5 Best Flea Treatment for Dogs Reviewed

Are you having goosebumps just by thinking of your pet having fleas? Well, you should be. Fleas do not just act like mini-vampires sucking your dog’s blood but they can actually wreak havoc to your canine’s overall health. In fact, even fleas’ saliva is considered toxic and can cause irritation and swelling of the skin.

So how do you go about them? Thankfully, with this article, you can find out about the most effective flea and tick prevention medicines for dogs.

ProductRankingFeaturesBuy & Price
Frontline Plus5Waterproof flea and tick treatmentBuy from amazon
Seresto Flea and Tick Collar4Avoids hassle of monthly treatmentBuy from amazon
Novartis Capstar Flea Tablets3Kills 4 hours after application of the tabletBuy from amazon
Advantage II Topical Flea Treatment Dogs2Kills multiple flea life stagesBuy from amazon
Bayer K9 Advantix II1Fast parasitostatic actionBuy from amazon

5. Frontline Plus

Frontline Plus for Dogs Large Dog (45 to 88 pounds) Flea and Tick Treatment, 6 Doses

2,279 Reviews

The fifth on our list, Frontline Plus, is a product mass-produced by Merial – a multinational animal health company. Merial also manufactures other veterinary products recommended to pet owners. Frontline Plus stands out among the crowd because not only pet owners but also veterinarians acknowledge it.

Frontline Plus works for dogs and puppies eight weeks and older, weighing less than 22 pounds to 88 pounds. It is also available in either thee doses or six doses each with a lasting effect of one month.

For dogs, the product is available at 0.67 ml applicators if they weigh up to 22 pounds. 1.34 ml applicators are available for dogs and puppies weighing 23-44 pounds. The 2.68 ml applicators are for dogs and puppies weighing 45-88 pounds.

If your pets weigh around 89-132 pounds, there is an applicator available at 4.02 ml. Your feline friends infested by fleas can also use Frontline Plus.

This waterproof flea and tick treatment for dogs is fast-acting and has a long-lasting effect. So if your fur babies take a dip into the water, you don’t need to bother with reapplying the product. You should observe a drying time of 24 hours before swimming or bathing.

Application of Frontline Plus on your dogs is monthly. It begins killing fleas after 12 hours of application, while ticks and chewing lice will take 48 hours.

In making Frontline Plus, Merial used a combination of chemicals that help kill both ticks and fleas. The integrated flea control is the combination of insecticides into one product.

Active ingredients present in Frontline Plus are Fipronil at 9.8% and S-Methoprene at 11.8%. These chemicals target different life cycles of ticks and fleas, for the prevention of infestation among pets.

The product is also notable for being effective against all stages of the brown dog tick and American dog ticks. The lone star tick and deer tick which is known as the carrier of Lyme disease are also no exception.

Checking on the toxicity of the chemicals used is essential to know whether there is a need for further caution.

Temporary irritation in the site of application may occur. If your pets suffer from such then it is completely normal. If the signs persist or become severe few days after the application, immediately seek the opinion of a veterinarian.

Fipronil can cause skin irritation in humans. Ingestion of said chemical might cause a few health-related effects such as vomiting, headache, weakness, seizure, and dizziness.

There is no need for treatment if exposure to the substance is brief and at a minimal amount. Excretion of the Fipronil upon ingestion is through the urine or feces.

S-Methoprene, the other chemical used in the product, is also reported to be toxic to humans. It is also not known to be carcinogenic and not identified as a cholinesterase inhibitor.

The product is available on Amazon and reviewed by more than 4,000 customers. Majority of the customers, about 58%, gave the product a perfect score. Almost 21% of its users, however, gave it one star and complained about the products’ effectivity.

Pros

  • Applicators are available for dogs of different sizes
  • Can also be used for cats

Cons

  • Can cause an allergic reaction to some cats or dogs
  • Also harmful to humans, especially to children, if ingested
Seresto flea collar for dogs, 8-month flea and tick prevention for dogs over 18 lbs

10,856 Reviews

Bayer is a renowned pharmaceutical company that also operates in different countries. It has produced several veterinary products that are also recommended by veterinarians. Pet owners are aware of the company’s reputation and give its products high regards.

