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Fleas and ticks are parasites that can be found in almost every climate and location where dogs live. These pests take up residence on your dog and live by biting the dog and feeding on their blood. In the process, they can cause allergic reactions, infections, and other serious health complications. Vets typically recommend year-round flea and tick prevention for dogs.
If you see symptoms of flea infestation, such as skin lesions, excessive itching, or visible flea droppings (often called “flea dirt”) on your dog’s skin, it may mean your treatment program needs adjusting. Also, if you see a tick on your dog, you should first remove the tick and then clean the area. Monitor for symptoms of tick-borne illness, such as swollen joints, reluctance to move, loss of appetite, or lameness.
Advantage II and Advantage Multi
Advantage II contains the active ingredients imidacloprid and pyriproxyfen. Together, these medications work quickly to control fleas and lice. It kills fleas at multiple life stages, from egg to adult. Advantage II does not control ticks. Advantage Multi contains the active ingredients imidacloprid and moxidectin. It controls adult fleas, as well as hookworms, roundworms, and whipworms. It also treats sarcoptic mange and helps prevent heartworm disease. Advantage Multi does not target ticks.
Advantage Multi Topical Solution
Bravecto contains the active ingredient fluralaner, which controls flea and ticks. It is also available as a topical treatment that is given every 3 months. Bravecto should be used with caution in dogs with a history of seizures or neurologic disorders. Bravecto is available as chews that can be given monthly or every 3 months, available in the following strengths:
Frontline Gold, Frontline Plus and Frontline Shield
Frontline Gold contains the active ingredients fipronil, (s)-methoprene, and pyriproxyfen. It kills multiple life stages of fleas, as well as controlling ticks and lice.
Frontline Plus contains fipronil and (s)-methoprene. It is topical medication that controls fleas, ticks, and lice but is not as fast-acting as the Frontline Gold formulation
Frontline Shield contains the active ingredients fipronil, permethrin, and pyriproxyfen. It kills multiple life stages of fleas, as well as controlling ticks, chewing lice, and stable flies. It also repels mosquitos, stable flies, and ticks. Frontline Shield is highly toxic to cats, so use care or avoid it entirely if you have cats in the household.
K9 Advantix II contains the active ingredients imidacloprid, permethrin, and pyriproxyfen. Together, these medications treat ticks, mosquitos, chewing lice, and multiple life stages of fleas. K9 Advantix II is applied monthly. K9 Advantix II is highly toxic to cats and should be used with caution in households that include cats.
NexGard contains the active ingredient afoxolaner, which is the isoxazoline class of drugs. NexGard treats fleas, Black-legged (deer) ticks, American dog ticks, brown dog ticks, and Lone Star ticks. This product is available as a chew that is given once a month. It should be used with caution in dogs with a history of seizures or neurologic disorders.
Simparica© Trio combines the active ingredients sarolaner (in the isoxazoline class of medications), moxidectin, and pyrantel. Together, these medications target a wide range of parasites, including larval (juvenile) heartworms, roundworms, and hookworms, as well as providing flea and tick control against a variety of tick species.
According to the manufacturer, Simparica© Trio is well-tolerated. In clinical studies, side effects may include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, anorexia, polyuria, hyperactivity, and polydipsia. Complete safety information is available on the product’s safety label. If you suspect your dog is experiencing side effects after taking Simparica©, contact your vet.
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