Parasites are one of the nastier parts of dog ownership that we may have to deal with at some point in our dogs’ lifetime. Unfortunately, these infections can cause issues from the mundane to the more serious with your pet. They can cause simple itching to more critical medical problems like infections and debilitating or fatal diseases.
Each parasite that can affect your dog tends to have its own symptoms, outcomes, and effects. They each infect in their own way and to their own extent. Some are more virile than others and can really throw your dog for a medical loop. This illness can be exacerbated by how each dog may react to that particular parasite. Some dogs may have hardier systems to take them on, whereas others struggle to overcome the infection. Some dogs may also react with hypersensitivity to the parasite as well where others will not. The effect the parasite has on your dog also depends on how much the pup is infected or infested. The more parasites that are in your dog, the more the dog’s body will feel the effects.
While most parasites that get into dogs don’t hold a serious threat for humans, some can be transmitted between species. Therefore, you want to make sure your pup has good vet care and their vet has input into how best to prevent, treat and control any parasites your dog might encounter or get. It's important not only for their health but for yours and other family members as well. Reducing both yours and your family’s exposure is key to keeping your canine companion and your family healthy.
Revolution, otherwise known as selamectin, is a parasiticide. In other words, it kills parasites. It is a monthly medication for your dog that can protect your pup and family from serious parasitic infestation. It's an easy medication to dose your pup with. It’s a topical treatment, meaning its applied to a certain spot of skin on your dogs’ body. You simply squeeze the small pipet that has the medicine in it onto their skin at the base of their neck. You use the whole tube and put it right in the middle of their shoulder blades on their skin. Make sure to part their hair to get to the skin so the medication doesn’t get lost in their fur.
Treatment from Revolution kills fleas, their eggs, American dog ticks, ear mites, scabies, mites that cause canine sarcoptic mange while also controlling tick invasions as well. Along with all these medically control factors, it also helps control heartworm and halts the spreading of parasitic worms such as tapeworms and hookworms. This is different than some other flea and tick meds that do not treat all these ailments with one medication.
Revolution is given in a monthly dose that will help prevent fleas, ticks and so much more. Each monthly dose will kill adult fleas and keep their eggs from hatching for up to 30 days. It is scientifically tested, FDA approved and is safe to use for puppies over 6 weeks of age. There are no complicated injections or pills that need to be hidden. It's safe to use by simply applying to the base of your dogs’ neck and throwing out the vial. It dries quickly, is non-greasy and is absorbed into the dog’s skin to then be sent throughout their body for full protection. Its quick-drying ability means it won’t rub off on you or anything else before it has time to get into your pups’ bloodstream. Your dog can even be bathed 2 hours after they have their dosage and it won't wash off.
Revolution protects your dog from more than just the standard parasitic infectors. It prevents and gets rid of intestinal parasites and ectoparasites (fleas and ticks) altogether. The great thing about this prescription medication is that while it covers fleas and ticks as we assume it would, it also covers a range of other threats to your dog’s health under the umbrella of the same dose. The importance of protecting your pet means you are protecting your household as well since there are parasites that don’t just affect dogs. Mites that cause sarcoptic mange, hookworms, tapeworms, and other doggy infectors can infect humans as well. Revolution works to stop the contamination by curing your pup so they can’t infect you, other dogs or themselves.
Fleas are one of the primary parasites that Revolution is known to combat with little trouble. These tiny parasites, Ctenocephalides felis, small, flat, wingless bugs who take nutrition from the blood of the body they inhabit. While they can bite humans, they really prefer animals like dogs. They love warm, humid areas to breed and survive and canine provide just that. An adult flea spends its whole life on a dog and that’s where you as an owner will notice them the most. You may see a flea itself, or flea dirt in your dog’s coat. You want to prevent the bugs for both you and your dog's benefit but also to stop others from being infected through transference within your home. The last thing guests need to take home with them is fleas.
You’ll know if your dog is flea-infested by certain signs. Some of those are:
These invasive bugs can also cause secondary bacterial infections and strong allergic reactions in some dogs. Flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) can happen and this can lead to a very problematic and uncomfortable inflammatory skin disease. The longer-term issue of a flea infestation can be anemia since these bugs feed on your dogs’ blood. When a dog has a large infestation, especially puppies, they can become very ill simply because they don’t have enough blood to support both themselves and a multitude of fleas. Fleas also carry other diseases that can threaten your pup such as tapeworms which can lead to similar issues of anemia and bug transference.
It is critical to understand that fleas on your dog are only part of the problem when it comes to addressing an infestation. For each flea on your dog, there can be hundreds of eggs, larvae, and pupae hiding in your home and on other pets. Fleas invade your carpets, bedding, pillows, soft furniture and more. They drop eggs into appropriate hatching spots and then become larvae. They move from larvae to pupa then into a full adult and start their feeding regimen. Fleas can breed over and over inside your home all year round with adult females laying up to 40-50 eggs per day unchecked. So, observe your dog thoroughly for the fleas and flea dirt and be ready to get rid of them if you think your dog is infested. Get rid of fleas on your dog with a flea comb and shampoo then apply Revolution to kill the remaining fleas and to stop their eggs from hatching. Revolution will also help with allergies related to the fleas.
