My 5 Favorite Flea Preventions (For Cats)

Hi Y’all! Last weekend, I confessed my feline flea prevention faux pas. On Thursday, we talked about my 5 favorite flea preventions for dogs. Today, we’re going to give the cat people some love. Flea prevention is just as important for cats (even if they are indoor only) as it is for dogs. Cats often have fleas with few symptoms or signs- they are fastidious groomers and an owner may see their cat itch and be unsure why.  However, many flea products available on the market can be harmful or deadly to cats, and so it is important to know which products are best for your kitty.

Although this article will focus mainly on flea products, many of the products I list below are also heartworm preventatives. Heartworm disease in cats results in respiratory distress and can even be fatal. Your cat won’t need a heartworm test to get started on heartworm prevention, but it must be purchased from a vet or with a veterinarian’s prescription, so talk to your vet today about getting on flea and heartworm prevention.

Disclaimer: I have not been sponsored or paid to write about these products by anyone. These opinions are my own and are based of 2 years of experience as a veterinarian and a combined total of nearly 10 years of working in the veterinary medical field. My opinions do not necessarily represent the views of my employer or of the veterinary medical profession as a whole. To ensure complete transparency, products listed below that are followed by a star are sold in the veterinary practice where I work. Products that are italicized have been given to me as free samples by company representatives.

Please note that I only recommend products that are safe and effective. I would never recommend anything that I didn’t feel comfortable using on my own pets.

Now, without further ado, here are my 5 Favorite Flea Preventions For Cats

  1. Revolution* 
    Revolution is a very safe, gentle, and effective flea and heartworm preventative. It is applied topically on the back of the neck and lasts for a month. It also protects against ear mites, roundworms, and hookworms. I use this product frequently on my two cats. This is also the product I use on many small mammal species, such as ferrets, guinea pigs, and rabbits (although this is considered “off label” use).
  2. Advantage Multi
    This product is also a topical flea and heartworm prevention that protects against ear mites, roundworms, and hookworms. The biggest difference between this product and revolution is that Advantage Multi has been tested and is labeled for use on ferrets. This product is only available through your vet, but another product marketed by Bayer (and available over the counter) is Advantage II, which is essentially Advantage Multi without the heartworm and intestinal parasite component.
  3. Bravecto for Cats*
    This is one of the newer products on the market, and it is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Like the others, It is a topical that is applied to the back- but it only has to be applied every three months. The only downside is that you must apply a larger volume of product compared to Advantage or revolution, and the solution is somewhat greasy until it dries. It protects against fleas and ticks, but does not protect against heartworms or intestinal parasites. I recommend using a monthly oral heartworm prevention, such as Heartgard, if you’re using this product.
  4. Comfortis*
    Comfortis is a prescription product that is also available for dogs. We didn’t talk about it for dogs as I prefer Trifexis for dogs, which is essentially comfortis plus heartworm prevention. There isn’t a trifexis for cats, unfortunately, so you should pair comfortis with a monthly heartworm prevention. It is a tablet you must give once monthly, by mouth. The biggest downside is that this tablet is somewhat large, and can be difficult to give to cats as they can be significantly harder to give medicines to than dogs.
  5. Seresto
    Seresto for cats is an over-the-counter collar that prevents fleas and ticks for 8 months. I really like this product. It is very safe, effective, and has a safety release mechanism in case you cat gets caught on something. I don’t recommend any other type of flea collar for cats- seresto is different from other collars because it is safe and effective, isn’t greasy or smelly, and doesn’t contain chemicals that are highly toxic to cats.

Question for readers: Are you guilty on skimping on your cat’s monthly flea and heartworm prevention? Have you ever had a good or bad experience with a product? Share below!

If you liked this post, please comment, subscribe, or share to help us reach more pet owners! Don’t forget to stop by on Thursday, where we will break down my 5 LEAST Favorite Flea Preventative for Dogs and Cats.

P.S. Happy Easter!

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Photo cred for Easter Bunny and Orange Cat Picture: Pexels.com

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“Help! My Cat is Peeing Everywhere!” What to Do if Your Cat isn’t Using Their Litter Box

Did you know that inappropriate urination is one of the leading reasons why owners leave their cats at shelters?

