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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Medical Moment: Flea and Tick Treatments for your greyhound

by Candee Scott

Greyhounds are especially sensitive to toxic chemicals because of their thin skin, low body fat and fast metabolism. There are certain substances you must watch out for.

If you don’t have a flea or tick problem, don’t use a flea or tick product on a greyhound. Although we had a fairly hard winter and we will most likely have to deal with fleas and ticks this year after all we do live in Oklahoma and our summer heat is a breeding ground for these parasites.

Unnecessary chemicals are no healthier for your dog than they are for you. Be especially careful of flea and tick products. What is fine for another breed may be highly toxic for a Greyhound.

Products that are safe for greyhounds are: Revolution (fleas, ticks and heartworms), Frontline, Frontline Plus and Advantix and Advantix II (fleas and ticks), Advantage and Advantage II (fleas only). These are once a month topicals. Once again if you don’t have a problem i.e. you may have fleas, but not ticks then only use the flea product. My experience has been that although these products are safe for greyhounds sometimes they may have an allergic reaction such an inflammation or irritation (especially the white or light colored greyhounds). If you have a white greyhound you may want to put some fish oil at the application site along with the flea/tick product to soothe your greyhound’s skin or give them an antihistamine.

Flea collars are not recommended for greyhounds. They contain chemicals, which go directly into the greyhound’s bloodstream. They can cause severe illness or possibly death. We suggest you only use topical flea/tick treatments and only when needed. Preventic collars were tick collars that could be used on a greyhound. We believe they are no longer sold or made. A new collar that is greyhound safe is: Tick Arrest made by Francodex.

The only flea and tick shampoos that are safe for greyhounds are those with Pyrethrins as the main ingredient. Pyrethrins are natural organic compounds derived from chrysanthemums.

Never flea dip your greyhound. The chemicals in the dips are too strong, even when they are pyrethrin-based.

Good luck this flea and tick season and keep those hounds safe!

Candee

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