Fleas are a serious and potentially dangerous outdoor pest. These parasites bite and drink blood from both human and animal hosts, sometimes transmitting deadly bacteria that can lead to devastating illnesses.
While there are several flea-repellent methods and remedies you can use to help control fleas and protect your family and pets, it can be tricky to get rid of fleas entirely from around your property.
Because fleas are so common, and because they may be more common in some regions than others, it’s important to have a good game plan for flea protection and control. This is especially true when it comes to protecting your pets.
Both dogs and cats can be victims of flea bites, especially if they are unprotected with flea medications or flea collars. However, cats tend to be most at risk for flea infestations and flea bites, especially outdoor cats who spend the majority of their time in areas where wild animals may roam and transmit fleas.
In today’s article, we are going to talk about the best cat flea shampoo to help protect your cat. But before we begin, let’s first take a moment to talk about fleas.
Let’s get started!
But First, Let’s Talk About Fleas
Unprotected cats are commonly prone to suffering from fleas and flea bites.
Fleas are small, parasitic insects that live in grassy areas like woodlands, fields, and backyards. They have no wings and thus they cannot fly, but these pests can jump. In fact, fleas can jump up to 200 times their body size, which is about 13 inches.
Fleas also contain small barbs on their legs that help them cling to hosts, and they survive on blood hosts that include mammals like humans, wild animals, and pets like cats and dogs.
There are over 2,000 different species of fleas across the world, and they are problematic in nearly every continent except for Antarctica.
Though not all fleas are deadly, some can be. In the United States, fleas are known to carry some serious diseases that they can spread to both people and pets.
The most common flea in the United States is known as the “cat flea”, or the Ctenocephalides felis. The cat flea, in spite of its name, can be problematic for a variety of animals and sometimes even people.
But where do fleas come from?
Most cats will pick up fleas while outdoors, but outdoor cats are not the only cats at risk for fleas and fleabites. Even indoor cats can be at risk for fleas, especially if other pets bring fleas indoors, or if you bring our cat outdoors to play in the yard or go on a walk. It takes only a moment to pick up a flea, and a single pregnant flea can lead to an entire infestation on your cat or inside your home.
Fleas often find their way into your yard or property after being brought there by wild animals. Wild animal hosts for fleas include a number of animals like raccoons, deer, rabbits, mice, squirrels, rats, and more.
This means that even if you are vigilant and take care to keep your yard flea-free, you can never be certain that fleas are not on your property from one moment to the next.
If a cat picks up fleas, they could potentially bring them into your home and transmit them to other pets in the house and even to you or your loved ones.
Though fleas are incredibly small, they can have a big impact on the health of our furry family members and even on us.
Keep reading more to learn about the dangers of fleas to people and pets.
The Dangers Of Fleas For Cats, Dogs, And Even People
Unprotected cats can transmit fleas to people and other pets in the home.
As we just mentioned, fleas are a serious problem in not only the United States but also the world. Not only are fleas serious pests, but they are also quite dangerous. Fleas can carry and transmit a number of deadly diseases to both people and pets, including diseases like Murine Typhus, Tularemia, Bubonic Plague, and Tungiasis.
Of these diseases, the most common disease transmitted by fleas to cats in the United States is Murine Typhus.
Murine Typhus is caused due to Rickettsia typhi, a bacteria that is carried by infected wild animals, and even feral cats. Wild animals that can carry Rickettsia typhi tend to include animals like rats, opossums, raccoons, and other common wild animals that live in both suburban and urban areas.
Cat typhus, also known as feline panleukopenia, has a wide variety of symptoms that can range from mild to severe. Symptoms can take up to seven days to present themselves in your cat, and they include nausea, diarrhea, shivering, fever, vomiting, lethargy, and loss of appetite.
Typhus can be deadly in cats, but it is also treatable if you recognize the symptoms quickly. Most importantly, typhus is preventable when you utilize the tools and medications provided by your veterinarian, as well as other forms of pest control to repel and manage fleas in the area.
With that in mind, it’s time to talk about cat flea shampoo.
What Is Cat Flea Shampoo And Does It Really Work?
Cat shampoos can work to prevent and protect your cat from fleas when used properly.
Cat flea shampoo can be somewhat controversial, depending on who you speak with. While many people rave about cat flea shampoo products, not everyone agrees that cat flea shampoos are the best forms of flea prevention or protection for cats.
