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I have always had animals and have noticed that in the last 5 or 10 years, the flea problem is getting worse. I never had to treat the animals I had 30 years ago, but in the last few years I have had several outbreaks and they are not funny at all.
Firstly I found that knowing the life cycle of a flea was crucial to understanding how to tackle the issue. So I googled it, as you do and found various helpful websites. What I found out is that there are 4 stages to a fleas life; egg, lava, pupa & adult.
So if your little darling comes in from their walk in with one or two unwelcome little visitors and the flea likes what it is eating ie: your cat or dogs blood, then the adult flea will begin laying eggs. They can lay up to 50 eggs a day! most of which will fall off your animal its normal daily routine and be deposited around your house.
After around 20 days these eggs turn into tiny lava, which always head for warm dark places, and feed from microscopic organic material and flea dirt. After another 20 days these lavae wrap themselves up in a web like material to become pupae, and they can stay in this comatose condition for up to NINE months! They turn into adults in around 5 seconds as soon as they sense a likely food source, by sensing body warmth and carbon dioxide levels. This is the reason a completely empty house can seem to be overrun with fleas. It wasn''t, until somebody entered.
So the trick is, firstly keep your animal protected by a proprietory treatment at all times. This may not be very environmentally acceptable, but you will use way more chemicals getting rid of the blighters than if you never give them house room. If your animal''s blood is not to the flea''s tastes, then it will not stay and therefore hopefully not come home, and it certainly wont start laying eggs if it doesn''t have a food source.
I have used Advantage for cats for the last two and a half years, as a preventative measure, and they have both been been flea free. I have a reminder on my phone for the first of the month, and both cats get treated religiously, summer and winter.
The second trick to keeping your house flea free is thorough hoovering, at least once a week, getting into corners and under rugs. And regular washing of the animals bedding. These two things will eliminate any eggs or lava that may have made it past the door. This is necessary as obviously if a flea jumps onto your animal, it may stay for some time while it decides whether your animal is good to eat or not. During that decision, perhaps a few eggs could be laid.
If you are all now scratching nicely with just the thought of it, I will proceed to describe the product to you.
Advantage is available in two sizes suitable for cats;
Advantage 40 which is marketed for small cats, small dogs or rabbits up to 40 kg and contains just 0.4ml
Adavantage 80 wich is for large cats or rabbits over 40kg and contains 0.8ml
The active ingredient in both of these is Imidacloprid.
The packs are available online for around 9.50 for advantage 40 and 10.50 for advantage 80 and each pack contains 4 small pipettes which each contain treatment that will last 30 days, so all-in-all this will buy you 4 months of treatment which I consider to be fairly good value for money. They also provide small stickers for your calender or diary as a reminder of when you last treated your animal, as well as the obligatory safety information etc.
Advantage also do a range of treatments for various sized dogs dogs over 40kg. I have never bought one of these but they are basically the same products in a larger size.
Treating your animal is, to be honest a fairly tricky business. I always prepare my self first by extracting the pipette I am going to use from the plastic and foil bubble in which it is packaged, unscrewing the top and piercing the top with the upturned lid which is designed for this puropse. The pipette is shaped like a tiny toothpaste tube, so once pierced I have to find somewhere to prop it upright so that the product doesnt spill.
The product should be applied to the back of the neck to ensure that the animal cannot groom it off, but it also has to be applied to skin not fur, which on some animals is hard to find under the thick fur of the neck. The instructions are to part the fur so as to find bare skin, and apply all the contents of the pipette to this area of skin. My cats are quite docile and accept their treatment as a matter of course, but even so, some of the treatment will seep into the surrounding fur, so I try to compensate by massaging around the area to encourage the liquid to soak in.
The clear liquid seems to have a slightly greasy quality and also a strong smell. I find it is visible on the back of my cats'' necks for the next few hours where the fur has become dampened by it, and the fur in this area will feel a bit crispy later when it dries. The strong smell is usually noticeable for the rest of the day. And both of my cats will go to great lengths to try to remove it from themselves, luckily unsuccessfully.
