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The Regional Guide to Fleas and Ticks on Cats

Fleas and ticks on cats aren’t one size fits all. We surveyed pros across the US to get info on regional pests and specific cat flea and tick treatments for your area.

A brown cat itching his face.
A brown cat itching his face. Photography by Sitikka/Thinkstock.
Last Updated on May 10, 2018 by

When fleas or ticks bite your kitty, she becomes miserable with the itching, skin irritation and other discomforts from the parasites. We pet parents aren’t happy either, as the pests can spread and infest our other pets and throughout the house. We’ve compiled local guides to fleas and ticks on cats, as well as a few general pointers:

First off, is there truly a flea and tick season?

A black and white tuxedo cat on a windowsill.
Keeping your cat indoors greatly reduces his exposure to fleas and ticks. Photography ©tingfen | iStock / Getty Images Plus.

Different regions of the United States, with their varying climates, may have a particular season for fleas and/or ticks, to a degree. But unlike Christmas and Halloween, fleas and ticks aren’t necessarily seasonal, says Dr. Michelle Matusicky, D.V.M., assistant professor — practice at The Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

“It is a common misconception that fleas and ticks have a season,” Matusicky says. “They have a life cycle that is constantly replicating.

“Sure, it is more common for a flea infestation to begin in the spring or summer seasons, but it can take months to get rid of completely,” she says. “If not properly cleared, they can set up in your home and live quite comfortably throughout the winter months.”

What cats are at risk for fleas and ticks?

Ticks and fleas appear all over the United States, but each region of the United States has some differences. Fleas come in more than 1,000 species, but the types of fleas that bite cats and dogs are fairly uniform. Ticks come in several distinctive varieties.

As always, talk to your veterinarian about using topical preventative flea and tick treatments. Cat parents can also greatly reduce the chances of kitty encountering fleas and ticks by keeping cats inside, which all veterinarians we interviewed recommend.

Preventing fleas and ticks on cats:

For specific, regional information about fleas and ticks in your area, check out our guides below:

  1. Northwest Guide to Fleas and Ticks on Cats
  2. Southwest Guide to Fleas and Ticks on Cats 
  3. Midwest Guide to Fleas and Ticks on Cats
  4. Southeast Guide to Fleas and Ticks on Cats
  5. Northeast Guide to Fleas and Ticks on Cats

Thumbnail: Photography by Sitikka/Thinkstock. 

It’s Flea and Tick Week sponsored by Andis on Stay tuned for more tips on how to keep your cat and household safe from fleas and ticks!

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