Sometimes the symptoms happen gradually, and sometimes all at once. Maybe fluffy was peeing in the bathtub for a while, and that was tolerable, but now she’s started peeing in the clothes hamper, and your spouse is ready to kill both of you. Other times, the cat is meowing loudly inside the litter box, and then he goes and squats in a corner instead. No matter how it presents, it is important to recognize this could be more than your cat just trying to spite you. In fact, he or she may need your help!

Before we go any further: If you have a male cat that is straining to urinate, and is producing little to nothing, take him to the vet immediately. He could have a urinary blockage, which can be fatal if not rapidly treated in male cats.

Behavioral and medical problems can cause your cat to avoid his litter box. These causes are often closely related. Behavioral stress can lead to a medical condition known as FIC (feline idiopathic cystitis) and sometimes called FLUTD (feline lower urinary tract disease). The exact pathway of this disease is unknown, but it is believed that the behavioral stimuli cause inflammation of the lower urinary tract, leading to the clinical signs that you are seeing at home.

Medical causes also include serious organ or metabolic diseases such as diabetes, kidney disease, or hyperthyroidism, which can cause cats to drink and urinate excessively. Less serious causes include a urinary tract infection or bladder stones/ urinary crystals, which can be very irritating to the inner lining of the bladder and tract. These medical conditions can be diagnosed easily by your veterinarian through a urine analysis, some bloodwork, and imaging to look at the bladder.

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Once you’ve visited your veterinarian and your pet has the “all clear,” here are some things you can do at home to help:

  1. Make sure you have the right number of litter boxes

    The “magic number” of litter boxes given by veterinary behaviorists is “N+1,” where N equals the number of cats in the household. For example, if I have one cat, I need two litter boxes. If I have two cats, I need three litter boxes (and so on). It is also important to mention that, regardless of the number of cats in the household, you should at least have 1 box on every floor of your house. These boxes should be easily accessible and meet the criteria listed below.

  2. Make sure you’re using the right type of litter boxes and cat litter

    Cats prefer clumping clay litter, and tend to use it more readily. It is recommended that you scoop the litter box once daily. If your cat has clumping litter and is not using it, I recommend using Dr. Elsie’s Cat Attract Litter, which worked miracles for a cat that I had with FLUTD. Cats prefer large boxes that are easily accessed and do not have a lid, which may trap odors inside the box. A kiddie pool would be the perfect box, but realistically this isn’t possible for most pet owners. Instead, look for a big, wide, simple box. Fill it with at least 2 inches deep of cat litter, and place it in ideal locations. Viola! You may be surprised at what a difference this makes.

  3. Provide environmental enrichment

    Boredom has been associated with FLUTD/FIC. Make sure your cat has plenty of things to occupy his highly intelligent mind. Play with him a couple of times a day, get him a cat tree, let him look out of some windows or walk him outside on a leash. This will lower his stress, which can reduce the signs and reoccurrence of FIC.

  4. Use pheromone diffusers

    This is especially helpful when aggression between multiple cats may be playing a role. There are several pheromone diffusers, sprays, and collars that can help cats relax. My preferred brand is Feliway. Use them in rooms where the accidents usually happen, or in areas where there is a litter box.

  5. Change your pet’s diet

    Most vets will recommend this the first time they see your cat for urinary tract disease, regardless of the cause. Some prescription diets are specially formulated to dissolve stones. My favorite diet for FLUTD is C/D Multi-care Stress, made by Hill’s science diet. However, if a prescription diet is out of your budget, try an over-the-counter bag of food for urinary health. Purina Pro Plan makes a “Urinary Tract Health Formula” that you can order online or at Petco.

If you do those steps and your cat is still having accidents, talk to your vet or a veterinary behaviorist to discuss other treatment options and to make sure a health problem was not missed!

Questions for Readers:
Has your pet ever had this problem? What worked for him or her?
If you try these tips, please comment below on what worked (or didn’t)!

Resources & References: 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”