With that being said, there are some cat flea shampoo products that have proven effective against fleas and ticks, and some shampoos can even provide a longer-lasting solution to flea prevention than typical pet shampoos.
Cat flea shampoo products work most often by utilizing chemical ingredients designed to kill fleas and ticks on contact. Many of these types of cat flea shampoo products can take up to 48 hours to work, but they are often made to kill fleas, eggs, and nymphs, as well as other pests like lice.
Some cat flea shampoo products work only to kill fleas on contact once your cat has already contracted fleas. Other cat flea shampoo products can help to protect your cat from fleas for up to 28 days after application.
We should note here that most cat flea shampoo products contain chemical ingredients like insecticides, which can have adverse side effects on your cat. If you’re concerned about using a cat flea shampoo that contains insecticide chemicals, you can try using natural cat flea shampoo products that work using special oils and other natural, plant-based ingredients.
However, some natural cat flea shampoo products may not be as effective as chemical cat flea shampoo products, and it’s important to do your research before deciding which option is best for you and your cat.
Furthermore, sensitive cats can still have an adverse reaction to natural products as well. If you’re not sure about the best type of flea prevention and protection for your cat, it’s best to speak with a trusted veterinarian.
However, if you have decided that cat flea shampoo is the best option for you and your furry friend, we have listed several of our top-rated products below.
Take a look.
The Best Cat Flea Shampoo, According To Experts
It should be noted that not all cat shampoos for fleas are safe for kittens under the age of 12 weeks.
Remember, not all cat flea shampoo products are designed to work equally. Furthermore, many cat flea shampoo products work using chemical ingredients.
When you are looking for a cat flea shampoo for your unique pet, be sure to read the ingredients and consider the unique sensitivities of your cat.
Also, be aware that not all cat flea shampoo products work to provide long-term protection from fleas and ticks. When deciding which product you want to use to protect your pet, it’s important to consider your cat’s lifestyle, how often your cat is outside, and whether or not your cat is sensitive to certain ingredients.
Last, be sure to speak with your veterinarian about other forms of flea and tick protection and control, especially if you live in a region that is known for its prevalence of fleas and ticks.
Now, without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the best cat flea shampoo products according to owners and experts.
Veterinary Formula Flea and Tick Shampoo For Cats
First on our list of best cat flea shampoo is the Veterinary Formula Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs and Cats. This product works using a pyrethrum combination to kill fleas. Pyrethrin is a common insecticide used in pest control products that are proven to kill fleas and ticks on contact.
The product also uses other combinations of chemicals and ingredients to protect your cat from fleas while also exfoliating and cleansing your cat’s skin and fur.
While this product does contain a formula that has insecticides, it is also free of soap and parabens that can harm your cat’s skin and coat. It is made with gentle ingredients and cleansers to be as gentle on your pet’s skin as possible.
If you have multiple pets in the household that need protection from fleas, you’re in luck. This flea shampoo is not only veterinary formulated by professionals to protect your pets from fleas, but it works on cats, dogs, ferrets, and horses.
Do not use this cat flea shampoo on kittens under the age of 12 weeks old.
Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo
Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo is another product you can use on both dogs and cats. It works by killing fleas, ticks, and lice on contact and contains the active ingredient pyrethrins. The product is designed to be used on adult pets and should not be used on kittens or puppies under the age of 12 weeks.
We like that this cat flea shampoo is specially designed for cats and other pets with sensitive skin. It comes in a formula that is made with oatmeal, lanolin, and aloe to help soothe skin, alleviate itchiness from flea and tick bites, and help kill these pests on contact.
The shampoo kills these pests at all stages of their lives and even includes an insect growth regulator to kill fleas in all their stages of development. When used properly, this cat flea shampoo can protect cats and dogs from fleas for up to 28 days.
Vet’s Best Flea & Tick Shampoo For Cats
Vet’s Best Flea And Tick Shampoo for cats is a naturally formulated cat flea shampoo that works using plant-based ingredients to kill fleas and ticks in all their life stages. Like most flea and tick shampoo for cats, this product is not to be used on kittens under the age of 12 weeks.
We like that this cat flea shampoo is specifically for cats, and it works on their unique skin and coat to protect them from these parasitic and disease-transmitting pests.
While essential oils can be toxic for cats, this formula works using a special blend of oils in a recipe that is safe for cats. The ingredients include certified natural oils like clove oil and cottonseed oil.
