How to spot ticks and fleas that drive your pet crazy

The soft, warm fur of dogs and cats is like a 5-star hotel for ticks and fleas. These insects feed on your pets blood and can cause a range of health problems, some of them serious.

August 13, 2020

Ticks and fleas are both parasites that feed on your dog's or cats blood and can cause a lot of discomfort and more serious health problems.

Flea warning signs for dogs include:

  • Dark specks (flea droppings) in their fur
  • White specks (flea eggs) in their fur
  • Excessive licking or scratching
  • Scabs or spots on the skin

Flea warning signs for cats include:

  • Lots of scratching
  • Hair loss
  • Small, dark dots on their belly that move (the fleas)

How to spot ticks

Ticks are much larger than fleas and can usually be seen or felt when you examine your pet. Ticks are found more commonly on dogs and will usually attach near the head, neck, ears or paws. On cats, they're usually found around the ears and eyes.

Ticks can carry diseases that are difficult to treat, so early recognition of tick bites is important. You should always consult a vet if you have any concerns about your pet.

The key to controlling fleas and ticks is prevention.  There is a wide range of options available for flea and tick treatment, and not all of them may be suitable for your pet. Contact your local vet to make sure that you are getting the most suitable prevention treatment for your pet.