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New user, hello and..o god please help me:/

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone

So heres the story, I have 3 cats, 7 years,5 years and 8 months old. I noticed "dandruff" on my cat Joey a few weeks back and figured it was from the chilly weather we are starting to get, and figured it would subside. The other night I noticed it more then usual so I brushed him really well. Today I woke up and was giving the cats their morning love, and I noticed a black spot on joeys paw and what almost seemed to be blood. I blew on his paw to get the black spot off, and...it jumped I literally sceamed at the top of my lungs and then noticed they were EVERYWHERE on him(

I then immediatly called the vet who said I needed to come get frontline to treat all three of my cats. I asked what to do about the house and they said I could either bomb it, exterminate, or get a spray they had called Siphotrol Plus 2 Premise spray, which is safe to use with the cats still in the house (just in another room with the door shut for a few minutes), and that this worked as well as the bombing.

I sped to the vet, came home, treated all three cats immeditely with frontline, which is when i noticed they all had the fleas of course. (Joey was more noticeable because he has some white fur). I then sprayed the whole apartment with the spray, washed every rug, curtain, and article of clothing not in a closet, and prayed. This was all done about 8 hours ago.

Ive owned cats for 20 years and never have any of my cats had fleas, none have ever gone outside. But i now live in a half underground bottom floor apt where my cats sit on the windowsills and stray cats always come up to the screen..a whole other problem. But point is, I have no idea about fleas, the signs of them, or anything about them...so this whole time I thought it was dandruff while my poor cats are suffering right in front of me

I was thinking back the last 2 weeks or so and now that Ive read up on fleas..the black dots you see? EVERYWHERE IN MY APT its been..I had no idea where it was coming from so I just kept wiping eveything down with my beloved bottle of lysol with bleach And my cats, the two larger ones, have blad spots with scabs where the bald spots are..which I thought were from my kitten who isnt declawed, thinking it was from them playing with one another.

Well its 8 hours later after treatment and I think Im literally ready for a mental breakdown. I ve been in hysterics for the last 3 hours and Im lost about what to do. I dont know if its because I see them more now because I know theyre now there, or if they are literally trying to scare the hell outta me..but there are live fleas allll over the place( Everywhere I look im picking them up with tweezers and putting them in a cup of rubbing alcohol. I see them crawling all over my cats and I try to get them with the tweezers but they scurry deep into the fur and I just start crying again cause my cat is now meowing at me..I think he knows I finally realized what the hell is going on. Theyre already back on the sheets I washed and anything else my cats came in contact with.

So what I need help with is, how in the heckkk do you get rid of these things??? Frontline says it takes about 24 hours to kill the fleas on the cats, so Ill be checking my cats for any live fleas tomorrow. But theres still going to be live fleas and eggs in my apt, which will be hatching if Im not mistaken? Isnt this a viscious cycle here? Where does it end? How do I stop eggs from hatching or kill the live fleas that arent on my cat? I cant sleep, I havent eaten all day because I refuse to eat anything because I am beyond skeeved right now.

Im a cat veteran, but never have I dealt with fleas and Im so lost and in tears watching my poor cats crying at me from the bites theyre getting. Can anyone help me with any suggestions whatsoever?? Ty so much, Im so sorry for such a long post but I am stressed beyond belief. So Ill just sit back here with my Stoli Raspberry and 7-up and pray for a response soon hhaa! TY sooo much

post #2 of 23
If your cats are covered with fleas, you need to get them to the vet for blood work and a check. Fleas carry disease, and they give your cats worms and they also are in danger of becoming anemic. I would board the cats at the vets for 2 days and treat your home in their absence. Lysol is a no-no to use when you have cats, they have a real issue with this product and it can make them sick.
post #3 of 23
But i now live in a half underground bottom floor apt where my cats sit on the windowsills and stray cats always come up to the screen..a whole other problem.
If your windows are at ground level and they only thing between your cats and the cats outside is a screen, close the windows.
Otherwise, you'll just keep getting infestations as well as other possibly worse things.
post #4 of 23
working at a petstore, i have to watch some of the animals i come in contact with, one time a cat had mites and i brought them home to my animals, sometimes if one flea jumps on you, viola, you have bought home some. I make sure now that I wash my hands every time I leave.
post #5 of 23
I adopted my cat when he was a 2 month old kitten who was absolutely infested with fleas. He was borderline anemic and I have never seen so many fleas on an animal. As soon as I got him, he got a flea bath and I picked out as many fleas off as I could with a pair of tweezers. The next morning he got frontline and after 12 hours, I threw out all the towels he had been sleeping on (he'd been locked in the bathroom), gave him another bath, and picked out all the rest of the fleas with tweezers. Unfortunately, my apartment was already infested with the fleas he'd brought in. I sprinkled mule 20 borox all over the carpet and vaccumed like a crazy person. My apartment is currently flea free (as far as I can tell), but 3 months ago, I was covered in flea bites. Vacuum like a crazy person and make sure to throw out the vacuum bags every time you vacuum. good luck!
post #6 of 23
If you cat has been spot treated by medicine from the vet a bath will spoil the effects of that. use a flea comb and remove the fleas
post #7 of 23
Hi all -- I've been lurking for about a week but had to join to chime in on this thread.

