There’s No Fleas On My Dogs!

There’s No Fleas On My Dogs!

 

At times, I get a little tired of repeating the following adage:

“Healthy dogs aren’t good hosts for parasites.”

Every day, I get questions like these from our readers:

  • “What should I give my dog to avoid heartworm?”
  • “What can I give my dog so he doesn’t get worms?”
  • “What do you do to prevent fleas on your dogs?” 

Every day, my answer to all of the above is, you guessed it, 

“Healthy dogs aren’t good hosts for parasites.”

Before we go into the specifics of why that might be true, I’m going to share a story with you. But first, a little introduction to my dogs might be in order.

Raise Them Right

I show Labrador Retrievers and right now I have six of them. I’ve been breeding Labradors for about 21 years now. But I don’t breed all that often because my puppies must be raised the way I would raise them here.

That means they eat only fresh, whole foods, they aren’t vaccinated for anything not required by law ... and remember, there are always exemptions.

I also never use chemicals and toxins on them. By that I mean ...

  • Heartworm meds
  • Dewormers
  • Flea and tick meds
  • Pharmaceutical drugs
  • Chemicals in and around the home

And they don't go to conventional vets – unless absolutely necessary in an emergency. Homeopathy rules in this house!

You may think that by not giving my puppies dewormers in the last 15 years that I’ve got a real mess on my hands.

Well, I don’t. In fact, I’ve never had a puppy with a positive fecal. We are worm free and loving it here at Fallriver! We are also flea free.

In 15 years, I have never had one flea on one of my dogs! And I live in the country where the dogs and I are in the woods, the fields and on the beach every day.

But my friends who raise their dogs the conventional way, meaning ...

  • Lots of vaccines
  • Lots of chemicals
  • Feeding a processed food diet

... These friends don’t seem to enjoy the same luxury. When they come to visit me, their dogs leave wriggly worm-infested poops behind. I just pick it up and don’t worry about it.

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Why I Don't Worry About Fleas And Parasites

Worms aren't a problem for my dogs because (say it with me) ...

 “Healthy dogs aren’t good hosts for parasites.”

I'll tell you a little true story that will prove my point. You’ll get a kick out of this.

Two years ago, I traveled to a dog show with a friend who raises her Labradors conventionally. We made the nearly 10 hour drive in my van and stayed at the show for 2 days.

While we were there, we exercised the dogs in a nice sand ring that was used for horses. It was a great way to let them off-leash for some playtime during the show.

We won some ribbons, chatted with friends, and piled back in my van to drive the 10 hours home.

Nothing out of the ordinary for a show trip.

About 3 days later, my friend called me up with a warning. She said that she noticed that the 3 dogs she brought to the show were covered in fleas. The fleas were even crawling up her son’s legs!

She told me she had to put them all on Frontline. And she recommended I do the same. I thanked her and hung up.

Hitchhiking Fleas, Now What?

So, I decided I should take a look at my own dogs too – although I didn’t notice anybody scratching. I laid them on their backs to see their tummies and didn’t see anything.

I’d like to say that I was more diligent than that, but I’ve learned that I can be pretty complacent with these things. Because you see, there weren’t any fleas on my dogs.

Well, I couldn’t see any fleas anyway. They might have had one or two, but if they did, they didn’t seem to notice.

I’d like to say that I then vacuumed out my van and diligently looked for fleas there. But meh, I took the dogs for a walk instead. That seemed like more fun than cleaning the van.

And it turns out it wasn’t necessary because my dogs remained flea-free in the days and weeks after that.

So let’s summarize these events, for those following along at home.

  1. Six dogs go to a dog show in one van (sounds like the beginning of a great joke).
  2. Three dogs are vaccinated, routinely given drugs and fed a processed diet. Three dogs are not.
  3. Care to guess which three dogs came home with fleas and which three didn’t?

Come on, I know you’re thinking it too. Isn’t it crazy to ...

  • Give our dogs vaccines full of aluminum and mercury.
  • Feed them neurotoxins that kill the bugs in and on him ... ridiculously believing they kill bugs but aren't harmful for our dogs.
  • Feed processed food in a bag. Just like all fast foods come in a bag.

… And say “there, I’ve made my dog healthy!”

Stop The Insanity!

What if instead of drugs, we had a little faith in the immune system and worked to create health through ...

  • A good, nutritious diet
  • Giving immune-boosting supplements when needed
  • And by refraining from toxins and drugs

Isn’t it just common sense that our dogs would be better able to handle a couple of fleas?

Ever see a rotten squirrel carcass at the side of the road? Dead is about as unhealthy as a squirrel could be.

And on that dead little carcass, you’ll see an orgy of pests if you look close enough. Just don’t let your neighbors see you do this though … I’ve learned they don’t like that.

Now compare that dead squirrel to healthy dogs. No pests. Nothing. Zip, zero, zilch.

So if your dog has enough fleas or ticks or heartworms or intestinal worms that it’s noticeable to him or you ... can you honestly say he’s healthy?

I wouldn’t. I would say he’s somewhere in between a healthy dog and a dead squirrel…and that’s probably not a good place to be.

Maybe we need to adjust our definition of healthy. To me, health is much more than just the absence of disease. Believing this means you provide natural health care that's as nice to your dogs as it is to mine.

Once you understand what health really is, then the next time you see this tired old adage it'll make more sense.

And then you can say it along with me: 

“Healthy dogs aren’t good hosts for parasites!”

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