There’s nothing worse than watching your furry baby scratching and gnawing ferociously at a particular spot on his or her body. The fleas have declared war on your canine and it is your job to provide the best defense against those blood-sucking demons. This itchy and downright uncomfortable situation gets even worse when it is summer and the air is humid. If your dog has fleas, it will be a scratch fest for it; and the most strategic way to attack is with the best flea medication for dogs in 2021.
The best flea medication for dogs would effectively kill these disgusting critters and repel them. These meds kill fleas, ticks, biting flies, mosquitoes in all life stages; from egg, larvae, and adult. Not only that, it offers protection against re-infestation. There are a lot of these meds online, each with its own story. To save you the hassle of buying one that isn’t up to standard, we have recommended what we consider the best flea medication for dogs below and we have prepared a buying guide on all the necessary information needed to make the best choice for you and your canine.
Fleas aren’t just gross to look at - they are also dangerous. They can cause diseases that put your canine and even you at risk. Their best friend- Mr. Tick is even more disgusting to see on your fur baby’s skin. If you’ve ever seen an engorged tick on your dog’s skin feeding off its blood you’ll understand our derision. A question that is always on the mind of dog owners is, how do they get fleas on them? I bath and brush them regularly, where in the world is he picking up these parasitic critters?
Dogs can pick fleas from anywhere; your yard, local parks, the dog groomer, from the vet clinic, and even from other dogs. Dogs can also pick up fleas and ticks from hiking, camping, and exploring the wilderness with you. If your dog has fleas, the only thing that should be on your mind is how to get rid of them as quickly as possible. So how do you choose the best flea meds for dogs in 2021? That's the essence of this buying guide.
Going online to search for the best flea meds to buy without having adequate information isn’t something you would want to do. Why? You may end with a product that is not only ineffective but is harmful to your dog. We have prepared this detailed buying guide to help you navigate through all you need to know about buying the best flea meds.
What Are The Types Of Flea Medication?
Oral flea treatment
This type of flea medication comes in form of chewable or pills and can be ingested by your pet. When an adult tick bites your dog, the medicine is transmitted to the tick, killing it. There are some important active chemicals used in producing flea and tick medications.
Some of these active chemicals may last a month while others may only last for a few days. Some of the active chemicals you should look out for when buying oral flea meds are:
This chemical is a fast-acting insecticide that kills adult fleas in thirty minutes. This active ingredient is mostly used by vets to kill fleas quickly. It does not have a long-term effect, so it should not be used for continuous flea control. Any pill or chewable that contains nitenpyram kills fleas and ticks swiftly are approved to be used on cats and dogs by the FDA.
This chemical unlike nitenpyram does not kill adult fleas. It is more effective at killing any larvae produced by adult fleas. It does not kill ticks as well. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved this compound as safe to be used for both dogs and cats. You may want to buy medications that contain both lufenuron and nitenpyram.
This compound only kills adult fleas, it does not kill ticks. When fleas bite the skin of your dog, the chemical overstimulates the flea's nervous system, killing it in the process. Any medicine that contains the spinosad compound is not recommended for dogs with epilepsy. Spinosad is approved by the FDA to be safe for flea treatment.
Topical flea treatment
Topical flea medication is also known as "spot-on" medications. This type of treatment is generally applied between the pet's shoulder blades, and back so the pet cannot lick it off. Some topical medications may last for months, while others may last only for a few weeks or even days. Some topical medications not only kill fleas and ticks but also repel them and prevent re-infestation.
The best topical flea treatment is one that is waterproof. Topical treatment is more effective than oral pills; fleas don't have to bite your dog before they die. Upon contact with the treatment, it kills them in minutes. There are some important active ingredients to look out for when buying the best topical flea treatment.
Permethrin is a compound that is very effective at killing and repelling fleas in all life stages; from larvae to adults. This chemical is extremely toxic for cats, even a small quantity may be fatal. This compound is approved safe to be used on dogs by the FDA.
This compound works by overstimulating the nervous system of fleas and ticks, killing them in the process. This chemical spreads over your dog through body oils in about a day, killing everything in its path. It usually lasts for about and month is approved to be used on cats and dogs by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
This chemical kills fleas by attacking the nervous system. Upon contact with your pet, it kills fleas at all life stages; both adult and larvae. It is approved safe to be used on both cats and dogs by the Environmental Protection Agency.
