An edited transcript is provided below: 

Today, we’re going to do a little update on flea medications. I haven’t talked about this in a little bit, so I kind of want to circle back to it because there are always new products that are out and I want to give you the latest information. 

To back up, if you haven’t seen our other blog posts, we don’t recommend the topical flea medications for dogs. They’ve been on the market for 20+ years, and they just really don’t work anymore. And plus, you have to worry about touching it, it gets that gross little spot on the back of their neck, and they say the meds don’t wash off, but they do. So, for those reasons, and it’s just an older molecule – it just doesn’t work as well, we don’t recommend them. We recommend the oral flea medications for dogs. I will give an update on flea medications for cats as well. For dogs we’re actually on to the second generation of the oral flea meds. The first generation, it works great, but it caused a lot of dogs to puke when they got it. And they absolutely hate the flavor of it. So everybody is shoving the pill down their throat and it’s just kind of a pain to give. The nice thing is the newer generation of the oral flea meds are much more palatable and the dogs love the flavor of it. They take it like a treat, it doesn’t cause the puking and it’s just a much easier thing to do. Plus, it treats fleas, ticks, and mites. So it’s really great for these young puppies that are getting things like demodex and scabies. It can treat those bugs at the standard doses. So we’re actually seeing a lot less skin disease in these young dogs, because of all these really beneficial properties to these new flea medications. My favorite of all these flea meds right now is something called Credelio. It’s a pill we give once a month, every single month, really great safety margin, dogs take it like a treat, and really very little downside to it. We still do recommend another one called Bravecto, which is nice because you only need to give that once every three months. So if you have a dog who is really difficult to take pills, and they won’t even take Credelio even though it’s highly palatable, Bravecto might be a better option. Also for dogs who just have a really sensitive gut, maybe a pill once every three months might actually be better for them than a once a month. These are the kinds of conversations we have in the exam room, is to choose what’s going to be the best option for your pet. 

Now, for cats, we still actually recommend the topical flea medication for cats because cats are very difficult to pill, but there are new flea medications out for cats that just are so much better and work better. They are in the same class of drugs as the oral flea medications for dogs. There’s a real positive benefit to these new flea medications too, and the latest one that we use is called Bravecto Plus. It’s a topical medication you put on the back of their neck. It treats fleas and ticks, as well as intestinal parasites, which is great because if your cat does go outside, it can pick up intestinal parasites from just being outside hunting mice, et cetera. So, that’s another really great benefit. But the best reason for this medication is that you only have to put it on once every other month. So you don’t have to chase your cat down every month and put it on, you get to skip a month, and have a little bit of a reprieve. So that’s nice for you and for your cat, it improves your relationship and we really like it for that reason as well. 

These are the most recent flea medications that are out there and what we’re recommending. When you come in for your exam, we’re going to have that conversation to see what’s going to be the best option for you and your pet. If you have any questions about that, please feel free to give us a call or schedule an exam. 

-Dr. Evans