Frontline FAQ's

Frontline-FAQ

How often can my pet get wet/swim?

If pets are bathed or go swimming regularly, then monthly applications are recommended all year round. If pets are bathed or go swimming very frequently (more than once per week), then FRONTLINE Spot On may not be fully effective. This is because the product acts topically, by direct contact with the parasite with the parasite, relying on the natural oils of your pets skin to keep the product active.

I can see parasites in my house, why hasn’t the treatment worked in my home?

The adult fleas that are killed by the spot on used on your pet are only part of the problem. These fleas will already have laid eggs that have fallen into the home, resulting in a home infestation. It is therefore essential to treat the problem in the home (if it is evident that people are getting bitten themselves or if there have been any breaks in treatment) as 95 per cent of the flea lifecycle is eggs, larvae and pupae, and only five per cent is the adult stage which feeds on your pets. If left untreated, an adult flea can lay up to 50 eggs a day. These eggs continuously fall off the animal wherever it goes, before hatching and jumping onto new hosts when they sense body heat, vibration and carbon dioxide. Frequent vacuuming and washing pet bedding above 60 degrees will help to reduce the number of eggs, pupae and larvae in the environment. If you have any concerns, please contact our technical advice team at ukcompanionanimal@merial.com, or your veterinary surgeon.

Why am I seeing even more fleas on my pet after applying FRONTLINE?

The active ingredient in FRONTLINE (fipronil) kills fleas by affecting their nervous system, making them hyperactive before dying. These dying fleas often rise to the top of your pet's haircoat, so the presence of visible fleas after treating your pet is a sign that the product is working.

It is also important to remember that the majority of the flea population is in the environment. If you are still seeing a large number of fleas a few days after starting treatment it is possible that there is an infestation somewhere in the home. It can take up to 3 months to fully resolve a flea infestation (or even longer in some cases)- see “What is the best way to resolve a home infestation?” for advice on eradicating a flea problem as quickly as possible. If you have any concerns, please contact our technical advice team at ukcompanionanimal@merial.com, or your veterinary surgeon.

Why am I still seeing flea droppings in my pet’s coat after treatment?

If you still see fleas or flea droppings on your cat or dog after treating them, it would be natural to think that the flea treatment isn’t working. Like many things in life, it’s not as simple as that! Modern flea treatments, such as FRONTLINE, don't work by stopping fleas from jumping on your pet- they are effective at killing newly arriving fleas within 24 hours.

The flea life cycle is such that the fleas that are seen on your pet are only a small proportion of the total flea population. 95% of the problem exists in the pet's environment as flea eggs, larvae and pupae (cocoons). New fleas can jump on your pet at any time from an infested environment. That is why it is normal to see some fleas on a treated pet. Each new flea takes up to 24 hours to kill. Because it's very hard to tell fleas apart, it's easy to see why some people think that the product isn't working when actually it is continuing to kill fleas – you are simply seeing different fleas each time that will be killed soon. It can take up to 3 months to fully resolve a flea infestation (or even longer in some cases)- see “What is the best way to resolve a home infestation?” for advice on resolving a flea problem as quickly as possible.

New fleas that jump onto a pet will have consumed a blood meal and defecated within 5-10 minutes of landing on your pet. Fipronil, the active ingredient in FRONTLINE, will also make the flea become hyperactive before death. Therefore, you should still expect to see flea droppings and lively (dying) fleas whilst treatment is being used after your pet has been exposed to a flea infested area, more so during the warmer months when there is generally a higher flea burden outdoors. If you have any concerns, please contact our technical advice team at ukcompanionanimal@merial.com, or your veterinary surgeon.

Why am I still seeing live fleas after treatment?

If you still see fleas on your cat or dog after treating them, it would be natural to think that the flea treatment isn’t working. Like many things in life, it's not as simple as that! There is no product that can repel fleas and so it is normal to continue to see fleas on your pet after treatment as new fleas hatch out and jump on from the environment, but don’t worry these will be killed within 24 hours of jumping onto your treated pet.

The flea life cycle is such that the fleas that are seen on your pet are only a small proportion of the total flea population. 95% of the problem exists in the pet's environment as flea eggs, larvae and pupae (cocoons). New fleas can jump on your pet at any time from an infested environment. That is why it is normal to see some fleas on a treated pet. Each new flea takes up to 24 hours to kill. Because it's very hard to tell fleas apart, it's easy to see why some people think that the product isn't working when actually it is continuing to kill fleas – you are simply seeing different fleas each time that will be killed within 24 hours of jumping onto the treated pet. It can take up to 3 months to fully resolve a flea infestation (or even longer in some cases), see “What is the best way to resolve a home infestation?” for advice on resolving a flea problem as quickly as possible. If you have any concerns, please contact our technical advice team at ukcompanionanimal@merial.com, or your veterinary surgeon.

I never used to see fleas on my pets when using FRONTLINE and now I am seeing some. Is this because the product has become less effective?

I never used to see fleas on my pets when using FRONTLINE and now I am seeing some. Is this because the product has become less effective? No, it is normal for parasite populations outdoors to fluctuate. This is because flea numbers in the outdoor environment depend on temperature, humidity, number of hosts (such as wildlife and cats) and vegetation cover. If any of these change from one year to the next, you can see an explosion in parasite numbers so that they suddenly become noticeable on your pets (or, alternatively, decrease in number). If you have any concerns, please contact our technical advice team at ukcompanionanimal@merial.com, or your veterinary surgeon.

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