Often we are asked about flea prevention and cerebellar hypoplasia and if flea prevention treatments are safe to use on your CH pet and we answer with the same every time — YES, but ALWAYS consult your veterinarian about your concerns and which product is right for your pet!

Lots of “CH” pet parents post on cerebellar forums and pages lamenting about certain prevention and products may have harmed or proved fatal for their special pet which is frustrating because applying prevention to a cerebellar hypoplasia pet is not the lethal combination that people make it out to be!

In both humans AND animals anything (medication or otherwise) can have side effects or be potentially fatal (this can also be said for products that are coined as “green” or natural/holistic) so we always stress to do your homework and have an open dialog with your veterinarian!

Anytime a person (or animal) has any kind of reaction while on a certain medication the F.D.A is required to list this on their potential adverse reactions list which could range from mild reactions to potentially fatal. Just because there is an “adverse reaction” listed for that particular medication does NOT mean that it automatically unfit for your special baby!

Isoxazoline, Prevention & Pets

What should I know?

What products are in the isoxazoline class?

What should I do if my pet has an adverse drug event while using an isoxazoline product?


  1. An adult flea that jumps on your pet will begin to feed on your pet’s blood immediately and excrete flea dirt or digested blood so the flea larvae can feed on the flea dirt later.
  2. Adult male and female flea mate on the host (your dog or cat).
  3. Each adult female will lay up to 50 eggs per day 1-2 days after it gets on your pet.
  4. The flea eggs and flea dirt on your pet, will drop off of your pet on to your carpet, sofa and bedding.
  5. In 2 -5 days, the Larvae will hatch from the eggs and the larvae develops by feeding on the flea dirt and organic debris. Larvae development time is between 5-21 days depending on the environment and nutrition.
  6. The larvae will develop into a pupae by making a cocoon.
  7. Pupae development takes about 8-13 days, but can take up to 30 weeks in poor conditions.
  8. New adults emerge and are waiting for a new warm-blooded host to feed on.

Diseases Caused by Fleas


Fleas look like a small black sesame seed. It moves quickly between your pet’s coat. The best way to see fleas on your pet is to run your hands against the grain of the coat. You will see the flea moving very quickly trying to escape. You may also see flea dirt (digested blood meal) which looks like black pepper. The larvae and pupae are difficult to see because it is small and blends into the environment.

Preventing Fleas

Preventing fleas is much easier that treating fleas so it is best to prevent your pets from getting fleas. The best way to prevent fleas is to use a product that has efficacy against all stages of the flea life cycle. While there are many flea prevention products in the market, Simparica and Nexgard are very effective monthly flea prevention.

Flea Treatment for Dogs and Cats

If your pet is infested with fleas, a comprehensive elimination program should be implemented.

Health Risks for People

The common flea of the dog is Ctenocephalidies felis. This flea can cause a number of diseases which can be transmitted to people. Bartonella henselae causes cat scratch disease, Rickettsia typhus causes flea borne typhus, Dipylidium caninum causes tapeworms to name a few. Dogs and cats can acquire rodent fleas. When these fleas leave the host and bite humans, flea bites can cause bubonic plaque (Yersenia pestis).

What Prevention does “President Bifford” utilize?

With the supervision of his veterinarian (shout out to Dr. Courtney Cameron at Niles Veterinary Clinic for loving the “handicats”) Bifford gets Advantage Multi (a topical treatment that is applied every 30 days that covers fleas, intestinal parasites, ear mites & heartworms) and Bart has on the Seresto collar (the collar is good for 8 months and covers fleas & ticks and according to the Bayer Pharmaceutical representative they are “break away” collars if need be but I cannot confirm nor deny that claim at this point) and both have had zero issues or complications and are well protected against fleas (despite them being strictly indoor cats they can STILL get fleas either from a flea jumping into a screen door or window or you bringing a flea in on the bottom of your pant leg or shoe!).

The one thing we ALWAYS stress is to NEVER trust or use “over-the-counter” flea prevention as they are not protected by the F.D.A nor are they regulated for your pet’s safety! Furthermore if your pet has a reaction to an “OTC” product your veterinarian may struggle to get them the best possible care because often times we do not know ALL of the ingredients that go into those store-bought preventions (or how much goes into them) so always PLAY IT SAFE and talk to your veterinarian about the prevention best suited for your pet and purchase it from your veterinarian’s office!

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