Step One: Apply Frontline Plus to all animals (this can be done every 3 weeks if you see fleas).

Step Two: Clean the house or apartment

  • Vacuum floors once every week (even hard wood floors)
  • Wash all bedding in HOT water
  • If you want to use a Flea Fogger (aka Flea Bomb) you can, be sure to follow all safety requirements.
  • Use a flea spray on large furniture (couch or bed)

Step Three: Repeat every time you apply Frontline.

Things to remember about Fleas and Frontline Plus

DO NOT BATHE 48 hrs before applying Frontline or 48 hrs after applying.

Where do animals get fleas?

Cats and dogs can pick up fleas from wild life such as Foxes, raccoons and opossums.

You can bring fleas into your home on your clothing or shoes from an infested environment.

Fleas can move from apartment to apartment.

Groomers, boarding facilities, dog parks.

Fun Flea facts

Female flea can lay up to 50 eggs per day.

The four stages of a flea are Egg, Larvae, Pupae and Adult.

Frontline kills the Egg, Larvae and Adult life stage.

NOTHING kills the Pupae stage. During this stage the new adult flea waits in a protective cocoon for the next available blood meal. All pupae will have to hatch out and be killed as adult fleas on the pet. This process can take several weeks.

Things not to do when you have a flea issue

Flea dips; flea bath and flea powders contain chemicals that can harm both pets and humans.  Side effects to pets can be organ failure, seizure even death.

Flea collars only protect the neck are and also contain chemicals that can be harmful to both pets and humans.

Home remedies – don’t always work.  Most home remedies contain garlic and onions which are toxic to your pet.

Flea and Tick Products

By: Tim DiPaoloVeterinary Assistant

It is advised to use a flea and tick preventative year round for best protection, it is especially important to make sure your four legged friends are well protected in the warmer months. At Dehler Animal Clinic we offer a variety of medications to help our clients do just that.

As tick populations rise the possibility of several tick-borne illnesses does too. Lyme disease, Anaplasmosis and Tick Paralysis are transmitted by the Deer Tick, Ixodes scapularis. This tick species is well established in Maine, especially in coastal areas. The Brown Dog Tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus, transmits Ehrlichiosis, Babesiosis and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. The American Dog Tick (also called the Wood Tick), Dermacentor variabilis, can transmit Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Tularemia, Ehrlichiosis and Tick Paralysis. This tick species has been found in high numbers in southern Maine but is also becoming established in northern counties as well. The Lone Star Tick, Amblyomma americanum, can transmit Ehrilichiosis, Babesiosis and a condition known as STARI (Southern Tick-associated Rash Illness).

Fleas (Ctenocephalides canis and Ctenocephalides felis) can be a menace any time of the year but are more prevalent in the warmer months. The adult flea has bristly hairs that allow it to cling to the animal. There they can lay up to 50 eggs a day and as many as 2000 in their lifetime. The eggs then fall off the animal and get into the carpet, the dog or cat’s bed, your bed and cracks in the floor. The eggs then hatch and the larvae move around in the environment eating skin cells and flea dirt shed from you and your pet. Flea dirt is actually dried blood that the flea excretes as waste. Fleas then spin a cocoon around themselves and the flea pupates inside. There they stay (for up to a year) until environmental conditions are right for them to take a blood meal. Fleas wait until they detect several things: the carbon dioxide from the exhaled breath of a pet or a human, foot traffic vibrations, or a rise in temperature. It is then that they hatch and re-infest the animals in the house. This begins the flea life cycle all over again. It is interesting to note that the adult fleas you actually SEE in your house represent only 5% of the total population that are there. The other 95% are the eggs, larvae and pupae that will be blood sucking adults soon.

Here at Dehler Animal Clinic we have several flea and tick control products to keep your animals safe.


Frontline is the number one veterinarian recommended flea and tick control topical. The active chemical in Frontline, Fipronil is very safe and well tolerated, and is very effective when used properly. Merial, the makers of Frontline will guarantee the product 100% when purchased through a licensed veterinarian. If you treat every animal in the house for three months consecutively and still have a flea problem, Merial will send Terminix to your house at no charge. Frontline is a topical treatment that does not absorb into the animals blood stream so it does not require a prescription. It is applied to the animal’s skin between the shoulders and disperses by the natural process of translocation to the oil glands in the skin. Because Frontline uses the skin’s natural oils to disperse the animal should not swim or bathe for 48 hours before or after application. Frontline is recommended for dogs and cats 8 weeks old and older.


Certifect is also made by Merial, the makers of Frontline. It is just as effective as Frontline at killing fleas and ticks, but is more effective against ticks; so our clients that live in heavily tick infested areas may want to try this product. Certifect contains the same active ingredients as Frontline but has an added ingredient, Amitraz. Amitraz makes the tick move around more so they contact more of the Fipronil and die faster, usually within 6 hours. Certifect is recommended for dogs and puppies that are 8 weeks of age or older. Since Amitraz is not safe for cats or kittens, any cats in the house should be kept away from the dog until the Certifect dries. Because Certifect uses the skin’s natural oils to disperse, the animal should not swim or bathe for 48 hours before or after application.


Dehler Animal Clinic carries Revolution for cats. The main ingredient, Selamectin, is effective against fleas, ear mites, heartworms and the intestinal parasites hookworm and roundworm. Revolution, made by Pfizer, is recommended for cats aged 8 weeks and older. This is also a topical treatment that is applied to the animal’s skin in the area of the base of the neck. However, because Revolution does go into the blood stream, your animal needs regular annual exams. Be sure to apply it high enough that the cat cannot turn its head to lick it off.


This is a fast acting chewable tablet made by Novartis that begins to kill fleas within 30 minutes of application and lasts for 24-48 hours. Capstar is useful as a “quick kill” solution for fleas but should be followed by a more long-lasting flea control product. Capstar is safe for dogs, cats, puppies and kittens 4 weeks of age and older.


This product, made by Elanco, contains Spinosad for killing fleas. It is a chewable tablet that begins killing fleas within 30 minutes and kills the flea before it is able to lay eggs, thus breaking the flea life cycle. This product should be given with food once a month and remains effective for 30 days. It is recommended for dogs and puppies 14 weeks of age and older. This product is labeled for patients that have flea allergy dermatitis.


1.Publication by Maine Medical Center Research Institute.

2.Center for Disease Control –

3.Certifect Publication by Merial