Today’s products used as flea treatment for cats, like Advantage, Frontline and Program, have pretty much replaced many of the previously popular products. However they are still produced in the shape of shampoos, sprays and powders for treatment and prevention of fleas. New flea products are far more effective and they are also safer than conventional insecticides. As an added bonus, they are easier to manage.
The flea treatment product called Program was the very first of its kind, and today it’s still one of (if not the most) popular product used in the fight against fleas. Program is available in pill form or liquid and the cat must eat it every month together with a meal. It’s also available for injection, which only needs to be given in intervals of six months.
There’s an active ingredient in this flea treatment type for cats that absorbs into the pet’s skin, which is why fleas need to bite for Program to even work. By preventing flea eggs from evolving and hatching, it quickly leads to decreased numbers of fleas. The effect only targets the outer shell of the fleas, which is why it’s completely harmless to animals. As adult fleas won’t be affected, it may take up to 30 or even 60 days or longer before adult fleas on cats die of natural causes and the itching and pain subsides. Remember to treat all the animals in your home with Program or you’ll never get rid of the little monsters.
This well known Advantage product comes in liquid form and is used once a month. This type of flea treatment for cats kill fleas through direct contact. After application, you can expect that 98 to 100 percent of the adult fleas die within 12 hours.
The goal is to get rid of all new fleas on the cat before they have a chance to lay eggs. This breaks the flea life cycle, which eventually leads to complete eradication of all fleas in the area. One of the benefits of Advantage is that it’s not absorbed into the cat’s system and therefore it’s not toxic. Humans don’t absorb this flea treatment type for cats by petting them either. Another advantage of this product is that it can be applied to kittens at an age of 8 weeks. Don’t believe in everything you read on the internet though, always read the instructions on the package.
Another flea treatment solution for cats is called Frontline and Frontline Spray, and it kills fleas within 24 to 48 hours after direct contact. Fleas don’t have to bite the cat in order for this to work. Frontline is a liquid that comes in small pipes and must be applied in the same way as Advantage.
Frontline Plus takes care of the adult fleas, flea eggs and larvae, and it also works against some types of lice. Kittens at 8 weeks or older can use Frontline Plus.
Revolution as flea treatment for cats
Last but not least, we have Revolution which prevents heartworm. It comes in a liquid form and is applied once a month. This kind of flea treatment for cats is applied to the neck between the shoulder blades, in the same way as Advantage. It also acts against adult fleas and prevent flea eggs from hatching. In addition, it’s used against ear mites, hookworms, roundworms and some ticks.
2015 update: Vets no longer recommend using Revolution – there are simply better alternatives now.
Got fleas? Find out which products work in 2019, with my updated flea control product comparison chart.