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Flea and worm prevention

Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by LeArthur, May 13, 2017.


  1. LeArthur

    LeArthur PetForums VIP

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    Basically I'm finding the whole flea and worming thing a bit of a minefield and I'm looking for some advice.

    Arthur is just over 5 months old and was treated with Panacur paste and Frontline at about 11 weeks old (before we brought him home when he was 12 weeks anyway). I haven't given him any since as I'm not sure if I should. Arthur is an indoor cat, he does go out on a harness into the garden but that's as far as he goes. He's an only pet as well so no little beasties can be carried in on dogs fur or anything.

    So, do I need to use Frontline every month and Panacur around 4 times a year? Or is there some sort of natural preventative I can use? I've read a little about garlic.

    I feel like I'm making a mountain out of a molehill :oops:
     
  2. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @lea247, with flea treatments basically the only wise options are either:-
    a) to treat your cat preventatively once a month
    or b) to only treat your cat if you see fleas.

    All my cats go outdoors, two of them are restricted to the garden. One of my cats has a flea allergy (acquired before I adopted him) so I treat him once a month without fail with Stronghold. Just one flea bite could trigger the allergy again, so I am strict about keeping to the monthly treatments.

    My other cats I would only treat if I saw evidence of fleas on them. If I saw evidence of fleas I would treat all of them, and would also treat the house with an effective household insecticide such as Indorex, Acclaim or RIP Fleas.

    If I had indoor cats (and no dogs) I would not give flea treatments unless I saw evidence of fleas on my cats.

    My cat with the flea allergy hunts and eats mice, so I worm him every 4 months or so. The others sometimes hunt but never eat their prey so I don't worm them regularly and would only do so if I saw evidence of worms.

    As with flea treatments - if my cats were all indoor cats I would not worm them unless I saw evidence they had worms, or was suspicious they might have them.

    It is worth noting that Frontline (and any treatments that contain fipronil) are no longer effective in parts of the UK, so if you do ever need to treat for fleas it would be better to use a different insecticide (e.g. Advantage, Stronghold, Activyl or Bravecto )

    EDIT: Please don't use garlic treatments - garlic is toxic to cats. Most "natural" flea treatments are best avoided IMO. They have not been through the same rigorous safety trials as the equivalent products licensed for veterinary use, and worse, they may not even work.
     
    #2 chillminx, May 13, 2017
    Last edited: May 13, 2017
  3. LeArthur

    LeArthur PetForums VIP

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    Ah thank you so much for your reply @chillminx, it has definitely put my mind at rest :)
     
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  4. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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    It's worth looking through the rather long cat proof your garden thread. If other cats can't get in and your cat can't get out then you have reduced the risk of fleas & worms from the garden to almost zero. This is the situation for my own cats, I've not treated for fleas for several years though I have used Frontline when there has been thunderfly problems, and I worm once a year with Milbemax.
     
  5. LeArthur

    LeArthur PetForums VIP

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    Thanks for that @OrientalSlave but as we are in a rented house at the moment so that isn't an option. We have high walls all around the yard (approximately 6 foot) with only a few pots in. It's not very tempting for a cat who doesn't live here but Arthur really enjoys watching the birds fly over head and trying to catch flies. I am seriously considering cat proofing once we are in our own home :)

    Out of curiosity though, why do you worm once a year and not more frequently?
     
  6. Nutty15

    Nutty15 PetForums Junior

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    Sorry to come into the thread with my own query but hopefully this may help others anyway. chillminx, out of interest - for your cat that you treat regularly with Stronghold, which tapewormer do you use? I currently use Stronghold every month too and had previously wormed Nutmeg every 3 months as advised by my vet with Droncit spot-on. However that needs 2 ampules of treatment for her weight, which I dislike doing; I tried her recently with half the Droncit tablet instead crushed into her food but despite all my usual 'tricks' for temptation she wouldn't go anywhere near the food! I'm useless at putting pills in whole myself so that won't work. Not sure if there is an alternative...she is an outdoor cat and definitely hunts, thought can't be sure whether or not she actually eats anything. I know the Stronghold treats for other worms so not sure if using a multiwormer every 3 months would be overdosing? The worming/flea treatment is definitely a minefield.
     
  7. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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    My cats don't have a lifestyle which would lead to them getting worms, and there have been no signs in them or in the kittens I have bred. I do worm queens just before delivery is due, and I do worm kittens at 6 & 12 weeks.
     
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  8. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I use Milbemax total wormer for him. (a tiny tablet I crush and put in his food).

    I was concerned about overdosing him with chemicals as I use Stronghold, (which as you say is a partial wormer) but the vet gave her approval. I am not entirely happy about it, but like you with your cat I couldn't get mine to take Droncit in his food and the Droncit spot-on gave him a sore patch on the back of his neck. Also he hates having spot on treatment and gets very stressed about it.

    I tried him with two other anti-flea spot-ons - Advantage and Activyl (each contains a different insecticide) but he got very stressed by the smell of them, and also both treatments triggered my asthma. I have considered using the Program tablets or the 6 mth Program injection. They prevent the fleas breeding but don't kill any fleas on the cat. But as I have never seen any fleas on him it should be OK to use Program. Otherwise it can be used with e.g. Capstar.
     
