Monday, November 19, 2012

Avast, Thar Be Stowaways!

If you've been following the blog since it's inception then you know we've embarked on a move. Well that move has been tough on us all, even our Sea Dogs. One of the discoveries we made at our new residence was fleas! Yup, the dogs have never had them before, but they seem to be infesting the backyard, and now our dogs, and, well, everything. This has led to quite the battle of man v. pest, a battle which we are still fighting. 

It all started with itching dogs, constant scratching and biting of their booties. We didn't see any fleas and called the groomers. Pugs are prone to allergies, and Jackson has had this issue, so maybe it was brought on by something in the environment. The groomer confirmed some serious dry skin and thought it was from the change in climate. Then she moved on to Ruby and Bailey. Ruby had 2 fleas, no big deal. We weren't concerned. Once it was Bailey's turn (the least itchy of the bunch I might add) she had the most stowaways. There were fleas all over her. 

Relaxing with Ruby

Now we were at a bit of a loss on where to go from here. Having 3 dogs and a baby, we didn't really want to put toxic chemicals on to our pets. They often groom each other and as you can see, The First Mate is fond of the doggies. We waited it out a bit to see if the groomer's cleaning and bath would solve the problem. It did not. By this point I had just found a flea on the baby, at that was the final straw.


So off to the pet store I went with the newly walking First Mate. I thought it would be a fun trip now that he was uprightly mobile. He could look at the fish and kitties and we would have a blast. Ha, can you tell I'm a first time mom? He was having fun, and then he discovered the giant pooper scoopers. He then became obsessed with trying to pull them down on to his head. I scooped him up and we were off to another aisle. Navigating the flea and tick treatments isn't easy, but it's near impossible with a curious toddler. Finally I managed to find an all natural, and affordable treatment. I also grabbed a flea shampoo. Just when I thought I was  home free, The First Mate got squirmy and fussy. He wanted to walk, not be carried. I set him down and he just kept getting into trouble and trying to escape. I held his hand and told him he had to wait until Mommy paid. Then he went into full meltdown mode and screamed and cried. The poor patrons of Petco had to hear this until I could check out.

Later that night we applied the treatment and then realized that we didn't want the dogs in our bed. All those fleas abandoning ship would be in our sheets. Besides, the natural flea stuff smelled like a Christmas candle store exploded. This was when we made the decision of no more dogs in the bed, ever. I had been wanting to revert to this way of life for a while, but we had so many changes going on I didn't want to upset them anymore. Now was definitely the time. We set up a baby gate and they slept in the bathroom hallway. It has now been 3 nights, they are slowly adjusting.

A few days later, after the treatment was well absorbed into their skin, we gave them a flea bath. This seems to have helped quite a bit. Now we just have to keep it up on a regular basis to keep the fleas away. If you've got some helpful flea tips, please share.

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