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Old 02-26-2005, 12:21 AM
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declansmom declansmom is offline
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Unhappy How to clean up sheltie with fleas?

Hi all,
New member here! I have a 6 year old male sheltie, who I just discovered last night has a bad case of fleas! I usually give him Frontline in the summer, but not after November. Well, we are in Seattle, and it has been very warm here recently, so perhaps that is to blame.

I was very busy the last two weeks and didn't do much grooming of him. When I started combing him last night, I noticed white flaky stuff sticking to his hairs, which I quickly realized was not dandruff. Ewww... I parted his hair, and looked at his undercoat and skin, and he seems to have little white specs all over. My poor baby!

I went to the vet this morning, picked up some Frontline, and put it on his shoulders. They told me to wait three days before washing him, but they were busy and didn't have time to tell me much else. I picked up a flea comb this afternoon and tried combing the fleas and what might be flea eggs out of him, but it seems to be a hopeless task. He has the typical thick sheltie winter coat, and they're all over in the inner fuzz. If I just run the flea comb through his outer coat, it doesn't catch much. However, if I push aside the outer coat & pull the comb through the fuzzy inner coat by the skin, it gets loads of white stuff (fleas? flea eggs? both?) on it. He's a teensy guy, but in an hour, I barely managed to make a small dent in it.

Although he's usually very good about grooming, he started growling and really barking at me when I got down to the skin & tried combing out the fleas. When I told him "no" he shushed for a few minutes, but I got the feeling he wasn't too happy about the combing. I suppose his skin might be irritated from flea bites- should I wait a day or two to try combing them out again? I'm not sure how to tell if that was really hurting him or if he's being a punk (he's always been fun to train because he has such an incredibly dominant personality).

I tossed out his bedding in his crate, and right now he's sleeping in it on an old quilt that I found. I would love any advice on how to clean him up! I've read up a lot on how to clean up my sofa and carpet, but can't find much advice on how to best clean doggie. I am going to call my aunt in the morning (she used to be a Sheltie breeder), but it's too late to call tonight.
Help help please!
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Old 02-26-2005, 01:32 PM
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Gustav Gustav is offline
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I would wait until the frontline has done it's stuff, then I would cover him in human hair conditioner and used the flea comb to comb through his hair. The fleas get caught up in the conditioner and you can get them out easier, plus the hair is easier to get through with the comb. Then just rinse him off!
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Old 02-26-2005, 11:03 PM
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declansmom declansmom is offline
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We're waiting to try the flea comb again... in the meantime, I'm vacuuming like crazy & tossed out all the pillows here and took all the quilts and blankets to the dry cleaners. In fact, I've done nothing but clean since last night. So much trouble for such a small furry guy!
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Old 02-27-2005, 02:06 PM
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Maybe if you take him to the groomer and get his hair shaved a little shorter it will really help you combing through the hair and it will hurt less.
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Old 02-27-2005, 06:42 PM
Brattina88 Brattina88 is offline
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here's a cool trick that I've aways done and its always worked for me.

get a shallow bowl and fill it with soapy hot water or rubbing alcohol. then put it in the middle of the floor in a room you suspect to be full of fleas and point a lamp on it. the fleas jump toward the light becuase of the heat and land in the soapy water and drown or get poisened or something idunno. I usually do this and then leave the room empty all night (while I sleep) and when I wake in the morning there will be lots of those lil buggers dead in the bowl
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Old 02-28-2005, 12:20 AM
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That's a great trick, Brattina. One of the 'old timers' around here told me about that and it works like a charm. The reason for the soap in the water - and it only takes a drop or two of liquid soap - is to break the surface tension of the water so the fleas will sink and drown instead of being able to bounce off the surface tension.

And best of all, it won't make you ill like the bombs and chemicals do.
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Old 02-28-2005, 10:50 AM
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That is a great tip!! A bit like beer traps for slugs and snails!
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Old 02-28-2005, 08:24 PM
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declansmom declansmom is offline
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I tried the light/soapy water thing in the living room, and it caught nothing. Then today I stopped off at the vet to pick something up for my friend's dog, and I was talking to the nurse. She had a look at him, and said she thought it wasn't fleas, but maybe a skin condition. So we have an appointment with the Vet tomorrow morning, and we'll see what he has to say.
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Old 02-28-2005, 08:29 PM
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declansmom declansmom is offline
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And thank you thank you for all the advice here!
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Old 03-01-2005, 02:18 PM
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declansmom declansmom is offline
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Please tell me there's a "least likely to know what a flea infestation looks like award"
Took puppy to the vet... and he has crusty dandruff. The white stuff coming off in his coat is all dead skin, so he just needs dandruff shampoo. I feel so silly right now, the vet looked at it & said it was just dandruff bits coming off his skin. So now we have to clear that up, but it's not that serious. Yay.
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