In conclusion, I will contine to use this treatment because it works for me. After having two nightmare summers where fleas came into my house and were very difficult ( and expensive) to eliminate I won''t be taking any more chances. The cost and the unfortunately chemical nature of this product are well worth the peace of mind, and happy animals it provides.
I have a lovely black cocker spaniel called Eddie and like any responsible dog owner I make sure I keep him nice and healthy by giving him regular flea and tick treatments. I also have two children at home so the last thing I need is fleas and actually just the thought of them and writing this review now is making me itch!
Fleas are a pretty miserable little friend for a dog to have too. According to an article I read, " The saliva from a flea can cause more damage and irritation than just an itch. Flea bites not only cause potential skin allergies, but a bite from a flea can bring on infections caused from intestinal parasites." Not nice and not something I want my Eddie to have.
It's amazingly easy to treat your dog and prevent fleas and there are various things you can do to prevent fleas such as bath your dog with a special flea shampoo or give them an oral tablet but I find the easiest and most effective treatment is this topical spot treatment from Advantage.
The treatment comes in a little one dose pack and all you do is break the lid off and then apply the liquid to the back of the neck of your dog. I recommend smoothing their fur apart so you can really target the skin and not just get it on the fur, I know, a bit harder said than done but it is achieveable. I find the best time to do it to Eddie is when he is calm and eating his dinner and I am sitting down with him and can stroke him and prepare him for the treatment. The reason why its applied to the nape of the neck is because this is the hardest place for dogs to reach with their paws and so they are not able to wipe off the treatment or lick it and possibly become unwell.
The little pipette contains just 2.5ml of liquid so its not very much and it dries quite quickly. If your dog does have fleas already these will be killed within one day following this treatment. That's good to know but I use mine as a preventative method and one treatment prevents further flea infestation for four weeks. What I really like about the box of Advantage that I use is that they give you a little sticky memo reminder ticket which allows you to write down when you last gave your dog his/her treatment and reminds you when you need to do it again.
We purchase ours from our vets and buy a box of four for dogs of 10kg to less than 25kg but I think there are probably other ones available. They are also available on internet stores too.
have used advantage on my cat for the last year haven't seen a single flea since. It says on box to use every 3/4weeks i find using it every 3weeks works best.
For those of us who have pets, mention the word fleas and most owners would automatically think of Frontline Drops as a treatment. I know I would have done but maybe its time to vary that thinking a little and include ADVANTAGE drops.
We got our Patterdale Terrier, Jadie, from the RSPCA in August 2004. She was five months old and had been given to the RSPCA by the original breeder. (Apparently, the breeder gave a pup to her grown up daughter and after the Aaaah factor had worn off, the daughter was no longer interested. Sad, but it happens quite a bit.)
We were lucky in the fact that we knew her history as many prospective owners don't. Coming from the RSPCA she had been vaccinated, wormed, micro chipped and had had flea treatment.
As we wanted to keep to a regular routine, we continued with the same food and treatments she had already been receiving so our puppy has been a Frontline girl when it comes to flea treatment. That was until 7 months ago....
My usual flying visit into the vets to pick up a new box was quashed when the vet nurse told me they didn't have any Frontline and were waiting for it to arrive. As she couldn't guarantee when it would be in and I didn't fancy trying to find it from another source (serves me right for leaving it till the last minute!) she suggested I try Advantage instead. So :
Advantage is made by Bayer, the box being approx 2" x 4". It has a picture of 3 dogs on the front top half and the word Advantage in green across the 2nd half.
It states it contains Imidacloprid 100mg/ml and is a flea treatment and prevention for dogs 4kg to less than 10kg.
The reverse of the box states instructions, safety precautions and usage.
It has an expiry date of 08/2006 so if you treat your dog monthly, as guidelines and vets recommend, then you will use this well within that date.
The usual safety and instruction leaflet (explained below).
4 tubes of flea treatment contained within a foil 'pop-out' holder akin to the sort that house headache tablets.
Also you get 4 calendar stickers so you can put one on your calendar/diary as a reminder for when treatment is due for the coming months.
These are approx 1 and a half inches in length. The actual liquid is contained in half this length, the other half being a slim lid.
