June 2017: Nobody Wants a Flea Circus

Best June weather here in OC in 8 years! Happy June to all my friends in the big OC!!!

We know as Southern Californians how much we love our weather! That’s why we brave all the traffic and pay so much for the privilege of living here!
But these past 30 days I am reminded about how lucky we are to live here-where cool breezes, hazy sunshine, and beautiful purple, white and green plants everywhere make us calm and peaceful, and happy to be alive.
As we move into the lazy and simpler days of summer I want to remind everyone how important it is be sure we have stocked up on the following summer safety items for us canines:

  • 1. Flea, tick, heartworm protection (we are out and about and exposed to all kinds of insects and bugs). See our Vets recommendations for a flea free summer in the newsletter articles in my blog.
  • 2. Be mindful of us dogs on those long walks/runs in the sun. If we have light coats and short fur or heavy coats keep us in mind for sunburn and heat stroke. Water, rest, shade are our best friends!
  • 3. Pavement can be hot for our feet! Try to walk us on dirt paths, avoid asphalt that soaks up heat.
  • 4. If we travel with you by car make sure you cart along water, an extra leash, and a list of emergency vet care practices on your travel path. Please take the time to stop and give us a chance to eliminate and stretch our legs!
  • 5. Please don’t leave us in the warm car unattended. There are so many places where you can take us now! When you can’t take us along bring us in to day board at IVS. We are open from 7:00am and close as late as 8:00pm. We are grateful for your trust for those vacation boarding stays. We do boarding well!
  • 6. Keep our coats clean and neat! At IVS we are EXPERTS at pet bathing and boarding! Check out me getting a bath. I often get ‘itchy skin’ this time of year. Regular baths help my sensitive skin stay itch free!!

Mostly-I send you all my love and kisses and best wishes to enjoy this EXTRORDINARILY beautiful summer weather we are having!
Love and kisses from me, Lizzie!!!


It is important to understand the life cycle of the flea in order to prevent or eliminate fleas from your home and pets. There are 4 stages in the life cycle and they all play a vital role in the development.
Adult female fleas suck a small amount of blood from your pet and lay eggs. EACH female can lay up to 40 eggs a day. The eggs can take up to 2 weeks to mature and hatch. These eggs are smaller than sand and usually are not detected with the naked eye.
Larvae come from eggs. They eat flea poop made of digested blood left behind by the adults. They take several weeks to develop. Larvae make cocoons.
Egon is giving her Mom a high-five after taking her heartworm prevention!

The cocoon protects the pupae during its final development to become an adult over the next few days to weeks. It can remain in the cocoon for years if the environment is not ideal. The sticky protective coating allows for it to hide out in carpets, bedding & furniture.
The adult emerges from the cocoon. It is triggered by vibrations, changes in carbon dioxide, and body heat. This is how the adult knows it is time to feed on you and your pet. Yes, they can feed on you too! Adults begin feeding within hours. Breeding and egg laying takes just a few days after feeding. They can hang out on your pet for several months.
**Keep in mind adult fleas make up less than 5% of the total population. This means just because you don’t see fleas doesn’t mean they aren’t there causing your pet to itch. Indoor only pets are not immune. Fleas like all neighborhoods equally. What flea wouldn’t want to live in Orange County? Flea control is made as a PREVENTATIVE so don’t wait until you see them scratching or find adult fleas. It is already too late. The life cycle has already begun!



What types of Flea preventatives are available?

Today there is a very large market of Flea preventatives available to pet owners – it can be very overwhelming! Here’s a breakdown – there are 3 main types that you can get; Oral, Topical and Flea collars.
Oral Flea preventatives normally come in a flavored tablet, so it’s more appealing to the pet, and will even be considered a treat. Oral preventatives work systemically and are absorbed into the blood stream after ingested. The flea needs to have a “blood meal” in order for the medication to be distributed to the flea.
Topical Flea preventatives are applied to the skin of the upper back. Topical preventative treatments are absorbed into the pores and spread throughout the skin acting like a shield. Once the flea jumps onto the pet, the flea will groom itself, and the medication will be ingested and the flea will die.
Finally, Flea Collars, which have product on them that transfers from the collar to the pet. There is speculation on how effective Flea Collars are because the flea collar is not always resting on the pet’s skin; and, if the ingredients in the collar provide coverage to the whole body or just the neck where the collar is resting.
At IVS we recommend an Oral or Topical Flea Preventative. Schedule your appointment today to get a recommendation of the best fit for your pet and lifestyle.
How long does it last?
Most Flea Preventatives take 24 hours to be at full efficacy and will last 4 weeks like Revolution, Trifexis, Frontline, etc. Companies have also been recently coming up with Flea Preventatives that last longer like Bravecto, which lasts 3 months. There is an oral Flea medication that works for 24 hours, which is mainly used when the pet currently has Fleas called Capstar. Capstar takes 30 minutes to take affect and will kill all the fleas that are on the pet within a 24hour period. Most Veterinarians will give a Capstar at the same time the Flea Prevention is applied or given, so that by the time the Flea preventative kicks in the pet will not have any fleas on them. A lot of flea preventions also serve as tick, heartworm or a parasite preventative as well.
Can I give my cat, my dog’s flea medication?
That would be a big no. Even if your cat and your dog weigh the same, your dog’s flea medication has some ingredients in it that cats are extremely sensitive to. If cats are given a dog’s flea medication or even a cheap flea medication from the grocery store or pet store they may develop seizures.
At IVS we recommend an Oral or Topical Flea Preventative. Schedule your appointment today to get a recommendation of the best fit for your pet and lifestyle. Consult with your Veterinarian before starting any medication, even if it’s over-the-counter.



Did you know one of the best ways to spot fleas is to get your pet wet? When your pet comes in for a bath or a groom we always pay close attention to their skin and coat. Fleas love to hide in the nooks and crannies of your pet. They can be found in places that aren’t always visible to the naked eye, especially when there’s a lot of fur involved! Our flea and tick shampoo is gentle on your pet’s skin and starts to work immediately. It contains soothing ingredients like aloe and coconut extract as well as a built-in conditioner to keep your pet looking and feeling great!
Other signs of fleas: “flea dirt,” unusual or excessive scratching or chewing at their fur, unusual red patches of skin, hair loss or pale gums.
While flea and tick shampoo is great as a quick fix, we always recommend a more permanent solution such as fleas and tick preventative to keep your pet happy, healthy, and flea free and regular bathing and grooming throughout the year.

Have you heard? Have you seen? IVS has a new website design!

Browse our site and roam around today!

Superstar of the Month: London

| 6443 Oak Canyon | Irvine, CA 92618 | Phone: 949-724-7740
The ears, those mesmerizing eyes, and that gorgeous coat make London a beautiful girl. She is a 2 year old, spayed female, tan Pit Bull Terrier mix. A good listener who’s ready to learn, London is also a bit of a free spirit who likes to take the lead when possible. She is looking for a companion who will be her partner in adventure, willing to work together towards her new happily ever after story.

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