These compounds are also called pyrethrin. It is an organic compound derived from a flower. This makes it really popular among dog owners who are more environmentally conscious. Pyrethroids can also be manufactured. These synthetic types are more effective and last longer.
This compound should not be used on cats and should be used carefully on small dog breeds. It is extremely toxic for felines, so be extra careful if you have a house full of cats and dogs. Pyrethroids are effective in killing fleas, ticks, mites, and other parasitic critters.
How Do I Choose The Best Flea Medication For My Dog?
Before buying any flea medication for your canine, you need to make sure that the med is approved and certified safe to be used on your dogs. It is important to note that some of these chemicals are extremely toxic to felines. So if you have a house full of cats, you need to ensure that they don't come in contact with these flea repelling chemicals.
Ease of use
Whatever flea medication that you want to buy should be very easy to use. If you're buying a topical flea treatment, it should have an applicator that is easy to open and use. If you're going for oral pills, it should be one that is easy to pop open and be stored easily. The best flea med for dogs is one that is easy and safe to use.
What’s the point of buying flea meds when they don’t actually kill fleas? It is a waste of money if you ask us. Listed above are some incredibly active chemicals that are effective at killing fleas. Ensure to consider these chemicals when buying the best flea medication for dogs.
By history, we mean that you need to do a little research in order to ascertain the effectiveness of flea meds. Look at customer reviews to know just how good a flea med is for your dog's breed and size.
Prescription vs. Over-the-counter?
Over-the-counter medications are meds that are not prescribed by the doctor since they are not meant to be ingested. These flea treatments are usually topically applied to the body of your dog, as long as they are approved by the FDA, they can be used.
Prescription medications on the other hand require an approved prescription from a licensed medical professional before they can be issued out. They could be oral, topical, injections, or powders all of which should be approved by the FDA safe to use.
This product is suitable for extra-large dog breeds weighing 55 pounds or more. It is available in a 2 monthly dose pack, 4 monthly dose pack, 6 monthly dose pack, and 8 monthly dose pack sizes.
The K9 Advantix II flea medicine kills and repels fleas, ticks, and other parasites. It is to be applied topically onto the skin and is waterproof. The active ingredient contained in this product is permethrin and it has a lasting effect of one month. It kills fleas within 12 hours and ticks as early as 10 minutes. It should not be applied anywhere within reach of your dog’s mouth.
This product is suitable for all sizes and breeds of dogs. It can be used on small dogs that weigh as low as 5 pounds and large dogs that weigh as much as 55 pounds.
The Pet Armor flea medicine is an effective flea and tick treatment. It is available in 1, 3, 6, and 12 application packs. This product should be applied topically from head to tail and it offers protection against flea for up to 30 days. The active ingredient in this medication is fipronil and it is water-proof. It kills existing fleas and ticks as well as their eggs and larvae. This product takes up to 12 hours before it starts to work and it comes with three applicators.
This product has two combine active ingredients; pyriproxyfen and Imidacloprid. These ingredients are effective at killing fleas, ticks, and their eggs or larvae.
The Advecta flea medicine is available in sizes; small, medium, large and extra-large. It is to be applied topically and it comes in a 16 millimeters applicator. It effectively kills all the life stages of the flea, it kills them within 12 hours and protects against re-infestation for up to four months. It provides five-way protection against fleas, ticks, biting flies, mosquitoes, and lice. This product is fragrance-free and is also waterproof.
It repels and kills all life stages of the flea
It is waterproof and does not wash off when wet
It offers protection against re-infestation for up to four months
It may be harsh for skin-sensitive dogs
Best Dog Flea Medicines FAQs
Q: How do flea meds work?
A: It depends on the type of flea med. Oral medications kill fleas when they bite a dog that has ingested a pill or chewable and topical medications kill fleas by disrupting their nervous system upon contact.
Q: Are flea medications safe to use on my dog?
A: Yes, it is. As long as the said medication is approved by either the FDA or the EDA, it is safe to use on your dog.
Q: Can I use the same flea medication on both my cat and dog?
A: Absolutely not! As a matter of fact, some flea medications are extremely toxic for felines. It is only safe to use if it is clearly stated that it can be used for cats. If not, do not use it.
Destin has experience working with dogs in the most high stress environments on earth. He currently is a canine handler as a security contractor, helping to keep US diplomats safe in some of the most dangerous regions of the world.