Treat Fleas in Young Kittens

How to Treat Fleas in Young Kittens and Nursing Mothers

Fleas are annoying to humans and animals, and can actually be dangerous for very young kittens. While you can safely use flea medications on nursing mothers, manual removal is usually necessary for newborn kittens. Slightly older kittens may be able to handle some medication or a flea brush, but make sure to consult your vet first to avoid harming your kittens.

Removing Fleas

     1    Use flea medication on the mother only. Topical flea medications are poisons that kill fleas when absorbed through your pet’s skin. Usually, you would apply a topical medication between a cat’s shoulder blades or on the back of the neck. Within a certain time frame, the medication would begin to kill fleas. These medications are usually safe to use on nursing 01. mothers and should not affect your kittens. However, they can be very dangerous to young cats. Only use topical medications to treat fleas on the mother.[1]

Make sure to talk to your vet about a safe medication for a nursing mother. While many medications, such as Frontline Plus, are safe to use on nursing mothers, other brands may carry risks.
It may be necessary to separate the mother and kittens for a set time after administering the medication. Talk to your vet beforehand.

2  Bathe newborns in dish soap to remove fleas. Harsh chemicals are not safe to use on young kittens, especially newborns. Instead, you can gently bathe newborns using a dish soap. Choose a mild dish soap that does not have antibacterial properties.[2]

Fill a sink with warm water and soap. Take your kitten and immerse it to its neck in the water. Use a cloth to gently wet the kitten’s face, but make sure to stay away from the eyes.[3]

Remove the kitten from the water and massage the soap into its skin. Then, submerge the kitten up to its neck again to rinse it.

Make sure to dry your kitten with a warm towel when you’re done. You should also keep the kitten in a warm environment until it’s completely warm.

3  Remove fleas manually. After a bath, you should strive to remove fleas manually when you see them. Fleas may run to the kitten’s head or neck during the bathing process, so remove these fleas with tweezers or your fingers while drying your kitten. Drop the fleas into a cup of hot water to kill them after removing them from your kitten.[4]

4  Ask your vet about safe products for older kittens. Kittens older than four weeks may be able to take oral medications to treat fleas. This can be helpful as such medications can kill fleas in several stages of their lifespan. However, you should never administer medication to a kitten without consulting your vet first.[5] Kittens are more fragile than adult cats and even older kittens may react poorly to medication.[6]

Oral medications are usually given once a day to kill fleas and start to work fairly quickly.

Some kittens older than six weeks may be able to tolerate topical medications once a month. However, such medications can be very dangerous if your kitten is not healthy enough to tolerate them so talk to your vet before administering such medications.

5 Comb kittens frequently with a flea comb. A flea comb can be an effective tool to treat fleas in young kittens, especially if your kittens are still too young for medication. Comb the the kittens each day with a flea comb. Remove fleas you see with your fingers or tweezers. Set these fleas aside in a bowl of hot water to kill them.[7]

Talk to a vet first to make sure you choose a healthy, safe flea comb for your kittens.

Credit: wikihow