Where do fleas and ticks spend winter? I can tell you, on your dog if you are not using flea and tick prevention. Snow and cold are not proper flea and tick prevention. Here in Minnesota, it gets real cold and we have lots of snow. Ticks are rare to find, but fleas are around and proper flea control is very important for dogs and their families!
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Today, I’m going to tell you a story about why snow and cold are not proper flea and tick prevention. Ticks tend to be scarce around here in the winter as they do not like temperatures below 39 degrees. If they don’t have a place for a blood meal, they will find a place to kind of hibernate for the winter. Fleas are another story with their long flea life cycle!
Where Do Fleas And Ticks Spend Winter?
Fleas prepare for winter!
I met up with Sven and Lena, Swedish fleas, whose families immigrated to Minnesota around 150 years ago. They survived the Atlantic crossing, wagon trips from the East Coast to Minnesota, and the brutal Minnesota winters. Back then, there was no flea or tick prevention, giving their flea relatives free reign on animals and humans. These days, life is not as simple for fleas and ticks with great products like Bravecto® (Fluralaner).
Nevertheless, fleas are determined. When summer draws to a close, and the temperatures start to fall, fleas start planning for winter. Unlike human snowbirds who pack up and take a car or plane to a warm climate, fleas have to stay here. They pack their microscopically small suitcases and start the search for unprotected animals. Because many humans wrongly assume the end of summer is the end of fleas and ticks, finding a dog to hitch a ride on becomes fairly easy.
Fleas start spending the winter on your dog!
Once Sven and Lena hitch a ride on an unsuspecting dog, they start to lay eggs. The dog they told us about is named Nelson. Nelson is an active dog who lives inside, but is also out in his yard, goes for walks, and attends dog school. Without knowing Sven and Lena have buried themselves in his fur, Nelson goes into his house and takes a nap on the couch. Naturally, Nelson’s home is toasty warm. For Sven and Lena it is a feeling like a snowbird in Florida! They hop off, and lay even more eggs in the couch and around the house.
Fleas multiply even in the winter!
A couple days later, Nelson goes to dog school. Before getting started with the lesson, he does a big shake off, and guess what? Flea eggs fly off of him and land on the floor, and some land on the other dogs standing near him. Luckily, Juliet is using flea and tick prevention year round, but poor Harvey is not. Now Harvey is also carrying flea eggs from Sven and Lena. As long as the eggs are kept warm they will eventually hatch and multiply. Remember, as an example, from one of my previous posts on fleas, if you see 10 or so fleas, there are most likely 40 or more hiding that you don’t see! If you have 40 hidden fleas, there are roughly 80 pupae (cocoons), 280 larvae, and 400 flea eggs hiding in your carpet, bedding, couches, and even in the floor boards!
Are fleas outside in the winter?
Fleas are not hanging out on the snow, in tall grass, or other places you find them in the warmer months, but they are outside as well. Fleas and ticks will find sheltered grass and leaf spots which become covered in snow, creating a warm shelter for them. Eskimos live in igloos, and they are warm because snow insulates! Fleas and ticks also survive on wild animals. If your dog comes into contact with wild animals, it is another opportunity for fleas to get a better life by living on your dog!
How can I best prevent fleas and ticks in the cold and snow?
BRAVECTO makes year round flea and tick protection a snap! Not only do you need just four fast acting doses a year, each dose provides up to twelve week protection. Reminders abound as well, for your calendar, or smart phone reminder app! BRAVECTO is fast acting! If your dog has fleas, a dose of BRAVECTO will start killing fleas within 2 hours and will kill 100% of the fleas within 12 hours! The flea lifecycle can last for several months, making it important for your dog to continue consistently with flea prevention!
Where do fleas and ticks spend winter? Hopefully not on your dog! We are in the midst of the holiday season, keep your family, friends, other pets, and home safe and flea and tick free by using BRAVECTO all year round! Talk to your veterinarian about what is right for your dog! Because it is FDA approved, BRAVECTO is only available from your veterinarian or veterinary clinic. Visit Merck® on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on the latest BRAVECTO news!
*BRAVECTO kills fleas, prevents flea infestations, and kills ticks (black-legged tick, American dog tick, and brown dog tick) for 12 weeks. BRAVECTO also kills lone star ticks for 8 weeks.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION: The most common adverse reactions recorded in clinical trials were vomiting, decreased appetite, diarrhea, lethargy, polydipsia, and flatulence. BRAVECTO has not been shown to be effective for 12 weeks’ duration in puppies less than 6 months of age. BRAVECTO is not effective against lone star ticks beyond 8 weeks after dosing.
Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information published. However, it remains the responsibility of the readers to familiarize themselves with the product information contained on the USA product label or package. More product information is available here: https://intervetus.naccvp.com/product/view/1047512?e=d97b22ed63e734e84c1a5910a9c8f531z1688
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of BRAVECTO®. The opinions and text are all mine.
I’v e read about the hibernation of fleas as we had the flea circus here… I always think they maybe still lure somewhere in the house….I’m a flea-o-maniac :o)
Thankfully, we have never had fleas.
2 Brown Dawgs says
We are lucky because we don’t really have to worry about ticks in winter. Brown dawgs are not too susceptible to fleas. I think it is the natural oil in their coats. I think if we lived further south we would definitely use tick control all year long.
We haven’t seen ticks here, but we could see how being around other dogs, fleas could happen in the winter.
When I first got Barley (it was January), I asked if I needed to use prevention year round and was told that it probably wasn’t necessary in our area in the winter. Then Barley got Lyme disease, so we use it year-round regardless of whether it’s below freezing or not.
These days you really never know, and fleas can be on another dog that has been carrying the eggs around. We wish we didn’t need to, but year-round is the safest.
Frankie and Ernie says
WE hate blood sucking Fleas and Ticks… they are ALMOST as sneaky as Snow Freaks.
They are so much worse than any snow freaks!
Jan K says
That’s another reason to be grateful for our snow cover…at least we don’t have to worry about ticks now. But I did not know that about fleas in the winter.
It is still possible for those fleas to survive if they find a warm spot. We hadn’t thought about that either.
Dang, those pesky boogers just won’t quit!
They want to snack on pets.
M. K. Clinton says
Sven and Lena sound like real trouble makers. I am glad that you are protected from such scoundrels. ♥
They are well known as troublemakers in these parts!
Sand Spring Chesapeakes says
Great post! Flea’s and ticks are around in the winter so still have to be careful.
Everyone thinks cold kills them, not true.