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Fleas, ticks and other parasites pose a danger to your dog or cat. Parasites are organisms that feed on other animals. These freeloaders cause symptoms like itching, but they can also lead to very serious illnesses. Parasites also pose a danger to you and your family. Many types of parasites cause zoonotic infections that can spread from pets to people.
Many different types of parasites threaten the health of your pet, including:
Fleas are the most common external parasite affecting dogs and cats. These bloodsucking insects are usually worse in summer months but, because they can live indoors, fleas can pose a problem during cooler seasons too. Flea bites cause itchy symptoms of dermatitis. Fleas can carry and transmit diseases, such as tapeworm, to humans and people. They can also carry the bacteria Bartonella that causes cat scratch disease.
Ticks are just as bad as fleas for your pet’s health and for yours. Ticks cause irritation or infection where they attach to your pet’s sin. Pets can suffer sporadic infestations with just a few ticks, or massive infestations that cause weight loss, anemia or even death.
Ticks may carry Borrelia, a bacterium that causes Lyme disease. The most common tick in Arizona is the brown dog tick that can carry Ehrlichia, an organism that can cause ehrlichiosis and anaplasmosis, which are serious illnesses. The lone star tick, less common in Arizona, produces a toxin that can cause paralysis.
Parasite control in Phoenix aims at preventing parasitic infections before they happen. Advances in veterinary medicine make it possible to prevent most parasitic infections, but many pet owners are unaware of the appropriate measures they need to take to protect their pets and their families.
Parasite control starts at home. Family members should always wash their hands after touching an animal. This reduces the risk of transferring parasites from one pet to another, or from a pet to a human. Groom your pet frequently to remove parasites from its coat. Clean up pet feces immediately, as intestinal worms transmit eggs or larva in feces.
Consult with our vet to learn more about parasite control in Phoenix. Parasites vary by location, so pets living in Arizona have different parasite protection needs than do those in Maine, for example.
Starting at a young age, all dogs and cats need regular parasite control from a veterinarian. Care includes physical exams every six to 12 months, annual heartworm checks for dogs and pre-treatment heartworm checks for cats, annual checks for tick-transmitted diseases and regular fecal exams.
Our vet may administer parasite control medications that protect your pet from heartworm, intestinal parasites, fleas, and ticks. Our Phoenix veterinarian also provides parasite control protection for your puppy or kitten.
Protect your pet and your family from dangerous parasites by making an appointment with our vet. North Central Animal Hospital is conveniently located at 20 W Dunlap Ave in Phoenix, AZ. Make an appointment for parasite control for your pet today by calling (602) 395-9773.