I had a flea infestation once, many years ago when my kitties were allowed outdoors. It was so bad that the fleas jumped on my legs when I walked into the bedroom and bit me while I slept. Where I live, there are BAD flea years every few years. I was as upset as you are.

Anyhow, my advice is to take them to the vet for a dipping overnight and while they're gone, BOMB. The only thing that works in cases like this is to flea bomb.
If you can't afford to leave them at the vet's overnight, then take them for a long ride until it's safe for all of you to return. Whatever way you have to do it, though, bombing is only thing that will get everywhere.
post #8 of 23
Something else that other users have suggested is to take a flea collar, cut it up, and put it in your vacuum bag. I wouldn't use them on your cats, but I've heard that this works for killing fleas that were in your carpets. Good luck, fleas are nasty little things!
post #9 of 23
Use the vacuum cleaner over and over. Also, you need to get the cats somewhere else for a while and have your apartment treated. If you can't afford a professional, then buy some of the bombs and set them off. You will have to stay out of the house for or five hours. And yes you will have to keep doing it until the eggs quit hatching out.
When you vacuum you need to spray insect spray inside the bag so they will die or either throw away the bag OUTSIDE somewhere every time you use the vacuum.
Your cats don't need to be sitting on the window sill nose to nose with other cats that you have no idea what disease they might be carriers of. Close you windows and don't allow your cats to have contact with strangers.
post #10 of 23
You will need to treat your apartment, whether use use a flea bomb or hire a professional, either way it will need to be done to prevent reinfestation. If you have a bad and recurring flea problem, I would switch medications every other month because fleas can build a resistance to the medicine after a while and switching back and forth prevents this. I love Revoluion, but will switch and also use Advantage, switching back and forth per my vets advice. You should make it a habit to give the meds every month on the same day. Once you have treated your apartment, put a cut up flea collar in your vacuum, so you can keep things under control. You can give your cats a bath after treating them, just wait about 24 hours. After that bathing will not effect how effective the medication is, by that time the medication has been absorbed and working full force. My cat came from the shelter infested with fleas, I treated him the first time and then I had to bath my cat the next day after treating him for flea's, a flea comb on a medium hair cat would take weeks to get rid of the flea dander. My cats fleas are dead, he is clean. And my apartment is clear of fleas by doing the things that I mentioned. GOOD LUCK!!
p.s. My cat also had dermatitis and bald patch on his face from fleas, they healed and the fur is growing back.
post #11 of 23
Originally Posted by Arlyn
If your windows are at ground level and they only thing between your cats and the cats outside is a screen, close the windows.
Otherwise, you'll just keep getting infestations as well as other possibly worse things.
Wouldn't just using the preventative meds you get from a vet work too? I just can't imagine never being able to have my window open.
post #12 of 23
i hope your kitties get rid of those nasty fleas soon!

when i got my stray, she was absolutely covered in fleas as well. i gave her a bath in dawn dishwashing soap- voila! most of them were gone, and i combed out the rest of the fleas with a flea comb. she's too little right now, but in a week she'll be getting her revolution treatment.

as for the house...

i never knew if Pouncer put fleas in my carpet or not, but just in case she did, i used the vaccuum + salt + vaccuum trick. which is basically- vaccuum all over the house, sprinkle salt all over your carpets, leave it there for a couple of days (i left it a week, but this method isn't recommended for people who live in humid areas, because the salt tends to get wet and will ruin your carpet) and vaccuum again. the idea is that the intial vaccuuming wakes up the flea eggs/larvae- the salt dries up the flea eggs and larvae, and then you vaccuum up their dead bodies.

that same day i mopped all my floors with baking soda + water, and washed all my kitten's blankets and bedding and toys.

it took the whole day, but not a flea yet on my furniture. phew.

i hope your flea infestion is over soon!
post #13 of 23
For fleas on the cats, sure, but ground level windows are inviting fleas into the home, they are too small to be bothered by a screen.