This cat flea shampoo not only kills fleas and ticks on contact but also cleans and deodorizes your cat. We also like that this cat flea shampoo contains a calming scent that can help relax your cat a well.
Advantage Flea and Tick Treatment
Advantage Flea and Tick Treatment is a popular cat flea shampoo for cats and kittens over the age of 12 weeks. Again, this cat flea shampoo works using a small dose of insecticide pyrethrins to kill fleas and ticks in their different life stages.
The product is not specified as use-alone flea protection for cats. Instead, it should be used as part of a complete regimen for flea and tick protection for your pet.
Along with using a quality cat flea shampoo, experts recommend using other flea repellents to protect your cat or kittens including flea collars, flea ointments, chews, or prescription flea and tick control provided by your veterinarian.
Zodiac Flea and Tick Shampoo
Zodiac Flea and Tick Shampoo is a cat flea shampoo that works for both cats and dogs. It works against fleas and ticks, killing them on contact. The active ingredients include pyrethrins and other ingredients that help protect your pets from these parasitic pests.
While some cat flea shampoo products can be harsh on your cat’s skin and coat, this product includes coconut conditioners to help soothe itchy skin and ensure your cat’s coat is hydrated and healthy.
This shampoo has a pleasant scent and is made to be used on pets 12 weeks and older.
Sentry PurrScriptions Flea and Tick Shampoo For Cats
Last we have a cat flea shampoo specially designed for cats that use pyrethrins with a combination of coconut conditioners and other ingredients. This cat flea shampoo can help kill fleas and ticks on contact while also adding “luster and groomability”, as the bottle states.
This cat flea shampoo product works on fleas, ticks, and lice in different life stages. It comes in a coconut berry scent and not only helps protect your cat by killing fleas and ticks during the shampoo rinse but also helps ensure your cat’s coat is healthy and soft.
Like most of the cat flea shampoo products on our list above, do not use this flea and tick shampoo on kittens under the age of 12 weeks old.
Other Products That Can Help Protect Your Cat From Fleas
Cat flea shampoos are not the only products you can use to protect your cat from fleas.
While a cat flea shampoo can work effectivley to help get rid of fleas and protect your cat from future fleas and flea bites, it is not always the best flea-protection option for every cat.
Luckily, there are a wide variety of flea repellent products you can choose from when it comes to protecting your cat from these pesky parasites.
Take a look.
Advantage ll Flea Prevention And Treatment
Advantage ll Flea Prevention and Treatment is one of the most common forms of flea prevention and protection for cats and dogs. This product specifically is for larger cats over 9 pounds, but you can order it in doses that are suitable for any size cat.
Not only will this product kill fleas on contact, but it can also protect your cat from contracting future fleas.
The product comes in a pack of one, two, four, or six, and works using a topical ointment that protects cats from fleas, flea eggs, and flea larvae. It provides up to two months of protection against these pests and it is safe for cats in all their life stages.
Cheristin For Cats Topical Flea Prevention
Another product that is designed to protect cats from fleas along with cat flea shampoo is Cheristin for Cats. This product can start killing fleas in as little as 30 minutes after application and is designed for cats over the weight of 1.8 pounds.
It also provides up to six weeks of protection against fleas when used properly and can be safely administered on kittens as young as eight weeks old. It includes a rounded tip applicator for easy and comfortable application and is effective against 98% of fleas within 12 hours.
Seresto Flea Collar For Cats
If you have an outdoor cat, many experts recommend using a flea collar. Flea collars like the flea collar listed above by Seresto can help to protect your cat from pests like fleas and ticks for up to eight months.
Flea collars work by continuously releasing a low concentration of medicated ointment over your cat’s skin and coat.
The product works within 24 hours of being applied and works to repel and kill fleas on contact. This means that fleas do not need to bite your cat in order to be killed, which is important when it comes to protecting your cat from certain diseases these parasites can carry and transmit. We also like that this flea collar is odorless, non-greasy, and effective.
CapAction Fast-Acting Oral Flea Treatment For Cats
Last, we have a tablet you can provide for your cat and kitten to help repel and kill fleas on contact. These tables come in an order of six and are for cats between two and 25 pounds. They are also safe to give to cats four weeks and older.
The tablets are made to kill adult fleas and can help to stop reinfestations in the future. When used alongside a quality cat flea shampoo, you can help protect both indoor and outdoor cats from fleas and their bites.
This product may also help reduce the chances of not only flea-borne illnesses but also allergy dermatitis caused by flea and tick bites.