Seresto is one of those merchandises from Bayer recommended to pet owners. It is a flea and tick collar that is available for dogs of different sizes. A different product is made for large dogs aged seven weeks onwards and weighs over 15 pounds.

The collar gives dogs protection for eight months. There is no need to administer treatment monthly through this fragrance-free, non-greasy collar.

Eliminating the need for monthly application ticks and fleas can be repelled immediately after worn by dogs. Within 48 hours, your pets are assured to be free of infestation. It can kill fleas before they can begin to lay eggs.

Biting is not required for the active ingredients, Flumethrin and Imidacloprid, in the collar to kill ticks and fleas. These are active ingredients stored within the collar and released in low concentrations.

If it worries you that it might lose its result when wet, then don’t be. Designed to be water-resistant, the collar is efficient even when used after shampoo treatment.

But, the length of the active ingredients in the collar shortens if dogs love to swim. The 8-months duration shortens to 5-months if dogs take a swim once a month or more.

Running around and being stuck will not be a problem because of its ratchet release mechanism. Your pet can free itself if put under pressure.

When trapped pets can easily break free as the collar has a pre-determined breaking point. Dangerous situations can easily be avoided with such a feature.

Not only is it effective in killing and repelling ticks and fleas, but it can also control sarcoptic mange on dogs.

Pros

  • No need for monthly application
  • Odorless, easy to apply, and safe to chew on

Cons

  • The effect wears out if dogs often take a bath or swim
  • Active ingredients use may cause irritation to both dogs and humans if it comes into contact with the skin

3. Capstar Flea Tablets

Capstar Fast-Acting Oral Flea Treatment for Dogs

4,488 Reviews

The next one on our list that landed itself at the third spot is Capstar Flea Tablets. It was second on the list but considering its mechanism of action, the tablet could use some improving.

Capstar Flea Tablet is a product from Novartis – a global healthcare company based in Switzerland. For the company, its goal is to provide solutions to its patients’ growing needs.

Capstar can kill dog and cat fleas four hours after application. There are different doses of the product used on dogs weighing 2-25 pounds and dogs weighing more than 25 pounds. And pets age four weeks and older.

Capstar Flea Treatment can kill adult lice using one tablet. Give one dosage a day to dogs if re-infested. It is fast-acting – killing fleas four hours after administration.

You can give it to your dogs orally. If you cannot feed it to your pets, you can also mix it into their food. If you are unsure of the ingestion of the pill by your dog, it is safe for you to give another dose.

The active ingredient in Capstar Flea Treatment is Nitenpyram – an anti-parasitic drug used to treat fleas. Its effect is more toxic to adult fleas; the reason why the product was only ranked third among five. The flea eggs remain in the body of your pets and would eventually hatch.

Infestation is still present despite the absence of adult fleas. As the flea eggs hatch, it turns into its adult form, laying another set of flea eggs. This may become a repetitive cycle unless treatment is continuous.

The chemical is safe for use among reproducing males and females. However, continuous treatment of Nitenpyram may cause an overdose. An overdose is likely to happen if given at more than 100 mg/kg.

Nitenpyram is only effective against fleas. Ticks, mites, or lice are not affected by the chemical. There is a need to use a different product alongside Capstar to help control ticks.

Pros

  • Can be used for both cats and dogs
  • Kills fleas four hours after ingestion

Cons

  • Not effective on ticks, mites or lice
  • Only kills an adult form of fleas but not eggs

2. Advantage II Topical Flea Treatment

Flea and Lice Treatment for Dogs, Over 55 lb, 6 doses, Advantage II

1,477 Reviews

Another one from Bayer is the Advantage II topical flea treatment. Bayer is not only friendly to dogs. It also manufactures flea products for puppies, and Advantage II is one of them.

Advantage II comes with different specifications: for small, medium, large, and extra-large dogs. There are different dose recommended for each size.

Small dogs are the ones that weigh 3-10 pounds. Medium dogs are those that weigh 1 to 20 pounds. Large dogs weigh around 21 to 55 pounds, and more than that is extra-large.

Applicator sizes are as follows:

  • Small dogs – 0.4 ml
  • Medium dogs – 1.0 ml
  • Large dogs – 2.5 ml
  • Extra-large dogs – 4.0 ml

Flea allergy dermatitis is a skin disorder in dogs caused by the successive feeding activity of dog lice. Within 12 hours of application, this waterproof and fragrance-free topical treatment can kill fleas in any of its life stages.

