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Please help with tapeworms and fleas

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I took my two 3 1/2 month old kittens in on July 8th and was told they had flea dirt on them. They were given Frontline and I was told to vaccum with a flea collar in the bag. I was brushing them with a flea comb and five days later, July 12th, I was still seeing live fleas on them. I called the vet and they gave me 2 Knockout foggers for my apartment and a Capstar pill for each. I did this on Sunday the 13th. The next day I walked around the apartment with my white socks on and there were fleas on me. They were given Profender on the 16th for a positive result of tapeworms. I checked them every day with the comb and didn't see fleas on them until Thursday 17th, but I was getting fleas on me. The vet gave me Revolution and three more Capstar pills for each. The vet tech recommended waiting to give the Revolution until I can get an exterminater in and giving the Capstar twice a week or every other day. I gave them a Capstar pill that same night. I have an exterminater coming on Thursday 24th. I checked them today and found live fleas on them. I have been vacuuming every day and throwing the bag away each time. When I walk through my apartment I wear long pants with tall white socks on and have not seen a flea on me since last night, but do see them in the ziplock bag I put the vacuum bag in. I feel like I should give the Revolution now instead of waiting, but I am not sure how it works. I thought the Frontline would kill any flea that bit them and it didn't. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I am also still seeing white specks in their poop. I guess that won't go away until the fleas do or should they be treated with a different med? They are now being kept in the bathroom since she poops on the carpet and I was worried about the tapeworms getting in the carpet. Since I was kissing, cuddling and they were on my bed playing and sleeping with me I was also told I had a chance of getting tapeworms
I know this was long and I would be so very grateful for any help and advice. These kittens have had so many other health problems and I have put several thousands on my Visa already.
post #2 of 13
1st off - while people can get tapeworms, they're not the same as the kind cats get, which are part of the flea life cycle. i think you're ok, on that front.
Quote:
Can people get tapeworms?
Not generally. On very rare occasions, children have been infected with Dipylidium species by swallowing a flea accidentally. It generally causes tremendous cramping and discomfort. Totally unrelated to dogs and cats are the tapeworms that people are getting from eating Sushi or raw fish. There are certain species of tapeworms that use the fish as an intermediate host. If food is cooked properly there is no worry.
2nd - try the CatAttract kitten litter for the pooping issue - it really works!

3rd - sounds like you're doing everything possible for the flea issue; your cats must've had a MASSIVE flea infestation! alternatively - if animals had ever lived there before, flea eggs can lie dormant for years until something tasty shows up - then they hatch [the eggs can get way down in the base of the carpet fibers]. i had something similar happen w/my 1st pair of cats. they were flea-free until moving into my apartment [which i also thought was flea-free]. fleas came out of nowhere!
post #3 of 13
Fleas take alot of persistance to get rid of them. The eggs hatch about 3 or 4 days after they're laid...so if you get the 'live' fleas..you're getting the adults....then the eggs hatch after that.

Can you try dunking the kittens in water....but not over their heads!! The water will instantly kill the fleas..but not the eggs. Some fleas may 'run' to the neck and head area...so pehaps you could comb them out after a water bath. Dunk them in plain water every other day until you don't see fleas anymore. Putting so many chemicals into the kittens skin just can't be good for them. Water won't hurt them.

I'm sorry, I cannot help with the tapeworms....I heard that one of the flea, tick, mite applications will kill the tapeworms...but I'm not sure.

I'm sure someone can give you tips on that aspect of things.

Good luck!
post #4 of 13
Fleas are persistent little beggers. If you've had a bad flea infestation the eggs and hatching fleas are going to be in your carpeting for sure. You cat are about 4 months old now so bathing them in Dawn liquid detergent (original Dawn) will drown the fleas on the kitties. Make sure the fleas don't migrate up to the head and ears by soaping around the neck first. Rinse the kitties well and use a flea comb to get any strays out. The soap is what causes them to drown - water alone may not work because they can jump away.

