2 week old kittens have small infestation of fleas. Dont want to use a shampoo. How can i get the fleas off of them?


  1. ♪ Seattle ♫

    Hi there…here’s the answer by “A Veterinarian” on how to treat fleas in young kittens:http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;…
    I have found that the most effective and SAFEST thing to use for kittens that age is a product called Capstar, at a dosage of 1/2 of a ‘blue’ tablet (it’s really white, but called blue b/c of the packaging…the other size is ‘green’) every 2-3 days until the kitten is old enough to use the more long-term products. (And when you do get the longer-acting products, DO NOT use the OTC one from the company that starts with an H and ends with a Z….or any of the other OTC’s for that matter….unless you want your kitten to have seizures and die. We are baffled as to why those products are even still on the market.) Capstar is available from your veterinarian…just give them a call.
    Some sprays are labelled for use for kittens over 6-8 weeks of age, but have to be applied every few days, too. Trust me…the Capstar is a much better option. There are many little tricks, but cats/kittens HATE the sprays, and will often drool for hours after application.
    Don’t bother bathing the kitten, except to remove flea ‘dirt’ (flea poop)….if you do that, don’t panic if the water turns reddish, as flea excrement is nothing more than your kitten’s blood that has been sucked out by the fleas and passed through their digestive system. Even the ‘best’ flea shampoo available through DVMs will only kill the fleas on the pet while wet with the shampoo….that’s why I don’t even sell ‘flea shampoo’ any more. It’s a waste of time, effort, and money. Once dry, new fleas will get right back on if you are not treating your house concurrently (which takes time.) Same thing for Dawn/Joy dishwashing detergent….they kill the fleas GREAT (just DON’T get it in their eyes, and don’t use it more than once, b/c it strips out the oil glands in their skin)…..but once dry, there is no residual effect. If you do decide to bathe the kitten for some reason, make sure the gums and tongue are nice and pink. If they are pale (or white!), a bath (even with just plain water) can kill the kitten.
    Your only other option is to make like a little monkey and sit there manually picking them all off one at a time.
    Please call your DVM about the Capstar. It doesn’t take many fleas to suck out enough blood to kill a little kitten like that. (Plus, they cause tapeworms.) The blue Capstar is labelled for kittens of any age, 2# of body weight or more. Your kitten is probably not quite that big yet, but I have treated hundreds of kittens less than a pound with the 1/2 dosage (saving many of their lives in the process.) It is INCREDIBLY SAFE. If you put the kitten in a box or carrier with a white towel after treatment, you will see it covered with dead/dying fleas within 30 minutes to an hour or so. I was a skeptic at first, but have been amazed at its safety and effectiveness. (We automatically give it to all my surgery patients the minute they walk in the door…because 1. we don’t want them bringing fleas into the clinic to get on other pets, and 2. it’s not exactly sterile to have a flea jump into the open abdomen incision in the middle of surgery.) It supposedly ‘lasts’ only 24 hours by label, but I have found that it really does a pretty good job for up to 2-3 days. It’s safe enough to give every single day if you have to, however. I have also found that the 1/2 pill is quite effective for up to 5-8 pounds of body weight, even though anything over 2# is ‘supposed’ to get a whole pill. Just make sure to put the other 1/2 back into the little foil ‘bubble’ and tape it closed with cellophane tape until ready to use it. The longer it’s exposed to air, etc. after being opened and cut in half, the less effective it will be.
    (No, I don’t work for the company that makes Capstar, lol. I just know for a fact that it’s a great product. I only wish they’d come up with a slow-release version of it that would last for weeks or a month. I’ve never had a single case of toxicity….nor seen a single side effect.)
    I’m a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine with 20 years exp in private practice (27 total years in the profession.)

  2. sans_sou

    you can use an anti-tick powder that can be got at any good petstore. they are harmless even when swallowed by the kitten, but please dust the kittens properly and brush off the excess. dont use a shampoo, as kittens are very delicate.
    all the best. cheerio

  3. noice

    You have to be really careful when using any insecticide with kittens as most are too strong and can have serious side affects.
    Some white vinegar with a little backing soda in a stray bottle will help with the fleas and will not harm the kitten.