My concern here though was more because her cats are interacting without strange, outdoor cats with only a screen between them.
A screen will not act as a profilactic against viri and bacteria.
post #14 of 23
Since you said that you live in an apartment, call the front office, they usually have professionals come out and bomb the place.
If they don't, buy the bombs yourself. One of my apartments had fleas when I got there and we noticed right away (saw them jumping on the beds and in the carpet). We took the animals to my parents for the week (promptly giving a flea bath) while we waited for the bombing to happen. When it did, NOTHING changed. We called the front office again the guy came out and still nothing.
So we bombed the place ourselves and set off all 3 bombs (which now, thanks to Mythbusters I shouldn't have done, but oh well). That was the end of the fleas. We vacuumed and took the receipt to the front office. They reimbursed us for the $10 bombs.
post #15 of 23
So we bombed the place ourselves and set off all 3 bombs (which now, thanks to Mythbusters I shouldn't have done, but oh well).
Out of curiosity, why shouldn't you have done the three bombs at once? Bad for the kittys or something? I watch Mythbusters occasionally, which is what caught my attention!
post #16 of 23
I use a product called Capstar for weights of 2lbs to 25lbs for stubborn infestations along with my Frontline. I have found this product to work very well. I have two dogs that go outside and ride the little buggers inside to my Kitties. I order this product from the web at www.vetamerica.com. They are very good about getting your order to you right away. Here is the description from the box:

Manufactured by Novartis
Capstar, for flea infestations on dogs and cats. FAST ACTING: Begins working within 30 minutes. Capstar may be used as needed, as often as once per day, whenever you see fleas on your pet.Capstar is safe for use in dogs, puppies, cats and kittens 4 weeks of age and older, and 2 pounds of body weight or greater. Capstar is also safe for pregnant or breeding animals. Each package contains six tablets.
post #17 of 23
Our vet told us that Frontline Plus was all we needed. I had purchased some spray for the floors etc, and also some stuff for the yard. He said to go ahead and use the yard stuff but with Frontline Plus we didn't need to use anything else in the house as the Frontline Plus would take care of all of it. Hm, I didn't exactly understand, but it worked. We Frontline Plus once a month and didn't have any on dogs, cats or in house, til George and Daisy arrived with fleas. Here we go again. We used Advantage this time. Hope it works as well.
post #18 of 23
I hate to sound dumb, but I've never seen a cat with fleas...is there any chance that they aren't in colder, drier areas of the country like Wyoming and Colorado? That's where I've lived all my life...thanks - just wondering if I need to worry, I guess.
post #19 of 23
Thread Starter 
All of you have been such a GREAT GREAT help! I wouldve replied sooner but o god the cleaning has not stopped! So, heres what I've done...

As I said in my post, about 8 hours after I treated the cats and the apt with the spray I bought, I was literally seeing fleas EVERYWHERE. After I wrote the post, I went to check my cat to see if I could see live fleas on them and I freaked. Tens of fleas were on my oldest cat Joey, running around everywhere on him, mostly scurrying on his face and trying to get into his eyes and ears and he was meowing like crazy( I couldnt stop crying myself. It got to be so bad by that point I made phone calls to an emergency vet hospital and to frontlines 1-800 number in hysterics. What the vet told me is that the fleas running around like that is actually a GOOD sign because that means the frontline is starting to work because the fleas were trying to get away from the medicine on my cat. What Frontline told me is that how the treatment works is that the Frontline actually attacks the fleas central nervous system and put them in a hyperexcitablility stage and then they die. I asked why in the hell they couldnt put a downer in their medicine instead of damn speed, but all I got was a giggle from the lady on the line

Cincocats, what you said in your post both the vet told me and the 1-800 line for frontline told me also. They said that the fleas cannot live for more then anywhere from 4-18 hours on the cat once its applied. I told them I had treated my house with the spray the vet had given me and they said its good to do but not ABSOLUTLEY necessary. The reason being that once the fleas cant feed off the cats anymore, they jump off, but no longer have a host to feed on, so they die. They said all you really need is a good suction vaccuum and to just constantly vaccum the house. Made sense, but I still am not going to sit here waiting for fleas to die in my house without trying to quicken up the process myself.

