The weather is getting warmer, and many of us are spending lots of quality time outside with our pets. But with the higher temperatures and increased humidity, the likelihood of your pet being exposed to fleas and ticks increases.
At this time of year, conditions are ideal for these nasty pests to survive and multiply. Bites from fleas and ticks are uncomfortable and irritating, and can also put your pet at risk of serious health problems.
Fleas can cause illnesses such as Flea allergy dermatitis (FAD), cat scratch disease and anemia. Ticks can also spread dangerous diseases like Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever – which can be fatal.
Fleas and ticks are a menace to both pets and people, so how can you protect your home and loved ones from these stubborn and dangerous pests?
Protecting Your Home from Fleas and Ticks
Your home is your castle, and the good news is there are steps you can take to protect it from fleas and ticks.
In the Garden
Be sure to keep grass mowed and shrubs trimmed back. Eliminate other obvious hiding places such as piles of wood or patches of tall weeds. Sprinkle food-grade Diatomaceous Earth in areas your pet frequents. Diatomaceous earth is a non-toxic powder made up of fossilized organisms that break apart flea eggs and kill adult fleas.
Around the House
Keeping things tidy around the house can go a long way in the fight against pests. Make sure to keep carpets and furnishings clean and vacuumed, and regularly wash bed linens and pet beds.
Checking for Fleas and Ticks
It's also important to check for fleas and ticks regularly - especially when returning from walks outside. Use a flea comb, and If you find fleas, comb and bathe your pet thoroughly. If you discover a tick on your pet, be very careful removing it. A specially designed tick-removal tool is the best option to prevent infection in you or your pet.
The Dangers of Chemical Flea and Tick Preventatives
There are lots of flea and tick treatments on the market today, but many are ineffective – or pose serious health risks to your pet.
Responsible pet owners should be particularly wary of using chemical preventatives; either year-round or seasonally.
Many vets recommend chemical preventatives as a solution to the pest problem, but chemical oral flea and tick preventatives and spot-on products can cause a range of health problems including skin irritation, vomiting and even seizures.
The best way to protect your pet against fleas and ticks is with an all-natural preventative. That's right – fight nature with nature!
Therapeutic Coconut Oil - a Safe and Natural Solution
100% natural, human-grade coconut oil acts as an effective flea and tick repellent. It's a safe and natural alternative to powerful chemicals that risk the health of your precious pets.
Chemical pest preventatives work by entering your pet's bloodstream, killing fleas and ticks on ingestion of your pet's blood. Therapeutic coconut oil is different. It repels and kills fleas and ticks on contact – eliminating harmful side effects.
Since therapeutic coconut oil is non-toxic, free of chemicals and soothing to your pet's skin, it's the perfect solution to the pest problem. It has been the traditional remedy for fleas, mites, (and even lice) in the Philippines for centuries.
So how does it work? When applied to the skin and coat, coconut oil coats the exoskeleton of any existing parasites, suffocating them and limiting their mobility. In addition, because of coconut oil’s anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties, it prevents bites from becoming infected and helps heal inflamed skin.
If you suspect that your pet has fleas, massage a generous amount of coconut oil onto the skin and hair of the animal, making sure to coat the skin well. Leave the oil on for at least 8 hours, then wash your pet with a natural, gentle shampoo.
When treating your pets, be sure to choose a therapeutic grade oil such as CocoTherapy coconut oil. Our oil is sourced from our USDA-certified organic family farm in the Philippines and made in our own facility. It’s high in lauric acid, and effective against stubborn pests.
You can also make an effective and safe pest repellent to apply before your pet goes outdoors. Simply mix a few drops of any one or two of the following flea-repelling oils, such as tea tree oil, neem oil, lavender, lemon, eucalyptus (radiata), peppermint, cedar (atlantica), or rosemary oils with coconut oil as a base.
To use as a pest repellent, cover your hands with a small amount of the coconut oil mixture, then massage into your pet's coat. Take care to work the oil down so it makes contact with the skin.
Make sure to apply the oil liberally on the foot pads, between the toes, around and inside the ears, armpits, and bellies. As a side benefit, your pet will have a shiny, moisturized skin and coat, as coconut oil helps with itchy, scaly skin and dry fur!
Please note that essential oils can be potentially toxic to cats. Check with your holistic vet when using essential oils on or around cats. In the case of cats with fleas or ticks, plain therapeutic virgin coconut oil high in lauric acid is sufficient to eliminate and prevent fleas, ticks and mites.
We hope you enjoyed today's post. Have you used CocoTherapy coconut oil as a natural pest repellent with your pets? Let us know in the comments!
For more information about CocoTherapy and our coconut oil, chips, and treats for pets, check out more of our blogs.
By Richard Rowlands