The tube is a soft plastic and not metal as some may traditionally think.
Each tube states the ingredient, batch number and expiry date. Handy if you lose the box!
To open you simply twist and pull. (The lid is ridges to help you get a better grip.) Then use the other end of the lid to push and break the seal on the tube.
HOW TO USE
Basically most flea drop treatments are applied in the same way.
Firstly grab your dog! Part the fur between the shoulder blades or back of neck until you can see the skin.
Then place the tip of the tube onto the skin and squeeze several times gently to apply the liquid onto the exposed skin. There is no need to rub this in.
Sometimes the above is easier said than done! Having a boisterous Terrier means that she is not going to lay down or sit nicely on my lap! She wants her nose right in there to see whats going on. So she gets tucked under my sons arm, his other hand holding her head still, leaving me free to apply the drops.
As I always remove her collar I find its easier to part the fur and apply there as, no matter how loose the collar, there is always a ridged section of fur. Once applied I tend to leave her collar off for a couple of hours and avoid touching that area. The instructions state you should leave the area to dry although they do not suggest a length of time for this to happen! I find that its usually ok after an hour or so.
Applying in this area means that there is no way your dog can lick this. Bayer say that if a dog licks this liquid 'they may occasionally salivate' as it is bitter tasting. I will take their word on this as I have no wish to try it (sorry!)
Therefore make sure that you don't spill any and wash your hands immediately after use. If you have 2 or more dogs try to make sure that they do not groom one another until the liquid has dried.
There are quite a few of these but as safety is paramount to the dog and owner I will list them even though some are common sense.
Do not use on damaged skin.
Do not use on dogs less than 4kg or more than 10kg.
Do not use on unweaned pups less than 8 weeks old.
Do not eat, drink or smoke during application ( I assume this means us and not the dog!)
Wash hands thoroughly after use.
People with sensitive skin may be particularly sensitive to Advantage. I suggest just wearing a pair of rubber gloves. I don't but it would not make it harder to apply if you did.
Avoid contact with eyes.
If swallowed seek medical treatment.
Keep away from children
Do not use after expiry date.
Treat every 4 weeks but if there is an infestation you can use weekly.
As with most dog treatments, everything is done by weight. Other treatment sizes are as follows :
PLEASE NOTE FOR SOME REASON ADVANTAGE LIST THESE IN LBS AND NOT KILO's
Advantage Green Box for dogs 3-10lb
Advantage Teal Box for dogs 11-20lbs
Advantage Red Box for dogs 21-55lbs
Advantage Blue Box for dogs 55lbs plus.
They do also do ADVANTAGE FOR CATS.
Animal Health Business Group
Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk
AVAILABILITY AND PRICE
This is a PRESCRIPTION ONLY products so available at vets. It cost me £16.93 including VAT for the 4 tubes.
I was extremely sceptical about changing products. After all I thought nothing was better than Frontline, having always used it and this must have showed on my face as the vet nurse found a vet to have a quick word with me. He assured me that it was very similar to Frontline in the way its works and the application but in his opinion Advantage was better than Frontline! Hmm I thought, a sales pitch? But knowing my vet is more concerned with his animal patients than his profits I trusted his judgement.
Having now used this for seven months I am more than happy with it and will not change back. I have found many plus points for using Advantage .
Firstly you get 4 tubes whereas our previous brand contained 3.
The plastic the tubes are made from is softer than before, which means it is a more comfortable feeling for the dog. Before the hard and sometimes sharp plastic used to catch her skin but no more does this happen.
I do not need to use scissors to snip the end off the tube as these as self opening.
There is no noticeable smell with Advantage whereas before Jadie would get one whiff and go absolutely potty and try to 'escape'!.
The price is great! I paid £16.93 for the box of 4. Previous brand would have set me back £23-24 and I would have only got 3 tubes!
Obviously as I only buy the small weight box, I am unable to tell you the price saving on other weights but assume they will be roughly in line with the above. For a treatment that pet owners need regularly a saving of £7 plus and extra months worth of treatment if definitely a plus point!