    #8 chillminx, May 14, 2017
    Last edited: May 14, 2017
  9. Nutty15

    Nutty15 PetForums Junior

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    Thanks very much for this....yes, I am reluctant to change from the Stronghold too as I find it works really well and importantly doesn't seem to cause her any distress; I like the fact it is ovicidal and covers against a lot of things. So I will definitely look into the Milbemax from my vet - thanks again.
     
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  10. Lucy & Troy

    Lucy & Troy PetForums Junior

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    I treated my cat with stronghold just over a fortnight ago as he had fleas. It worked amazingly, however 2 days ago he went outside for literally 10 minutes and played with my neighbours cat (he's only ten months old and has only just started asking to go outside, and never goes outside the garden and never for long-term his own preference but I'm sure that he'll get braver eventually!) and I've found another flea today.
    When I took him for his vaccinations the vet said stronghold can be used monthly, is it safe to use it now? I really don't want a flea infestation, makes me itch just thinking about it!
    And also I don't want to keep him indoors, but the other cats in the area obviously have a flea problem and it's going to become my problem if he continously catches them from other cats. Don't want to offend my neighbours by suggesting that their cats have fleas, and to be honest I don't see how they can't know?!
     
  11. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Hi there @Lucy & Troy - have you also treated your home with a household flea killer in the past 6 months? Best makes are Acclaim, Indorex and RIP Fleas.

    The RIP website explains about "The Pupal Window" and how to go about treating your home:

    http://www.ripfleas.co.uk/pupal-window/

    http://www.ripfleas.co.uk/r-i-p-fleas-extra/

    If you are on friendly terms with your neighbour perhaps you could start a conversation with her by saying you're having a problem keeping your cat free of fleas, and then innocently ask her what flea treatments she finds most effective for her cat.

    But I would not recommend you ever suggesting her cat is passing fleas to your cat as it is bound not to go down well. :( . I am sure if you keep raising the subject generally (as your problem i.e. ) the penny will drop soon! :)
     
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  12. Lucy & Troy

    Lucy & Troy PetForums Junior

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    I haven't actually treated my house so I will do do straight away; I thought that once treated with stronghold that the fleas couldn't survive on Troy, and any of the little buggers in the carpet or lurking round my house would just die without Troy to snack on.
    Very informative, I won't bother treating him till I've bought stuff for my house as well.
    Thanks!
     
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  13. Lucy & Troy

    Lucy & Troy PetForums Junior

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    Hey everyone, I'm back - and so are the sodding fleas!
    I treated my house with rip fleas as suggested by chillminx (thanks!) and did his monthly stronghold treatment. All was going great for a couple of weeks. I brush troy for a couple of minutes every evening when he comes in (he's now going outside regularly and staying out for hours at a time) and I found a flea, a pretty big adult one. I killed it and got the flea comb out and spent a good ten minutes brushing him with the flea comb. I didn't find any other visitors that night, but I do find the odd one or two a few times a week.
    I've spoken to my neighbour; she has a Tom cat and Troy and him are often together, troy even goes through their cat flap and gets Russ to come outside and play! Anyway she uses frontline monthly and has the same problem; her cat picks them up again in a couple of weeks.
    She told me that there are a lot of stray/feral cats in our area, there's at least 4 entire Tom cats with no owner that hang around our area- one of them even goes through my neighbours cat flap and steals her cats food, then sprays around her house before leaving!!
    I'm assuming that these homeless moggies must be pretty infested with fleas if they're not getting treated, and they must be the source of Troys little visitors. I don't have a clue what to do about it though, I can't afford to treat all the strays in our area every month, and I doubt that most of them would let me near enough anyway. A few people in our cul de sac put food out for them so they're not starving at least.
    Any ideas?!
    Thanks for reading!
     
  14. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Hi @Lucy & Troy, the spot-on flea treatments are intended to have a preventative effect for a month. So even if there are a lot of stray or feral cats around Troy should be OK as long as you keep up the once a month Stronghold. One of my neutered males (a rescued stray) is treated every month without fail with Stronghold as he has a flea allergy. There are several farms near us with a number of semi-feral cats, but my cat never picks up fleas from them.

    Frontline is no longer very effective at killing fleas in some parts of the country, and so I strongly advise you to recommend to your neighbour that she uses Advantage instead which does work. It is available without a prescription from Pets@Home and other pet stores. I doubt it costs any more than Frontline.

    Also, it is v. important your neighbour stops strays from getting into her house, as they no doubt will be bringing in fleas, and passing them to her cat. It is so easy these days to resolve this with a Microchip cat flap, they have come down in price such a lot. Cheapest at present for under £53 is Fetch or Zooplus UK.

    https://fetch.co.uk/sureflap-microc...jmvszbxntsTxNitmogwYFTrIhA2L4a3a0EaAjhl8P8HAQ

    http://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/...HeGB4aSPnXc3RqgC6-nhtEkbr5dXR7-7M4aAgzW8P8HAQ

    If your neighbour can't afford one buy her one as a present. :) It is in your interest to stop your cat being in an environment where there are fleas, so worth every penny I'd have thought to keep him out of your neighbour's house.
     
    #14 chillminx, Jul 17, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017
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