With all that being said, this product is designed to kill fleas on contact and is not necessarily designed to be used as a flea prevention product.
DIY Remedies You Can Use To Make Your Own Cat Flea Shampoo At Home
There are ways you can make your own cat shampoo at home.
It is possible to make your own cat flea shampoo at home, which is great news for anyone passionate about do it yourself pest control remedies.
To make your own cat flea shampoo, you will need the following ingredients and to follow the below instructions.
- 1 Cup of Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 Cup of Unscented Liquid Dish Soap
- 1 Cup Of Distilled Water
- 1 Clean, Empty Bottle
Combine the above ingredients into your clean bottle and mix the solution until it is sudsy. Wash your cat as needed to kill fleas in contact with this cat flea shampoo.
The homemade shampoo works because the liquid soap will coat the pests’ bodies and suffocate them. You can then remove them with a flea comb or the pests can simply fall off themselves as your cat moves around naturally.
We should note here that while some people use essential oils to repel fleas on pets like dogs, essential oils are generally toxic to cats. For this reason, avoid using essential oils in your homemade cat flea shampoo.
This video below provides a step-by-step guide for how you can make your own cat flea shampoo at home.
Other Expert Tips On Flea Prevention For Cats
Protecting your cat from fleas goes beyond using a cat shampoo.
As we discussed earlier, cats are some of the most common victims of fleas. If cats contract fleas, they could be at risk of serious disease. Furthermore, they can spread fleas to people and pets, and even bring flea infestations to the home.
If you’re concerned about your cat and potential fleas, here are some other methods you can use to keep fleas at bay and protect your cat.
First, Protect Your Pets Accordingly
Just because cats may have a higher risk of suffering from flea infestations doesn’t mean they are the only pet at risk. All pets from dogs, rabbits, and ferrets can potentially contract fleas.
Protect your home and your pets from fleas by ensuring your pets are all protected with flea repellents and remedies.
Many veterinarians recommend flea collars for pets, but you also have the option of using topical ointments, tablets, and of course flea prevention shampoos.
Store Garbage Bins Properly
Garbage bins stored outside can attract wild animals, which can, in turn, lead to fleas on your property or near your home. One of the most effective ways to keep wild animals off of your property is to reduce attractants that may guide them there.
Garbage can be highly attractive to hungry wild animals, so it is best to store your garbage properly. Use garbage bins that seal closed and keep bins stored either far away from your yard where your pets may play or in your garage until the trash pick-up day.
Keep Up With Routine Yard Maintenance
Although keeping your yard well maintained will not guarantee you will no longer have fleas, it can help reduce the risk factor.
Fleas prefer overgrown grassy areas or yards with plenty of debris. The same is true for pests like ticks.
Keeping your yard mowed short and removing excess debris can reduce the number of wild animals that are attracted to your property, and this can also make your habitat less attractive to fleas.
Pick Up Fallen Fruits From Fruit Trees And Harvest Ripe Vegetables
Fallen fruits and overly ripe veggies in gardens can attract hungry wild animals that are carrying fleas. To help keep your yard less attractive to fleas, be sure to harvest vegetables in gardens when they are ready, and pick up fallen fruits from fruit trees.
Use Animal Repellents To Keep Wild Animals At Bay
Wild animal repellents can help keep wild animals off of your property, which can, in turn, reduce your cat’s risk factor when it comes to contracting fleas.
There are a number of natural wild animal repellents you can use, including motion-activated sprinklers, ultrasonic sound devices, and even light and sound repellents.
Use A Year-Round Pest Control Repellent That Works Against Fleas and Ticks
Last but not least, there are several types of pest repellents you can use in your yard that can provide year-round forms of pest control on your property. Some of those pest control products are listed above, though you have several options to choose from if you do some research.
You also have the option of contacting a professional pest control expert to help control fleas and ticks on your property, especially if you live in an area where fleas and ticks are relatively prevalent.
We hope this has been a helpful guide on the best cat flea shampoo! Now we want to hear from you. Have you ever considered making your own cat flea shampoo at home?
Tell us what you think in the comment section below.
Thanks for reading!
Jack founded our blog after two decades of working in the pest control industry. His vast experience dealing with a wide array of pests allows him to diagnose issues quickly and get to the heart of pest problems quickly and effectively. He has serviced more than 2,000 homes over his career and there is hardly any pest situation that he has not seen before.