Pets are a part of the family, and they rely on us for protection. Using the right pesticides in the right way (by following label directions) helps control insects and parasites that can carry and transmit diseases to your pets. For example, mosquitoes can transmit heartworm disease, which can lead to serious health problems if undetected in dogs. Follow all label directions and making sure pesticides are stored properly and out of pets’ reach to keep the whole family safe.
Fleas and ticks are the most common pests that pose a threat to pets because their bites cause severe itching and skin irritations and also spread disease. Flea and tick prevention products, including topical treatments and collars, are insecticides designed to prevent pets from being bitten by these tiny insects.
Take the following steps to keep your pets flea- and tick-free:
- Check for ticks daily and remove them as soon as possible.
- Ask your veterinarian for advice about how often and how long to use flea and tick products in your area. In many climates, the biting bugs thrive all year.
- Carefully read and follow all label directions when applying flea and tick control products. Misuse can lead to ineffectiveness, illness, or even death.
- Only use products labeled specifically for dogs, cats, or whatever animal you are treating. If you are uncertain whether the product you have is safe for your pet, contact your veterinarian.
When using pesticides to help control flea and tick populations in your yard or home, keep pets safe by following these precautions:
- Read and follow all directions when treating your yard, yourself, or consider hiring a professional to treat your home and yard.
- Remove or turn over and empty feeding bowls, water dishes and bird baths before you or a professional applies pesticides.
- Apply pesticides when pets are not in the yard or around the perimeter of your home. Follow the restricted-entry interval (REI) as directed on the label to determine when to let your pets back in the treated area.
- Store all lawn care and gardening products properly and out of pets’ reach after use.