Cut up a flea collar and put pieces in your vacuum - vacuum every day and immediately empty the vacuum contents outside.

Go to a garden centre (or call around to health food stores and garden centres) to find some human/food grade diatomaceous earth. Sprinkle the DE over your carpeting and even some on your padded furniture. Sweep the DE down into the fibres. Human/food grade DE is totally safe around your cats. It is best to not inhale the powder while applying - it won't kill you but it can irritate your lungs - same for your kitty. If the cats ingest any the only thing it will do is cleanse their system of parasites which isn't a bad thing.
post #5 of 13
One thing: absolutely do not give the cats a second flea product (the Revolution) until a month after you gave the Frontline. You'd be double dosing them and it could hurt them. I'm surprised your vet had you give this Capstar when they'd already been given Frontline. They're already double-dosed, so definitely don't triple dose.

These topical (and, I would guess, ingestible) flea products are absorbed into the animal's body, so they're still in there. It takes a month for them to wear off. So the fact that the animals still have fleas is due to the intensity of the infestation in your house, not a failure of the flea treatment.

Follow all the other methods to treat your house, but no more anti-flea products for the cats until the correct time has elapsed since the last flea product you put on them (Capstar and Frontline). I agree with the earlier poster that washing them in water and Dawn might be a good, non-chemical option.

Personally, I like Advantage best. But Advantage, Revolution, and Frontline all work. You've just got a heavy infestation.
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Go to a garden centre (or call around to health food stores and garden centres) to find some human/food grade diatomaceous earth. Sprinkle the DE over your carpeting and even some on your padded furniture. Sweep the DE down into the fibres. Human/food grade DE is totally safe around your cats. It is best to not inhale the powder while applying - it won't kill you but it can irritate your lungs - same for your kitty. If the cats ingest any the only thing it will do is cleanse their system of parasites which isn't a bad thing.[/quote]

This is not sold in my area. Do you know of an online site that sells it and what should the label say...for example are there generic brands?
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaraC View Post
This is not sold in my area. Do you know of an online site that sells it and what should the label say...for example are there generic brands?
i can give you a couple of links. btw, i found mine in a feed store!
food grade DE
food grade DE 2
post #8 of 13
post #9 of 13
Yes please do not retreat your kitties, it could be deadly to them!

The DE earth is the best thing you can do and it works! Check out the Perma-Guard site, they offer the best product and the best prices. Beware of generic brands, they may not necessarily be the same quality as the Perma Guard.

The Perma Guard Fossil Shell is also edible by us humans so it is *very* safe.

Good luck.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your help and advice. I have someone coming out to treat the carpets on Thursday and will look into the DE earth also. I am vacuuming every day moving all the furniture I can and still find fleas in the bag. I am seeing them on me less though and found a dead one on my male kitten today. Any help with the tapeworms? They were given Profender, but I am still seeing white specks in their poop. Will the tapes stay until all the fleas are gone from the apartment or should they be given a different wormer? They have had a few other health issues since I got them and since I took them so frequently due to being nervous I have already spent thousands. This flea/tapeworm problem has just gotten me very discouraged and frustrated . Does anyone know since she had been pooping on the carpet if tapeworms could now be in the carpet? Thanks again for your help.
post #11 of 13
I don't believe that tapeworms can live outside a food source. There shouldn't be any food sources in your carpet.

Good luck with everything.
post #12 of 13
WE just found out today that our boys have fleas and tapeworms. Our vet was able to give them both an injection to get rid of the tapeworms as well as Frontline to get rid of the fleas.

My dad works for Orkin Pest Control so he has about 25 years experience dealing with fleas. We will be washing and vacuuming everything tomorrow, and vacuuming every 3 days (disposing of the vacuum bag each day)

Leslie
post #13 of 13
Since the flea infestation is continuing, yes, your cats are likely to need another worming treatment from the vet when this is all over. You should consult with your vet about the kind of wormer to give, and when. There are different wormers for different kinds of worms, and some need to be given more than once.
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