Advantage does work and is just as efficient as our previous brand. I have watched her like a hawk and can safely safe she has not scratched at all. There have been no problems or ill effects from changing brands (although they all contain a similar list of ingredient anyway)
So overall I would heartily recommend Advantage. Not only do I have a happy dog, I am an extremely happy owner with a few more pennies in my purse!
4 out of 5 stars from me. One lost simply because they list kgs by weight on the box and by lbs on the web.
Thanks for reading. x x
© Hotbabes 2005
Fleas, I hate them. They cause so many problems for my animals that I try to avoid them becoming infested in the first place. Fleas aren't fun, so just ask your dog or cat! The veterinary surgeon that I use for my animals in Cambridge recommends Advantage. It comes in a variety of sizes; the dosage depends upon the weight of an individual animal. I use Advantage 250 for both Scamp and Shaggie but the recommended minimum dosage is 10 mg per kg body weight for both dogs and cats. Advantage is the trade name for Imidacloprid. The chemical formula is 1-[(6-Chloro-3-pyridinyl) methyl] - N-nitro-2-imidazolidinimine. It has pronounced insecticidal properties ideal for treating fleas, with no acaricidal properties, which could damage mammals e.g. Scamp and Shaggie! ** How does Advantage work** 1) It kills fleas on direct contact. Before FLEAS have a chance to lay any Advantage is able to work. 2) It not only kills those pesky fleas, but their larvae too. 3) It works FAST. This means Advantage kills around 98-100 percent of fleas within 12 hours. The dogs then can get back to doing the things they love in life like chewing Shane?s shoes and Max?s (the cat) toy mice, instead of scratching! 4) Advantage is water-resistant; so water-loving dogs will also be treated. Not a problem in my home as Scamp hates cold water and Shaggie; well she has not been introduced to the delights of a bath or the sea yet! 5) Advantage is gentle enough to use on youngsters too. Always check with the vet before applying this treatment to prevent over dosing your pet. 6) Advantage kills fleas, thus helping to reduce the incidence of flea allergy dermatitis. 7) Advantage is backed by Bayer (A trusted and dedicated name in animal health, providing a wide selection of drugs for the veterinary profession). *IMPORTANT* After application to the back of the neck, do not allow you pet t
o groom, as this drug is highly concentrated and can cause the animal to become ill. Always wash hands after applying the drug to your pet and do not eat, drink or smoke whilst applying the drug either. **The Advantages of Imidacloprid** 1) This drug has a unique mode of action differentiates imidacloprid from organophosphates, pyrethrins, carbamates, insect growth regulators and insect development inhibitors. 2) There is as yet no known resistance or cross-resistance. 3) Imidacloprid is selectively active against all-adult fleas and flea larvae. **Imidacloprid?s Properties ** Non-allergenic Non-carcinogenic Non-hypersensitizing Non-mutagenic Non-photosensitizing Non-teratogenic Being flea-free certainly can be a big advantage to any domestic pet. I was a little wary about this type of treatment after reading so adverse effects in medical journals about this type of treatment. A. Liebisch and U. Reimann from Hannover Sch Vet Med, Inst. Parasitol, Hannover, GERMANY published ?Canine Practice? in 2000. Imidacloprid is a new active ingredient with high activity against fleas. This piece of research documented the effective, long-lasting and easy-to-apply insecticides for control of fleas in pets are required in veterinary practice to overcome the increasing flea problems world-wide. **Cost** £12 for a pack of 4 droppers available from veterinary surgeries, last around four months. (One dropper per month. This drug is worthwhile to use on pets in order to keep them flea free. The instructions, which are printed on the back of the box, are simple and easy to follow. ?So Scamp and Shaggie STOP SCRATCHING, and don?t you join in too Max!? **For More Information** Bayer plc Animal Health Business Group Eastern Way Bury St. Edmunds Suffolk IP32 7AH T
elephone Number: 01284 763200
Dont you just think the new "spot-on" flea treatments are great?! They are such a great invention (but yet so simple, mind you thats like with most good idea's!). The old spray on varieties are fine, as long as your dog (or cat more particularly!) is one of those that lets you do anything (within reason!) to it! Unlike my cat, he HATES flea sprays! The only decent way to get him to stand still is to get about 3 people holding him while I spray him! So the "spot-on"'s are a life saver (exept maybe not for the flea's!) Im doing a veterinary nursing course (along side my A-levels) and ive heard many good things about the spot-on varieties, mainly from those people in the class that are actually in a vets practice, and are doing the course to actually qualify as a veterinary nurse. They all think they're great!! Ive spent 2 weeks work experience at 2 different vet's practices, all the nurses their and the vets have thought them to be wonderful! Infact while I was at one of them we had a rep around trying to get the vets to buy the products, the videos and talks the rep gave about "Advantage 'spot-on's" would have persuaded anyone to buy them (mind you thats a rep's job right!) All I can say is that they're definately worth that little extra money. If you're worried about the stories in the paper a few yrs about about the cats that died from having this type of treatment, then id not worry any more (after all I use it on my cat...and I wouldnt if I thought it would kill him!) - veterinary science has come a long way since then, and according to my veterinary nursing teacher, the majority of the cases of deaths were due to the products being used after their use-by dates. Thats one thing you really have to watch with things like that...NEVER you it after the use-by date - I know it means buying some new...but do you really want to kill your cat/dog?? Definately re