The product is available in either three doses or six doses. Each dosage, when applied topically can prevent infestation for 30 days.

Just like Capstar Flea Treatment, Advantage II also does kill fleas. However, the product has a wider range of scope. It can be used not only on canines and felines but also on ferrets.

It is likely that some pets may be sensitive to the chemicals used in the formulation of Advantage II. If it does and it only lasts for less than 48 hours, then there is no need to be alarmed. However, if signs and symptoms persist and it becomes severe, consulting your veterinarian should be in order.

Pros

  • Kills fleas of all life stages within 12 hours of application
  • Waterproof and fragrance-free

Cons

  • Can’t kill ticks
  • May contain chemicals that can cause irritation to some sensitive pets

1. Frontline Plus

The fifth on our list, Frontline Plus, is a product mass-produced by Merial – a multinational animal health company. Merial also manufactures other veterinary products recommended to pet owners. Frontline Plus stands out among the crowd because not only pet owners but also veterinarians acknowledge it.

Frontline Plus works for dogs and puppies eight weeks and older, weighing less than 22 pounds to 88 pounds. It is also available in either thee doses or six doses each with a lasting effect of one month.

For dogs, the product is available at 0.67 ml applicators if they weigh up to 22 pounds. 1.34 ml applicators are available for dogs and puppies weighing 23-44 pounds. The 2.68 ml applicators are for dogs and puppies weighing 45-88 pounds.

If your pets weigh around 89-132 pounds, there is an applicator available at 4.02 ml. Your feline friends infested by fleas can also use Frontline Plus.

This waterproof flea and tick treatment for dogs is fast-acting and has a long-lasting effect. So if your fur babies take a dip into the water, you don’t need to bother with reapplying the product. You should observe a drying time of 24 hours before swimming or bathing.

Application of Frontline Plus on your dogs is monthly. It begins killing fleas after 12 hours of application, while ticks and chewing lice will take 48 hours.

In making Frontline Plus, Merial used a combination of chemicals that help kill both ticks and fleas. The integrated flea control is the combination of insecticides into one product.

Active ingredients present in Frontline Plus are Fipronil at 9.8% and S-Methoprene at 11.8%. These chemicals target different life cycles of ticks and fleas, for the prevention of infestation among pets.

The product is also notable for being effective against all stages of the brown dog tick and American dog ticks. The lone star tick and deer tick which is known as the carrier of Lyme disease are also no exception.

Checking on the toxicity of the chemicals used is essential to know whether there is a need for further caution.

Temporary irritation in the site of application may occur. If your pets suffer from such then it is completely normal. If the signs persist or become severe few days after the application, immediately seek the opinion of a veterinarian.

Fipronil can cause skin irritation in humans. Ingestion of said chemical might cause a few health-related effects such as vomiting, headache, weakness, seizure, and dizziness.

There is no need for treatment if exposure to the substance is brief and at a minimal amount. Excretion of the Fipronil upon ingestion is through the urine or feces.

S-Methoprene, the other chemical used in the product, is also reported to be toxic to humans. It is also not known to be carcinogenic and not identified as a cholinesterase inhibitor.

The product is available on Amazon and reviewed by more than 4,000 customers. Majority of the customers, about 58%, gave the product a perfect score. Almost 21% of its users, however, gave it one star and complained about the products’ effectivity.

The fifth on our list, Frontline Plus, is a product mass-produced by Merial – a multinational animal health company. Merial also manufactures other veterinary products recommended to pet owners. Frontline Plus stands out among the crowd because not only pet owners but also veterinarians acknowledge it.

Frontline Plus works for dogs and puppies eight weeks and older, weighing less than 22 pounds to 88 pounds. It is also available in either thee doses or six doses each with a lasting effect of one month.

For dogs, the product is available at 0.67 ml applicators if they weigh up to 22 pounds. 1.34 ml applicators are available for dogs and puppies weighing 23-44 pounds. The 2.68 ml applicators are for dogs and puppies weighing 45-88 pounds.

If your pets weigh around 89-132 pounds, there is an applicator available at 4.02 ml. Your feline friends infested by fleas can also use Frontline Plus.

