Often, a kitten will have some sort of parasite, whether it is fleas, worms, ear mites or ringworm. It’s imperative to rid the kitten of these invaders as they can cause illness or even death in a small kitten if left untreated. When treating parasites, never use over-the-counter treatments. Always buy them from a vet.
To treat fleas, it is safe to use a very small amount of kitten strength Advantage, Frontline or Revolution drops, as long as you have your vet’s consent to do so! You will need to treat the kitten once a month. Be sure that you obtain the spot on flea treatment from your vet, and not over the internet or over-the-counter. After applying the drop/s, use your thumb to spread it along the kittens back in a straight line, to the tail. This helps to spread the flea treatment over the whole kitten’s body. Wash your hands thoroughly afterwards. Dosages are as follows:
- Birth to one week: one drop (two drops if flea infestation is heavy)
- One to two weeks: two drops
- Two to four weeks: 3 drops
- Four to six weeks: 4 drops
- Six weeks on: follow directions on pack
If you don’t want to use flea treatments, you can lather some vet-approved kitten shampoo onto his fur and use a very fine flea comb to comb out the fleas. The shampoo immobilizes the fleas, making it easier for them to be combed out. Be careful that the kitten doesn’t become chilled during this process. After you have combed all the fleas out, rinse off the shampoo under warm water. Use the hairdryer or warm towel process discussed earlier, and don’t get water in the kitten’s ears or eyes.
Symptoms of worms in a kitten include diarrhea, pot-bellied appearance, weight loss or failure to gain weight, and a general loss of condition. Always obtain worming medication for your kitten from a vet.
If the kitten has Tapeworm, you may notice the segments, which look like miniature grains of rice, around the kitten’s bottom, on his bedding or on his fur. You must wash the kitten’s box and all his bedding well after you’ve treated him so that the tapeworm does not re-occur. You need to treat the kitten with a vet-approved medication, for the segments you see tell you the larger host worm is alive and living in the kitten’s digestive system.
You may notice that the kitten has vomited or eliminated what looks like a pile of spaghetti. These are roundworms and your kitten needs intervention and the proper medication from your vet. Sometimes these infestations are severe and require several rounds of medication.
Ear Mites And Ringworm
To treat ear mites and ringworm, always obtain treatment for your kitten from a vet. Be cautious with ringworm as it is highly contagious both to you and other pets. It may take quite a while to clear up and your kitten needs to be isolated so the other animals do not catch this.