Many people use flea pills as an alternative to other flea prevention products, like flea drops or flea collars. As with most other products used for flea control, there are several types of pills that have different purposes. Some flea pills only kill the adult fleas and some hits the fleas on every stage in their life cycle. There are also different types of flea pills for dogs and cats that are given either monthly or daily. Most of the pills for dogs are dangerous for cats, so be sure you get the correct product for your pet.
Benefits of using oral flea control
If you choose to use flea pills or not is entirely up to you. I myself like to use flea drops on my dogs, but some people consider flea pills a safer way to go because they leave no residue on the skin. This is just speculation though and why should something that goes inside your pet’s body be any safer than something that is applied to the skin. I believe any of these solutions are fine and gets the job done without complications, as long as you follow the instructions given on the box of the specific product.
Get rid of eggs, larvae and adult fleas
I recommend that you get flea pills that treat and prevent fleas on every stage, including eggs, larvae and adult fleas. One female flea produces thirty or more eggs a day, so even if you kill all the adult fleas, you are still left with lots of eggs that are just waiting to hatch.
Compare flea products to each other and find the ones that are best suited for your pet. As with medication for humans, some might not work on your pet even though they work on others.
Also, it’s better to start with smaller amounts and see if they work, as you have to remember that you are dealing with medicine designed to kill small organisms, and some pets may get allergic reactions to different kinds of flea control products.
How do flea pills work?
First you have to find a way to make your pet eat the flea pills. The easiest way to do this is by hiding the pills inside food you know it really enjoys. When your pet eats the pill, the active ingredient enters the bloodstream. Then, a hungry flea comes along and takes a bite of your pet and that’s the end of it.
However, there are some differences in how flea pills work. Some pills kill adult fleas and some prevent larvae from evolving. You should go after pills that do both. What’s the point in killing all living fleas if new ones return shortly after, right?
When to administer oral flea control
You have to decide whether you want to give your dog or cat daily or monthly flea pills. Usually the monthly pills are meant to keep the larvae and eggs from developing into adult fleas. This is great for preventing fleas, but if your pet already has them, you want to get them off as fast as possible.
This is where the daily pills excel, killing every living adult flea within a day or so. This pill combined with general flea control in your home could be enough to get rid of your flea problem if your pet spends all its time indoors. But if this was the case, you probably wouldn’t have a flea problem in the first place.
So if you want to prevent fleas with flea pills, I recommend you use the monthly pills for longer term use. It’s easier to administer and the total protection level is much higher than with a daily pill.
Repeat every month or two
Some people combine the two types of pills when they find living adult fleas on their pets. This way, they kill the existing adult fleas with the daily pill and prevent new ones from hatching with the monthly pill. When all the fleas are gone, they skip the daily flea pills and continue with the monthly pill. Talk to your vet first and make sure the pills can be combined. Also, remember the general flea prevention tips like vacuuming often and checking your animals for fleas with a flea comb.
5 reasons why you should use flea pills
- Flea pills safely and effectively kills existing fleas and parasites in 30 minutes and prevents new ones.
- Long lasting protection for up to 30 days or more.
- Kills fleas on contact and prevents them from laying eggs.
- Convenient, chewable form and flavors.
- Prevents heartworms, roundworms, whipworms and ear mites as well.
Popular oral flea control products
Here are a few products that people are generally having good results with:
Capstar flea pills
Capstar makes flea pills for dogs and cats. The Novartis flea pill is applicable to both – you can use the same product for cats and dogs. Thousands of happy pet owners have seen results in 4 hours for dogs and in less than 6 hours for cats. The fleas literally drop off in hours. Another benefit of Capstar flea pills is that you can easily hide it in the food or simply drop it in the pet’s mouth.
Disadvantages: Capstar has been known to make some cats sick and cause symptoms like hyperventilation, lethargy, disorientation and vomiting. However, these are a rare occurrence. Please talk to your vet prior to use. You could also divide the dose; instead of the entire tablet, crush and give only half, but this decreases the overall effectiveness.
Comfortis flea pills
Comfortis (spinosad) flea pills for dogs and cats work in literally 30 minutes and fleas start dropping off in this short period of time. The medicine is only available through the vets prescription. You need to administer Comfortis flea pills monthly. Many pet parents believe that this is one of the best flea pills for dogs and cats.
The 3 month (12 weeks) flea pill
Bravecto flea pills for dogs and cats is a relatively new product. It is the only pill that works for 12 weeks, which means after a single dose, your pet will be safe from fleas and ticks for 3 months. Unfortunately this is not available over the counter, so you have to talk to your vet about that first.
I hope you found this guide helpful. If you are ready to try out flea pills, you can get them on Amazon.