This waterproof flea and tick treatment for dogs is fast-acting and has a long-lasting effect. So if your fur babies take a dip into the water, you don’t need to bother with reapplying the product. You should observe a drying time of 24 hours before swimming or bathing.

Application of Frontline Plus on your dogs is monthly. It begins killing fleas after 12 hours of application, while ticks and chewing lice will take 48 hours.

In making Frontline Plus, Merial used a combination of chemicals that help kill both ticks and fleas. The integrated flea control is the combination of insecticides into one product.

Active ingredients present in Frontline Plus are Fipronil at 9.8% and S-Methoprene at 11.8%. These chemicals target different life cycles of ticks and fleas, for the prevention of infestation among pets.

The product is also notable for being effective against all stages of the brown dog tick and American dog ticks. The lone star tick and deer tick which is known as the carrier of Lyme disease are also no exception.

Checking on the toxicity of the chemicals used is essential to know whether there is a need for further caution.

Temporary irritation in the site of application may occur. If your pets suffer from such then it is completely normal. If the signs persist or become severe few days after the application, immediately seek the opinion of a veterinarian.

Fipronil can cause skin irritation in humans. Ingestion of said chemical might cause a few health-related effects such as vomiting, headache, weakness, seizure, and dizziness.

There is no need for treatment if exposure to the substance is brief and at a minimal amount. Excretion of the Fipronil upon ingestion is through the urine or feces.

S-Methoprene, the other chemical used in the product, is also reported to be toxic to humans. It is also not known to be carcinogenic and not identified as a cholinesterase inhibitor.

The product is available on Amazon and reviewed by more than 4,000 customers. Majority of the customers, about 58%, gave the product a perfect score. Almost 21% of its users, however, gave it one star and complained about the products’ effectivity.

Pros

  • Applicators are available for dogs of different sizes
  • Can also be used for cats

Cons

  • Can cause an allergic reaction to some cats or dogs
  • Also harmful to humans, especially to children, if ingested

Guide to Our Entries’ Active Ingredients

It is also important to know what active ingredients are used for the formulation of each product. Knowing which ingredients were used and how toxic it can be to your dogs is a precautionary measure.

  • Frontline Plus

Frontline Plus contains Fipronil, a chemical that inhibits gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Fipronil is an ingredient used for the product to prevent the propagation of ticks in dogs.

It only works on ticks because GABA is a neurotransmitter that controls its neuromuscular activity. Inhibition of the neuromuscular activity of ticks will then lead to death.

Another ingredient included in the manufacture of Frontline Plus is S-Methoprene. S-Methoprene is also a chemical produced only in adult vermin. Used for flea control treatment, it prevents immature flea from turning into adults.

With the use of the same chemical, the product can kill flea eggs. It enters into walls of the flea eggs and stops it from hatching.

There was a conducted to test the efficacy of Fipronil and S-Methoprene against dog ticks. Through the study, Fipronil at 9.8% w/w + S-Methoprene at 8.8% w/w combination proved to be efficient for tick control. Dogs treated using this integrated flea control recorded to be free of live ticks.

On recent research conducted, Fipronil and S-Methoprene with the same percent mass were used on infested dogs. The studies have different methodologies, but, the conclusion is similar. Fipronil + S-Methoprene was again proven to be efficient in preventing infestation of ticks and fleas among dogs.

  • Seresto

Flumethrin used as an acaricide was registered for use on animals in 1986. Acaricides are substances considered poisonous to mites and ticks. At 4.5%, Flumethrin is one of the active ingredients used by Bayer in the Seresto collar.

Flumethrin, once ingested by ticks, will cause the gated sodium channels in neural tissues to remain open. Once opened for an extended period; far longer than it is normal, will receive an influx of sodium.

The effect will be very evident in tissues stimulated by the chemical. These tissues will experience repetitive shorter or longer bursts of nerve impulses causing the organisms’ death.

Imidacloprid, another active ingredient in Seresto collars, is an insecticide. It became the largest selling insecticide used for agricultural and veterinary purposes. Imidacloprid mimics nicotine which is toxic to insects.

Bayer made use of the combination of Flumethrin and Imidacloprid as the active ingredients in this particular product. When both chemicals are used together, as studies have shown, they become sustainable means of controlling ticks and fleas in dogs. Seresto collar is also very efficient in preventing tick-borne pathogens to infect dogs.

