How to get rid of fleas on my cat
Having addressed the first part of the process by treating your home, you must now treat
the star of the show, your cat.
Flea treatment for cats:
There are many flea treatment options for cats that may help prevent future infestations. Options include, flea combs, flea collars, flea sprays, topical treatments, tablet treatment etc.
Whatever treatment plan you decide to follow, it is always best to start by;
Bathing your cat
To be fair, bathing your cat may be a tricky experience compared to a dog. Few cats like water at the best of times, but they may tolerate it due to the feeling of being groomed with a flea comb, especially as they are feeling itchy. Wash your cat as thoroughly as possible with a flea shampoo and use a flea comb to start ridding him of the hatched adult fleas immediately. Flea combs are simple to use, begin at your cat’s head, comb both ears, down their neck, under arm-pits (legs), and near the tail. If your cat is a long-haired breed, then you may find it takes longer but persevere as every flea you kill is one less hopping on your pet and transferring into your home.
If you find live fleas trapped in the teeth of the comb act fast to dispose of them by instantly pinching them and putting them/the comb if still trapped in the comb’s teeth, directly into a bowl of hot soapy water. (fleas die in the soapy water). Continue this for as long as your cat will cooperate!
TOP TIPs for Flea treatment for cats If your cat is the sort to detest water, try soaking a towel in warm water and then wrapping your cat up in it / rubbing it over your cat to get him wet before applying shampoo. Most cats are happier with this scenario than a bath. To rinse it may be necessary to use a shower-head, be sure to always check the water temperature.
*IMPORTANT* Bathing and combing out fleas is a temporary measure. It will only remove fleas present at that time and not treat the overall problem. You must kill the fleas that are present on your cat right now, and also kill those that will hatch and hop onto him later if the cycle is not broken.
Of course you must make sure that if you have other pets that you treat them at the same time. For treatment advise for your dog click here and if you have young pets please make sure you read our section on treating young animals.
There are several topical insecticide products such as Advantage and Frontline that are excellent not only for getting rid of fleas but keeping them from returning by breaking the flea life-cycle. There are also several excellent tablet form flea treatments with amazingly speedy results. Products such as flea collars, flea powders for pets are also very good additional supporting weapons in the fight against fleas.
Topical Insecticide Spot Ons:
(Some of the best are: Frontline, Advantage, Virbac Effipro, Beaphar, Eliminall, Flevox, Fiprospot)
When deciding your treatments, the spot-on topical treatments and tablets really are the most effective way forward. Granted topical spot-on insecticides and/or tablets are not cheap, but they really do work and that surely is the most important thing. When first viewing the cost, just remember ‘you get what you pay for’ with flea treatments. Better to treat properly than a million times unsuccessfully, after-all who wants to share their home with fleas?
Most topical insecticides like Frontline or tablets like Comfortis recommend monthly usage but once you have broken the flea cycle in your home, less usage is sufficient – just be sure you are clear first and remember fleas can appear at any time from a variety of sources, the local neighbourhood cat may be friendly but can also bring unwanted visitors… so make sure you are protected!