6 signs your cat has fleas – Fleas are something no cat parent wants to encounter, but they’re all too common among companion animals. Unfortunately, once fleas are in the house, they can affect everyone in the household – including people.
The following six signs of flea infestations are not always apparent, especially when they aren’t in abundance, but they are something cat and even pet owners can watch out for.
1. Scratching, licking and biting: Fleas set up residence in hard-to-reach places, says PetMD. The head, neck and tail of a cat or dog are common areas where flea infestations occur. An animal that is consistently picking at these areas may have fleas.
2. Restlessness: Fleas are uncomfortable and can upset pets. If your dog or cat is acting out of sorts, fleas could be to blame.
3. The presence of “flea dirt”: Black deposits within the fur near the skin are often flea droppings. If you’re unsure, drop a little into water and see if they turn it reddish-brown. If so, this is indicative of fleas.
4. Raised bumps or welts: Fleas can irritate the skin, causing raised welts on pets and people. People are often affected near the ankles when fleas jump from the carpet onto human skin.
5. Fur loss: A flea infestation can cause constant scratching and biting, which may eventually contribute to the loss of fur.
6. Pale gums: Pale gums are a sign of anemia and indicate that a pet has a severe flea infestation. The dog or cat simply cannot reproduce red blood cells as fast as they’re drained by voracious fleas.
Sometimes it’s possible to see fleas in action, but they tend to jump and scurry so fast that they can be hard to detect. Pet owners who suspect their pets are dealing with fleas infestations should consult a vet. He or she will likely recommend a flea shampoo and preventative treatments to stop future outbreaks.
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