How To Tell If Your Dog Has Fleas Or Mites

Parasites are common among pets, especially dogs and cats that are allowed to roam outdoors. Various parasites can be native to a location, affecting pets throughout diverse times of the year. Pet owners should take note of the parasites common within their locale and observe their pets during the seasons they are most prone to infection.

Fleas and mites are common pests that can cause itching, skin irritation, and even infection in dogs. Both fleas and mites can be difficult to identify, but there are some tell-tale signs that might help you figure out what’s going on with your pup.

Fleas tend to be small, brown insects with six legs. They’re usually found on the hairs at the base of your dog’s tail or between their toes. A flea bite is usually red and inflamed, but sometimes it can be hard to see because your pet’s fur will hide it from view.

Mites are tiny brown bugs that live on the skin surface of dogs. They’re visible under a microscope and appear as tiny dots on your dog’s coat. Mites also cause an allergic reaction similar to a flea bite, which makes them hard to identify unless you know what you’re looking for.


The most common flea is the Ctenocephalides Felix, more commonly known as the cat flea, though there are various other types. This particular type of flea is capable of hosting humans, cats, dogs, rabbits, hamsters, rats, mice, guinea pigs, ferrets, and birds. These fleas rapidly reproduce and are capable of quickly infesting an entire household with both humans and pets as their hosts. If one pet has fleas, all pets within the household must be treated.

Fleas survive by ingesting the blood of their hosts. When they bite the host’s flesh, their saliva irritates the skin, causing the host to itch which in turn, may cause an allergic reaction. To determine if your pet has fleas, comb a section of hair on their back, towards a white piece of paper. If black flecks, resembling dirt, fall onto the paper, gently drop a very small amount of water onto the paper. If the black flecks begin to turn a rust-colored red, your pet has fleas. The rust hue is resultant of the blood being sucked out of your pet. If nothing comes off of your pet when brushed, or if the black flecks remain black, your pet is healthy.

Household inhabitants with fleas may experience: 

  • Anemia
  • Mild to severe scratching
  • Open sores
  • Pet owners experiencing flea bites

Treatment for fleas

If one pet in the household has fleas, all household inhabitants should be treated. Treatment can include either a shampoo or a topical treatment. Shampoos will kill fleas for a few days, whereas topical creams or gels will kill fleas for a few weeks. We recommend using topical treatments for a more thorough solution. If you would like recommendations when choosing a flea preventative, contact our veterinary office, and we would be happy to assist you in selecting a superior product for your pet.


Similar to numerous other parasites, mites exist in multiple forms. The ear mite is the most common type of mite among cats and dogs and frequently causes feline ear disease. Most mites are barely visible, forcing veterinarians to use a microscope to detect them on a pet and to determine the specific type. Most often, a pet contracts mites from another pet or from another pet’s bedding. Some mites, including scabies, are contagious to humans, while others, such as mange, are not.

Symptoms that a pet has mites: 

  • Crusty rash around ears
  • Dark, waxy, or crusty ear discharge
  • Hair loss from excessive scratching
  • Head shaking
  • Large blood blisters around ears
  • Patches of scaliness
  • Scratching

Treatment for mites

After the veterinarian has determined the type of mite bothering your pet through a microscope evaluation, they will determine the best form of treatment. Some mites can be treated with topical medications or oral medication; others are best handled with a medicated bath or dip. Some types of mites cannot be cured, but with the appropriate medication, the condition can be kept under control.

What Kills Fleas on a Dog Instantly?

Fleas are a common problem for dogs, and they can be difficult to get rid of. If you want to know what kills fleas on a dog instantly, you’ll need to know some of the best methods to use.

One of the most common ways to kill fleas on dogs is with flea drops. Flea drops are applied directly onto the skin of your dog’s neck at least monthly in order to keep fleas from hatching into adult fleas. It’s important not to skip this step because it helps prevent an infestation from starting in the first place.

