As a pet owner, the thought of a flea infestation is probably among your worst nightmares. Not only do these pesky parasites cause discomfort for your cat or dog, but they can also spread throughout your home and can leave your entire family itching uncontrollably. Often, one of the first stopgap measures when you notice fleas on your pet is to try a flea comb. You can find a wide selection of these handy tools here at Walgreens.
What Are Fleas?
Fleas are wingless parasites that survive by feeding on the blood of either animals or humans. The bugs themselves are only a few millimeters long and can jump incredibly far considering their size. While adult fleas don't live for that long, they reproduce very quickly, and each female lays almost 30 eggs per day. Fleabites are itchy for both pets and their owners, but they can be much more uncomfortable for those with allergies to the bugs. Fleas might also spread diseases from the other animals they bite. While physical flea removal treatments like bathing and combing can help get rid of some of the discomfort caused by live fleas, you'll often need to combine these methods with internal or external chemical treatments in order to completely remedy the problem.
How to Use a Flea Comb
While a flea comb won't help you truly get rid of an infestation on your cat or dog, these handy products can be effectively used to give your pet some instant relief when he or she seems to be in intense discomfort. Flea combs can also help you diagnose whether itching is actually being caused by fleas or if there is some other culprit to blame. To begin the process of combing, grab a bucket or bowl and fill it with water and a splash of dish soap. This combination will help kill the fleas after removal. Next, begin to use the comb by starting on your pet's head and then working your way all the way back toward the tail. Always comb in the direction of hair growth and use firm pressure without pushing too hard. If your pet actually has fleas, you'll start to notice the bugs themselves getting collected between the teeth of the comb in addition to their eggs and your pet's dander. After every few strokes, remove the contents from the comb into your soapy water, and then keep combing until you've addressed every part of your furry friend.
Flea Combing Tips
Remember that your cats or dogs are likely to be feeling very uncomfortable from all the fleabites, so they may be less tolerant to the process than you would hope. Never put yourself or your pet in danger when trying to comb out fleas. If you notice signs of pain or it looks like your pet might try to bite or scratch you, then you should give up on combing for fleas and switch to a different method of treatment. Regardless of how your pet reacts, make sure to offer up plenty of rewards like treats and praise.