commend the Advantage range, including flea treatments, plus other products!
After trying just about every anti-flea medication that is cheaply available from supermarkets, a friend recommended us to see a vet and get Advantage drops for our cat. And guess what? IT WORKED! :-) ~~ What is it? ~~ Advantage is a product line that aims to prevent and treat flea infestations, and the resulting complications like flea allergies. It is manufactured by the Bayer Animal Health Business Group, who also produce other popular pet medication, such as 'Drontal' worming tablets. It includes products for cats and dogs of varied sizes/weights, both for young as well as adult pets. The product we used was Advantage 80, for cats of 4kg and over (he is on the large side ;-) ), and it comes in a small plastic tube that contains 0.8 ml of a 10% Imidacloprid (= 80 mg) solution, which is of a gel-like consistency and has a slight almondy fragrance. As the product only works for approximately 4 weeks, it is handily available in packs of 4 tubes (they cost around £11 per 4-pack), so you will just have to re-stock every 4 months. The pack also contains 4 stickers on which you can note down the date of the last application as well as the name of the pet, should you have several cats to treat. You should store it away from children as well as food and drink and, just like other medication, never use it after the expiry date which is imprinted on every tube. Unlike weaker (in my opinion ineffective) flea treatments that are available in most pet shops and supermarkets, you will have to go to your vet to buy this product, and you will only receive it if your pet has been previously examined there. ~~ How do you apply it and how does it work? ~~ The small tube has a security seal, which has to be broken with the cap in order to extract the gel. You have to hold your cat still and part the hair in the neck area (where they can't reach it with their tong
ue), then squirt the contents of the tube onto the spot. If you have several cats, you MUST observe them after the treatment and stop them if they try licking the liquid off each other's necks, as this will inhibit the full effects. Also, avoid getting your cat extremely wet (through strong rain) until the product has thoroughly dried - once dry, it is mostly water-resistant. Following the application, the product will be absorbed and spread itself over your cat's skin, underneath the fur, to provide full coverage. Whenever fleas get into contact with Imidacloprid, be it through sucking from a treated cat or direct contact with the substance, they will get paralysed and then die within approximately 12 hours. In addition, the product also kills flea larvae, which represent a larger amount of fleas in the overall life cycle than adult fleas and stops the next generation of fleas from growing up. (Now that sounds sooo cruel! ;-) ) This happens on contact with the pet and makes sure that not only your cat but also her bedding, your carpets and furniture stay flea-free. The product is harmless for mammals (it can be harmful to fish but then again, a cat in itself is ;-) ) and it has been proven that pets suffer no side effects even when 5 times the recommended dose is applied. ~~ More Info ~~ http://www.nofleas.com is the official (international) website for this product. It contains useful information about the product range (for both cats and dogs) as well as tips on taking your pet on holidays, a more technical/scientific 'vets only' section, promotional offers and 'fun' sections like 'The latest singing Sensation' about singing pets ;-) ~~ Verdict ~~ This stuff has literally changed my cat's life as well as ours - before the treatment, he was often tired and scratching himself a lot. Now he is a lot more playful and friendly, and has
much more time *on his paws* for playing and cuddling, as he isn't busy scratching himself 24/7. We haven't experienced any adverse effects and the method of application is a lot easier than with flea sprays or powders, as it is quick and limited to a small area - you don't have to chase after a terrified kitty whirling a large, heavy aerosol! :-) I would recommend this product to anyone who has cats (or dogs) with a flea problem or just for prevention. There are similar products that promise to break the flea's life cycle by killing off the eggs and larvae (without killing off adult fleas), but as long as your cat goes outside and gets into contact with other cats, this is the only product that works. An Advantage? Definitely!
