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Flea epidemic affects Sangamon County

Flea epidemic hit Sangamon county. (WICS)

Fleas have become an epidemic throughout Sangamon County, according to local veterinarians. This summer the White Oaks West Animal Hospital has seen double the amount of flea cases compared to last year.

“Usually the summer and into the fall are those peak seasons where we see those flea infestations, but it’s been especially prevalent this year,” said Dr. Brittany Hasselberg, with White Oaks West Animal Hospital.

According to Hasselberg, the flea epidemic is due to the mild winter Illinois experienced this year. The temperatures weren’t cold enough in March and April to keep insects, like fleas, away.

Fleas can cause your pet to be uncomfortable, but they can also be deadly.

“I’ve had a couple of cat cases, they actually had such a bad flea bite infestation that they were anemic. They had to have transfusions for that, so it can be life threatening,” explained Hasselberg.

Hasselberg said pets can also be allergic to flea bites, which could result in anaphylactic shock.

There are many preventative methods to keep dogs safe from fleas. These vary from topical to oral. There is also a flea collar.

However, not all flea medications are equal and every animal reacts differently to treatments, said Hasselberg. She advises pet owners to talk with their local veterinarian about the options available for flea prevention.

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