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Treat the Outdoor Environment

Treat dog houses, kennels by cleaning them out thoroughly and/or washing bedding material. Treat dog house, kennels and yard areas with an insecticide containing an insect growth regulator, such as pyriproxyfen.  This growth regulator is more photostable than methoprene (Precor) and lasts longer in outdoor environments. Pyriproxyfen is sold under the trade name Archer or Nylar.
In the cold winter months in Nebraska, it is not necessary to treat the outdoor environment because fleas are not active at cold temperatures.

Summary

There are more effective approaches to flea control than ever before.  Flea control strategies have recently focused on treating the animal to prevent a serious flea infestations inside the home.  These preventative treatments appear to be quite effective, but most are only available by prescription from a veterinarian. The type of preventative treatment that you choose depends on your specific pet situation, whether your pet lives inside or outside, in a kennel, how many pets you have, whether your pet is allergic to flea bites, whether your animal comes in frequent contact with other untreated animals and other considerations.

If you choose not to use a preventative approach, there are many options to control a flea infestations.  Controls should include treating the animal for adult fleas, the home, and outdoor environment, especially if the animal spends significant time outside. (updated April 23, 2001)

Flea control is difficult because effective treatment includes treating the animal, the house and the outdoor environment.  However there are new products on the market that make flea control safer and more effective than ever before.

Imidacloprid/Advantage™ (Bayer).  The active ingredient in this product kills adult fleas on contact before they can lay eggs.  Advantage™ is applied to the skin over the back where it diffuses through the skin over the rest of the body.  The treatment works quickly; 98-100% of adult fleas are killed within 24 hours after application. A single dose lasts four weeks on dogs and up to four weeks on cats.  To prevent fleas, his product should be applied monthly. Because Advantage™ is not systemically absorbed, the product is considered to be very safe. Disadvantages: the skin my become quite greasy at the site of application and remain greasy for a few days.