After your dog is treated then you need to move on to cleaning your home. You will need to use items that will kill fleas and their eggs in your house. Foggers can help you rid a 2000 square foot home of fleas and eggs for up to 7 months. You can take care of your yard as well with a special spray. Once this is done, preventative maintenance starts for your dog. Use Revolution year-round to combat your dog being infested with parasites once again.
Mites are annoying parasites that can cause lots of aggravation and problems in dogs. Ear mites and Sarcoptes scabiei (the mite that causes mange) can be treated by Revolution with their one dose per month regimen. The medication stops the issue by halting the mite infestation quickly.
Sarcoptes scabiei (scabies) are particularly difficult to deal with as these mites burrow below your pups’ skin and lay their larvae. This becomes cyclical because once the eggs hatch, they reborrow and plant more eggs. This ramps up the infestation. While they start in one place and keep spreading all over the body. They pick sensitive areas where there is little hair such as your dogs’ tummy, bottom, and sides of the ear. The mites have a short life span of only 2-6 days, but they can do a lot of damage in that time. They can jump to other animals and people. Dogs who have these mites will itch and scratch in the sensitive places and get bumps like hives, swollen and sore skin, scabs and hair loss. They will be extremely uncomfortable. It's important to get this infection under control as it can lead to secondary bacterial and yeast infections.
Ear mites, Otodectes cynotis, are bugs that get into your dog’s ear canal and cause infection. These mites can move to other areas of the body and bother your dog there as well as causing secondary infections while they do it. Once these mites are in your pups’ ears, they cause an awful odor along with other symptoms:
These parasites are really contagious and can be spread easily from dog to dog simply by contact. While a human infestation is extremely rare, it has happened.
Heartworm, Dirofilaria immitis, is an infection that you often hear about in the vet’s office. It is one of the main reasons your dog should be having yearly check ups. These nasty parasites can have devastating effects on your pup. As the adult worm can live in or around your dogs’ heart and lungs. An infection can lead to heart and lung damage and most drastically, fatal heart failure. They are big worms and once grown, look like a long piece of spaghetti that is up to 12” long. A pup can have more than one of these worms present at a time. Dogs get these heartworms from mosquitoes. The cycle begins with a mosquito biting a dog that already has heartworm and flying to an uninfected dog and biting them. This then infects that dog and starts the cycle over again if it's not stopped.
While it's sometimes hard to know if your dog is infected with heartworm, there are some symptoms you may notice that will give you a heads up:
Vets suggest that as soon as dogs are six weeks old, they start to take heartworm preventative medicine. It can not only be fatal, but it is also costly and hard to treat.
Ticks - Dermacentor variabilis, especially the American dog tick, is prevalent throughout North America. They are problematic for dogs as they prefer them as their hosts over most other animals. This particular tick carries something called Rocky Mountain spotted fever that causes tick induced paralysis. This disease can be fatal if not treated. Keep your dog safe and clear of places that might harbor ticks. Wooded areas are prime breeding space for ticks and are an easy place for making transference of a tick from bush to fur is simple. Check your dog when they come in from outside by going through their coats to make sure no ticks are hiding. A quick brush will help as well.
Once the medicine is put on to the skin on the base of your dogs’ neck, it goes into their bloodstream quickly. When it enters the bloodstream, it gathers in your dogs’ blood and tissues to stop the heartworm from entering and progressing. Once it is in the blood, the medicine then moves out further to the skin where it will fight and repel against fleas and their eggs. This is also where it will combat ticks, mites, and bugs such as mosquitoes which can lead to heartworm infections. Revolution is a poison to the parasites and their carriers. When they try to bite or infect your dog, they eat the Revolution which in turn kills them.
Revolution is a reliable product that is approved by the FDA. They say it is safe for:
However, there are a few scenarios where you need to restrict Revolutions use in your dogs. Do not use it for dogs that are ill, weak or underweight. You can’t use it for puppies who are younger than 6 weeks old. You also need to be aware if the pup who is getting a dose of Revolution already has heartworms. Be mindful that you do not get the medication on yourself as it can bother your skin and eyes. Always wash up after applying to your dog keeping both you and them safe.
While it is rare that dogs experience side effects with Revolution, some dogs do. These side effects especially appear when a pup has been given more of the medicine than was prescribed. Reactions tend to happen more often in some specific breeds such as collies or other dogs that are designated as herders. Some of the negative reactions include:
While a prescription is required for your dog to get Revolution, there are various types available. Your vet will look at the weight and age of your dog to assess which one is best you can purchase:
Revolution Topical Solution for Puppy & Kitten, under 5 lbs, 3 treatments
Revolution Topical Solution for Dogs, 5.1-10 lbs
Advantage Yard & Premise Spray, 32-oz hose-end spray
Advantage Household Fogger, 3-pack
Revolution Topical Solution for Dogs, 40.1-85 lbs
Revolution Topical Solution for Dogs, 86-130 lbs