In addition to applying flea drops, there are other products that you can use if your pup starts scratching or biting himself excessively after you applied the drops. One such product is Advantage II for Dogs, which kills adult fleas within 12 hours after being applied and is waterproof so it doesn’t wash off in the rain.

Another product that kills fleas on dogs instantly is Frontline Plus, which works similarly to Advantage II except that it kills both adult fleas and ticks as well as prevents them from biting your pet again.

List Of Products To Control Fleas and Mites

Fleas and mites are two of the most common pests in homes. They can be difficult to get rid of, but luckily there are a number of products on the market that can help. Here is a list of some of the best products.

Zesty Paws Allergy Immune Supplement for Dogs Lamb- with Omega 3 Wild Alaskan Salmon Fish Oil & EpiCor + Digestive Prebiotics & Probiotics - Anti Itch & Skin Hot Spots + Seasonal Allergies - 90 Chews

Zesty Paws Allergy Immune Supplement for Dogs Lamb- with Omega 3 Wild Alaskan Salmon Fish Oil & EpiCor + Digestive Prebiotics & Probiotics – Anti Itch & Skin Hot Spots + Seasonal Allergies – 90 Chews

Price : $28.97 ($0.32 / Count)

Features :

  • Boost the immune system – Zesty Paws Aller-Immune Bites are grain free soft chews that support immune, histamine, and digestive health for dogs with skin, seasonal, and environmental allergy issues.
  • Enhanced with Epicor – At 80 mg per chew, Epicor contains vitamins, protein, fiber, and antioxidants that are clinically proven to support the body’s natural immune defenses to keep your dog healthy.
  • Prebiotic & Probiotic Complex – These supplements feature a powerful Prebiotic and five strains of Probiotics for 250 million cfu of healthy bacteria that supports pet digestion and immune health.
  • Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil – Each chew contains Salmon Fish Oil to provide Omega 3 fatty acids epa & dha that provide skin and immune support for dogs with allergies that cause itching and hot spots.
  • Natural Ingredients – These chewables contain Colostrum, a pre milk that helps with allergies, immune function, and digestion, plus Apple Cider Vinegar and Organic Licorice Root for additional care.

Additional Info :

Item Dimensions 
Height4 Inches
Width3.5 Inches
Length3.5 Inches
Weight0.92 Pounds

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Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Home Spray | Flea Treatment for Dogs and Home | Plant-Based Formula | 32 Ounces

Price : $9.97

Features :

  • GENTLE PROTECTION: Vet’s Best Flea & Tick Home Spray uses certified natural ingredients to kill fleas, flea eggs, and ticks on contact.
  • PROVEN EFFECTIVE: Whether facing an active infestation or are applying for routine prevention, our spray is scientifically proven effective against pests but gentle enough to use around the whole family.
  • CERTIFIED NATURAL OILS: Each steam-distilled essential oil is selected for its potent pest-fighting properties and is 100% Certified Natural.
  • TOTAL HOME DEFENSE: Applies easily on surfaces, indoors and out, including dog bedding, crates, furniture, blankets, upholstery, carpets, outdoor surfaces, and more. Also gentle enough to be applied directly on dogs and puppies 12 weeks or older.
  • MADE IN THE USA: Our products are proudly manufactured in the USA with quality domestic and internationally sourced ingredients.

Additional Info :

Item Dimensions 
Height0.81 Inches
Width3.38 Inches
Length3.38 Inches
Weight2 Pounds

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Purina FortiFlora Probiotics for Dogs, Pro Plan Veterinary Supplements Powder Probiotic Dog Supplement – 30 ct. box

Purina FortiFlora Probiotics for Dogs, Pro Plan Veterinary Supplements Powder Probiotic Dog Supplement – 30 ct. box

Price : $30.99

Features :