  4. s w

    flea collars are worthless. using anything at this age is not a good idea. Since its a small infestation, id recommend not doing anything for two more weeks. at that time, get some special flea shampoo from the VET, not that over the counter crap. be very careful not to get in eyes or nose…that can cause death. wait two weeks tho.

  5. Kristen J

    Dawn dish soap works the best for kittens too young for flea medication. The only thing with Dawn is that it needs to be rinsed extremely well because it can cause major skin irritation if there is any residue left on the kitten. Once you bathe the kitten, dry her off and place her wrapped in a blanket on a heating pad. You will have to rebathe the kitten after a day or two because more flea eggs will hatch.

  6. dehbee

    flea bath. or those sprays you spray on your pet…..im not sure if flea collars work.

  7. Elvismom

    Get a flea comb. It’s a fine toothed comb that will pick out even the smallest fleas. You have to thoroughly comb the entire body, rinse the fleas out of the comb and down the drain, and keep combing. Your kitten is too young to use any pesticides on.

  8. lovemyca

    Two years ago someone brought me a two week old kitten and she had fleas. Much to young for chemicals at that age. At two weeks old, kittens can’t hold their own body heat, so you need to keep them bundled to keep them warm. Hubby and I took turns holding her, like a baby, wrapped in a fluffy white bath towel. The fleas don’t stay on a cat after they feed, so, they would drop off onto the towel. Every couple of hours, we would unwrap her and transfer her to a new towel, and take the old one, with the fleas on it, out back and spray those nasties dead.
    Be sure to wash the towel before you reuse it on the kitten. She was no bigger than a minute, and we got 15 fleas off of her. Hope this helps.

  9. rblanken

    TOO YOUNG FOR FLEA SHAMPOO! please don’t use it ! it can make them very sick!!! Dawn dish soap(original only). it will kill fleas and not harm young kittens and puppies as long as you don’t get it in their eyes! us it once a week until they are all gone, or old enough for advantage! i have used this many times on my mothers less, and very young babies!! please try this instead of flea shampoo or other flea products!!!!

  10. caa_1985

    you can pick them off that does work but where are your kittens at outside? also go see an older vet he can tell you what to do good luck
    We use to pick the fleas off but our cats were all inside if its outside there is nothing you can do to keep them away if it is inside pick them off and them spray your house with flea sprays to get rid of the infestitation…

  11. Zelda Hunter

    Dawn dishwashing liquid works nicely, but you should also wash their bedding frequently and run it through a hot dryer. You can carefully comb fleas out of their hair with a “nit” comb, and carefully comb and bathe their mommy, the queen. No pesticides or flea meds, or they could die. I usually keep a sticky lint roller next to me when I comb out the kittens, so I can quickly stick fleas to the paper, cut them in two with the comb before they can wiggle free, then dispose of them in a Ziploc bag. Also, you should vacuum all the carpeting in the house every day and dispose of the vacuum bag every day in another Ziploc bag, as soon as you are finished so they don’t escape. I know it’s expensive, but if will be much worse if you don’t get control of the fleas now.

  12. MsDolitt

    I am actually surprised that no one has mentioned treating mom cat with advantage. Dawn dishwashing soap works great at killing fleas. I would suggest giving kitty a bath with warm water and dawn dishwashing soap. Make sure to start at the kitties head as the fleas will all try to jump there if you start anywhere else. Work from the head down the body lathering the dawn into the babies fur. Leave the dawn on for a minute or two and then thoroughly rinse. Just to make sure you have all the soap out of kitties fur you can do a final rinse with a diluted vinegar and water solution. Vinegar cuts the soap residue. Once you are done bathing the kitten it is important to keep him or her warm.
    When I have had kittens I use a small portable electric space heater and put my babies in a dog crate for my dogs with the heater pointed in. Don’t let the heater heat the baby up too much just enough to keep him/her warm during the drying process.
    Also if you treat mom with advantage it will prevent fleas from mom re infesting the kitten and since advantage is shed in the mom cats dander it can also help treat the fleas on the baby without directly using it on the kitten. Good luck. Fleas are nasty critters and by far I have found advantage the most effective way of treating for them. Once the baby is 6-8 weeks old it is safe to does him/her with advantage monthly as well.

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