Parasite treatment is often considered a priority in summer with owners concerned about fleas, however parasites are actually prevalent at all times of the year. Skin problems caused by flea-bite allergy are a common parasite related problem treated by the vet. A single flea bite can make a dog scratch for weeks and cause redness and hair loss around the thighs and rump. Affected cats tend to have scabs in their coat or over-groom rather than scratch. A monthly spot-on from your vet clinic is usually the most effective treatment together with medications to relieve the itch if severe. An exciting new meaty chew for dogs that prevent fleas for 3 months with a single dose is proving very popular. Beside fleas we also need to provide pets with year round protection from intestinal worms. Puppies and kittens need to be wormed every 2-4 weeks until 6 months of age. Adult pets should be treated at least every 3 months, or once each season may be easier to remember. Dogs can also be protected from heartworm disease which is spread by mosquitoes biting and is highly prevalent around lakes and rivers. Heartworm protection can be easily provided with a once-a-year injection by your vet and can be timed to coincide with your pets annual vaccination. Combined treatments for fleas, worming and heartworm are also available and are given every month as a spot-on or oral preparation. Talk to your vet to find out what products will suit your pet household best and ensure parasites are prevented ALL year round! This is Dakota the 3 year old cat who gets regularly wormed at our clinic.