disease and the symptoms involved here. The likelihood of your pet contracting this disease can be minimized by following the below preventatives:
- Put your dog on a heartworm prevention program. Heartworm disease can be fatal if left untreated.
- Keep your pets inside, especially in the early morning and early evening when mosquitoes are most active.
- Avoid walking your dog in marshy areas where mosquito activity is high.
- Change water bowls frequently – mosquitoes breed and thrive in standing water.
Don’t be ticked off this year.
Pet owners are especially concerned with tick prevention because a tick bite can cause serious implications for pets. Five of the ten diseases ticks transmit to humans can also be transmitted to pets. That is why keeping everyone (furry or not) around your household bite-free is so important. Ticks are the most efficient carriers of disease because they attach firmly when on your pet, feed slowly and may go unnoticed for a considerable amount of time while feeding. Some of the diseases that can be transmitted to pets are Lyme disease, Rocky Mounted spotted fever and Ehrlichiosis. To ensure that your pets are safe from a tick bite and avoid getting any tick-borne illnesses, you can do the following:
- Avoid wooded and tall grassy areas during walks and hikes where tick activity is high
- Create a tick-safe zone to reduce ticks by cutting grass and brush short around your home
- Stay current on your dog’s tick prevention medicine, like collars and sprays
- Thoroughly check your dog for ticks daily
If you do find a tick on your pet, make sure you safely remove the tick from your pet by using fine-tipped tweezers or a specialized tick key. Pull upward with steady, even pressure while ensuring you are not twisting or jerking the tick. After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area with rubbing alcohol.
Give your pets flea-dom.
Fleas are practically invisible to the naked eye, measuring at a length of around 1/10 of an inch, which makes these little guys tricky to keep under control. They mostly feed on pets like cats and dogs but will occasionally feed on humans, as well. While they don’t fly, these impressive jumpers have strong hind legs that allow them to leap over 50 times their body length. Even your furry Golden Retriever can see the effects of fleas. Fleas bites are itchy, their saliva can be an allergen causing rashes and they cause skin problems when your cat or dog scratches incessantly. Not only can they make you or your pet uncomfortable, but they also carry diseases just like mosquitoes and ticks. There are many ways that you can prevent fleas from creating an infestation on your property:
- Keep grass mowed and trees trimmed. This is the opposite of curb appeal for fleas – they have nowhere to hide!
- Don’t leave pet food unattended in your yard that is meant for your pets. This encourages feral pets and wildlife into your yard to investigate and they’ll bring their fleas with them! Opossums, raccoons and stray cats are the worst offenders.
- Make sure you cut back any tree branches or high scrubs that would allow animals to crawl into your attic. You should also seal off any openings to crawl spaces, garages, sheds or under decks, where wild animals could gain entrance to your home, bringing fleas with them.
- If you do have pets, veterinarians recommend a monthly flea and tick preventative given once a month during all seasons.
Say goodbye to those dog-gone mosquitoes, ticks and fleas!
Let Mosquito Joe be your second line of defense against your furry friends pe(s)t peeves by applying a barrier treatment to your property. A trained and certified technician will treat your yard with an effective solution that eliminates mosquitoes, ticks and fleas for 21 days. As an alternative to our longer-lasting synthetic treatment, our all-natural solution repels mosquitoes immediately. This less-adhesive yet effective option requires treatment on a 14-day cycle.
If you’re still not sure if Mosquito Joe is right for you, give your local MoJo a call or request a free quote online. We are dedicated to making outside fun again for you and your four-legged family and our job is not done until you are happy!