  • One (1) 30-Count Box – Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets Probiotics Dog Supplement, Fortiflora Canine Nutritional Supplement
  • Probiotic recommended by veterinarians (Kynetec, Probiotic Recommendation Study, March 2019)
  • A Probiotic supplement for the dietary management of puppies and adult dogs with diarrhea
  • Contains a probiotic to promote normal intestinal microflora. Helps reduce flatulence
  • Proprietary microencapsulation process for enhanced stability

Additional Info :

Item Dimensions 
Height3.25 Inches
Width2.25 Inches
Length3 Inches
Weight0.06625 Pounds

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ANGRY ORANGE Pet Odor Eliminator for Strong Odor - Citrus Deodorizer for Strong Dog Urine or Cat Pee Smells on Carpet, Furniture & Indoor Outdoor Floors - 24 Fluid Ounces - Puppy Supplies

ANGRY ORANGE Pet Odor Eliminator for Strong Odor – Citrus Deodorizer for Strong Dog Urine or Cat Pee Smells on Carpet, Furniture & Indoor Outdoor Floors – 24 Fluid Ounces – Puppy Supplies

Price : $19.97 ($19.97 / Count)

Features :

  • Powerful – A little goes a long way with the Angry Orange pet odor eliminator for home use. It’s a carpet deodorizer that targets strong, lingering smells at the source and destroys them.
  • Citrus Scent – Derived from fresh orange peels, our carpet cleaner for pets smells like heaven and works like hell on stubborn odors.
  • Ready to Use – This bottle of urine odor eliminator can be used directly on cat pee or dog waste. No mixing required!
  • Convenient – For best results, remove pets from area, clean excess mess, shake well & spray, let dry completely. Do not apply product directly to your pet or use in a diffuser. Cats & Birds may be sensitive to concentrated levels of certain ingredients.
  • Multipurpose – This pet carpet cleaner can also be used to eliminate odors from tile, couch upholstery, garbage cans, car interiors, and more.

Additional Info :

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Frontline Plus Flea and Tick Treatment for Dogs (Large Dog, 45-88 Pounds, 3 Doses)

Frontline Plus Flea and Tick Treatment for Dogs (Large Dog, 45-88 Pounds, 3 Doses)

Price : $38.99

Features :

  • Waterproof flea and tick treatment for dogs: Frontline Plus for Dogs provides waterproof, fast-acting, long-lasting flea and tick treatment and control for your dog. This product is approved for use on dogs 45-88 lbs.
  • Break the flea life cycle with frontline: Frontline flea and tick treatment for dogs kills adult fleas plus flea eggs and larvae to stop existing infestations and prevent establishment of new infestations.
  • Kills fleas and ticks: Frontline flea and tick treatment for dogs kills fleas, flea eggs, lice, and ticks. This flea and tick treatment kills ticks, including those that may transmit Lyme disease.
  • Trusted flea and tick protection for dogs: Frontline has been trusted by veterinarians for nearly 20 years. Made with 2 tough killing ingredients, fipronil and (S)-methoprene – one to kill adult fleas and ticks and the second to kill flea eggs and larvae – this fast-acting, long-lasting protection provides flea and tick control for dogs and puppies 8 weeks and older
  • Lasting flea and tick protection: Frontline’s long-lasting formula isstored in the oil glands of the pet’s skin to give non-stop flea and tick protection for a full 30 days. Frontline flea and tick treatment for dogs works non-stop for a full 30 days. A 3-dose supply lasts for 3 months.

Additional Info :

Color45 to 88-Pound
Item Dimensions 
Height4.5 Inches
Width0.75 Inches
Length5.75 Inches
Weight0.1 Pounds

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In Conclusion,

There are many ways to tell if your dog has fleas or mites. You can compare the symptoms of each and see which best fits your dog’s symptoms. You can also go to a vet or animal clinic and have them check for fleas and mites. If you think your dog has fleas or mites, it is important to take action quickly because they can cause skin irritation, allergies, and other dangerous health issues in dogs.

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