So I investigated alot of websites and talked to a friend of mine that lives on the west coast and gets alot of fleas there because of the weather. Just like someone else said on this post, She swore to me up and down that I had to go out to the store and buy a few canisters of regular table salt and sprinkle it all over my rugs. leave it there for about two days, then vaccuum. This dries up the eggs. I also read that Borax on the carpets also works. So I was at the supermarket at 4 am buying Borax and salt haha! I salted all my rugs, then locked my kittys in the bedroom and put borax on my rugs everywhere else and let it sit overnight. I woke up the next day,vaccumed, running outside every 3 minutes emptying my bagless vacuum in to the dumpster. I had to leave a bucket of soapy water outside my door so I could wipe the inside of the canister before I entered my apt. again. I let my cats out of the bedroom then put borax on the rugs in the bedroom along with more salt everywhere again.

Then a maintence man here let me use their work room to keep the cats in while I bombed my apt. I stayed with my cats while it was being bombed, combing them all for hours and hours with a flea comb, dipping it in soapy water and wiping it with paper towels. I'm not sure if anyone would know this, but my one cat Joey was just INFESTED with flea dirt, I spent at least 2 hours alone just on him trying to get it all out. The other two werent a quarter as bad as joey was, hardly found any on them.

When I could go back in my apt, I left the cats in carriers in the room, ran to my apt, cleaned like a maniac again, and vaccumed, in case they would walk on any bombing residue, then let them all back in. I put moreeee salt down and now Im letting it sit for a few days. Today I must say, two days after I discovered the fleas, its SOOO much better now. I've found maybe 3 or 4 around the house which I killed. I flea combed them all again about an hour ago and Joey still had a few on him and a bit of dirt but nothingggg like it was before, and I can tell hes sooo much happier, purring and giving me lots of kisses

So I'm going to keep doing the salt thing, flea comb all the cats every night, and in two weeks Im going to the vet to get more spray and Im going to treat the house again. I also have an exterminator coming on Tuesday. I also bought stuff to treat outside of my apt to kill and deter fleas outside. I literally have not stopped for two days, had to call out of work yesterday just to get it under control, and I'm on about 4 hours sleep in two days right now:/ Theres nothing else I can do, I think I've done literally everything I can. This was just such a horrible experience But I'm glad at least I got it under some control...but I know the fights not over yet. Pleaseee, anyone who does not have their pets treated, please go buy frontline or advantage and treat them NOW so you never have to go through this hahaha!

I thank you all sooooooooo much for your advice, concern, and help, you have no idea how much this is appreciated. You are all sooo wonderful! I'll update you all in a few days and let you know how its progressing. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOUUUU!

Nicole, Joey, Sebastian, and Porsha
post #20 of 23
So glad to hear things are better!
post #21 of 23
glad to hear things are better... fleas can live in a sort of 'hibernation' state for a long time. when carbon dioxide becomes more prevalent in the atmosphere, meaning there are some mammals around, they sort of wake-up & go to town - & it can get really bad, really fast, especially if the previous tenants moved without treating an infestation. the good news is, once you get them out, it'll probably never be as bad. but yes, i've seen some bad ones around here, too - even in dorm rooms on campus where pets are not allowed. the fleas prefer the cats, but they'll eat off of you, too. carpets are bad because it gives them a place to wait in dormancy. that's one reason i have hard floors throughout my house.
post #22 of 23
I'm told that fleas can hang around(the hubernation mode) for 2 years. Just waiting. I use Advantage. I can get by using it only every 3 months. I have persians who never go outside.
post #23 of 23
Originally Posted by kluchetta
I hate to sound dumb, but I've never seen a cat with fleas...is there any chance that they aren't in colder, drier areas of the country like Wyoming and Colorado? That's where I've lived all my life...thanks - just wondering if I need to worry, I guess.
Here's an article on fleas in Colorado. There are actually 80 different species of fleas here but aren't a problem because of the low humidity. http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05600.html.
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