As used by farmers as an insecticide, they’ve reported about the signs and symptoms they have felt upon exposure to Imidacloprid. They said to have experienced skin irritation, dizziness, breathlessness, or vomiting.

Animals that have ingested Imidacloprid-containing products were said to experience vomiting or drooling. It is important to handle it with caution to avoid too much exposure.

  • Capstar Flea Tablets

Capstar Flea Tablets contains Nitenpyram – an antiparasitic drug that is toxic to fleas.

Nitenpyram is also related to Imidacloprid, thus, both have the same mechanism of action. Nitenpyram also induces the influx production of sodium ions by inhibiting the postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

  • Advantage II Topical Flea Treatment

Imidacloprid is one of the main ingredients used by Bayer in making Advantage II for extra-large dogs. It is the combination of Imidacloprid and Pyriproxyfen. The formulation for Advantage II by weight is 9.10% and 0.46% Pyriproxyfen.

Also, use in agriculture, Pyriproxyfen is known as an insect growth regulator (IGR). IGR is a compound that mimics a natural hormone found in insects responsible for metamorphosis. It will inhibit the flea eggs from hatching and prevent the larvae from developing further.

The individual use of these chemicals has proven to be very efficient to prevent infestation in dogs. A combination of both is lethal for small ectoparasites such as fleas and ticks.

There was a research done to test Imidacloprid and Pyriproxyfen when used together. The conclusion of the study helped shed light into the effectivity of the combined substances as flea treatment.

When compared to the use of a single insecticide, Imidacloprid + Pyriproxyfen was more effective. It is especially true for the reduction and the elimination of flea infestations in dogs and their environment.

The toxicity of Pyriproxyfen in humans and other mammals is very low. So the use of Pyriproxyfen in a flea treatment product for dogs is safe. Similarly, as mentioned, Imidacloprid is also a safe chemical to use as a treatment for flea infestation in dogs.

The combination of Pyriproxyfen and Imidacloprid is, therefore, not toxic to both dogs and humans especially. But you should note that proper handling of products that contains these chemicals is necessary.

  • Advantix II

Active ingredients used in Advantix II are 8.8% Imidacloprid and Pyriproxyfen at 0.44%. These are active ingredients similar to that of Advantage II. However, the addition of Permethrin at 44.0% differentiates Advantix II from Advantage II.

Permethrin is part of the pyrethroid family that is commonly used as an insecticide. This chemical is also a method of choice in public health mosquito control programs. It is a common ingredient used in products to treat scabies and head lice.

As an insecticide, its primary goal is to affect the nervous system of insects. Hence, contact or ingestion of insects will lead to its death. Humans and dogs are less sensitive to the effects of Permethrin, unlike cats.

For humans, it may cause irritation, burning, and itching at the site of contact. Even when ingested, Permethrin can easily be absorbed in the body and eliminated through urine or feces.

In addition, it was not identified as a carcinogenic substance. But long-term exposure in dogs may lead to an enlargement of the kidney.

The combination of these three chemicals into one product resulted in one of the most recommended flea treatments by veterinarians.

Imidacloprid being a widely used insecticide for agricultural and veterinary purposes has proven to be very efficient. It can kill fleas in all life stages, unlike Nitenpyram which can only kill adult fleas.

Pyriproxyfen which is an IGR is also a very effective insecticide. Add Permethrin into the equation and Bayer has given you Advantix II.

Buyer’s Guide – Flea Treatment for Dogs

Good reviews online should weigh much as a criterion in choosing which product to use. But before you purchase any product, whether it has been listed above or not, you should consider the following:

  • Effectivity – How effective is the product in treating flea infestation in dogs, and how fast does it take effect?
  • Toxicity – These products may contain chemicals that are toxic not just to your pets but also to you. Have the knowledge about the active ingredients used and see how it might affect you and your pet.
  • Duration – How long does the effect of the products last?
  • Availability – Some products might not be readily available in your local markets.
  • Usage – How many times a day should the product be used on your pets?

Your pets will always rely on you to make the decision for them. These factors are just a few of many matters that should be considered before you make your purchase. There is nothing wrong with experimenting but considering these factors will lessen the stress on you and your pet.