Having had literally hundreds of cats over the years (I used to run an animal charity), I believe this is definitely the best treatment, from both the owner and cats' perspective against. The treatment works by placing a little tubeful of product on the back of the cat's neck (it's placed here so the cat is less likely to lick it off before it can take effect); and as it dries it works through the whole coat, removing the flea problem for around a month. This should not be confused, by the way, with the organophosphates which worked systemically and ended up with a number of animal deaths - this is not absorbed into the system. It's good for the owner because it's easy to apply. We previously used Frontline, which worked great once it was on - but getting 20 squirts on a recalcitrant cat is quite a challenge! The cats also find it least distressing. they don't like it at first - I think the fleas must become agitated for the first few hours because the cat doesn't seem quite at ease, if they are already infested, then. But they soon settle down and the treatment is highly effective. If the cat gets caught in the rain though, and you end up with a truly soggy moggy, the treatment will need to be reapplied. For the record - this is nothing like the supermarket treatment which caused problems for others. This is available only on prescription from vets.
I had a similar experience to Genie's using back-of-the neck flea drops. The ones we used were Advantage, and four of our cats got a dose (couple of drops applied to the back of the neck) before we realised there was a problem. One cat, our highly-strung Oriental, started bombing around the room as if the devil was after him, and then started to walk very slowly, swaying, and collapsed. We got him to the vet's, and he recovered to a degree, but he's not been the same cat since; he pulls his fur out in chunks, he's immensely nervous, and we've had to put him on cat anti-depressants. He's now just not the same cat he was, and the vet posits that his brain may have been damaged. Two of our cats had no reaction, but another was noticed behaving very strangely (jumping at things that weren't there, and flinching away from us and from invisible stuff) as well for about a week afterwards. Obviously, we never used the stuff again. Then, on a visit to my boyfriend's parent's house, I mentioned the Advantage saga, and was horrified to find that their cat had had a really bad reaction to it as well; no collapsing, but he seemed dizzy and was extremely paranoid for a week or so afterwards. Turns out that the stuff's an organophosphate. It's not supposed to have an adverse effect on cats, but apart from the ones I've mentioned here, I've heard other stories about similar reactions since. We've felt terrible for subjecting our cats to it. Now they're injected twice a year with Program (a contraceptive for fleas), and have had no ill effects with that. Please, please don't let your cats anywhere near the stuff.
I recently purchased what I thought would be a bargain buy....only to end up injuring my cat. It is the super-market equivalent of the treatment for cats, to ward off fleas. Sorry, I can't remember the name, but vets will know if you enquire. The product I bought is made by bob martin, a name usually trustworthy for pets. It is called "SPOT ON" I could call it something else....like burn skin! Anyway, it is a tube of liquid, that you squeeze onto the back of your puss's neck. It kills off the fleas and prevents the cycle of eggs hatching. Tails, my cat (named by the kids) was rescued from a bad home by the RSPCA, then came to us. As she has had a hard time, rather than getting her injected, or cooping her up in the cat carrier, I thought I would use this. I followed the instructions, and the next day, she had a bald patch, and her skin was burnt! Immediately, I bathed her (making me enemy of the moment!) but the damage had been done. To heal, it took some cream from the vet and just over 3 weeks. Please for the sake of your kitty, do not try this.