AKC eNewsletter

Fall 2011
Mosquitoes: More Than a Nuisance

Mosquitoes are an annoyance not just for humans, but also for dogs. Biting mosquitoes are irritating to dogs, causing them to scratch, which can lead to secondary skin infections. And when a dog is exposed to large populations of mosquitoes, excessive biting can cause the dog to suffer from severe stress.

What's worse, mosquitoes can be carriers of canine vector-borne diseases (CVBDs), including viral and parasitic disease organisms like heartworms. If left untreated, heartworm disease can cause lasting harm to a dog's health and may even lead to death. That's why it's so important to help protect dogs by repelling and killing mosquitoes.

How and why mosquitoes feed on blood
Female mosquitoes take a blood meal because blood is necessary for them to develop fertile eggs. A female mosquito requires a blood meal for each batch of eggs she lays. Male mosquitoes do not feed on blood.

To feed on blood, the mosquito makes a small hole in the host’s skin and inserts two tubes. As the host’s blood flows up one tube, the mosquito’s saliva flows down the other – sometimes carrying disease-causing organisms with it, transmitting them to the host.

Protecting dogs from mosquitoes
Killing mosquitoes after they already begin feeding on a dog does not keep them from transmitting disease-causing organisms. Repelling mosquitoes is a critical step in reducing the risk of exposure to CVBDs. There are two primary approaches to preventing feeding: reduced exposure and repellency. For optimal protection, it's important to employ both approaches.

Reducing exposure

  • Eliminate stagnant water in your dogs' environment. Mosquitoes are attracted to standing water because that's where they breed. Even puddles can be mosquito breeding grounds.
  • Keep your dogs indoors during early morning and evening hours when mosquitoes are most actively feeding.
  • Use insect screens to keep mosquitoes out of any outdoor enclosures where dogs are housed. Make sure there are no mosquitoes inside the enclosure first, by using a premise insecticide that kills all mosquito life stages.

Choose and recommend pest protection that repels AND kills mosquitoes. Repellency is important because if a mosquito doesn't feed, it can't transmit disease-causing organisms. Only use mosquito repellent that is approved for use on dogs. Check the label to determine if the product is for use on dogs, or ask your veterinarian for a recommendation. Many insect repellents that are designed for human use contain chemicals that can cause serious health risks in animals, and therefore should not be used on your dogs.

Formulated for dogs, K9 Advantix® II REPELS and kills mosquitoes, as well as ticks and adult fleas. K9 Advantix® II also kills all flea life stages, repels biting flies and kills lice. By repelling and killing ticks, fleas and mosquitoes, K9 Advantix® II may reduce the risk of transmission of disease-causing organisms to dogs.

K9 Advantix II ad

K9 Advantix® II is easy to apply, and taking this simple step each month can help protect your dogs from mosquitoes that may transmit disease-causing organisms.

More about K9 Advantix® II:

  • It is gentle enough for puppies 7 weeks of age and older.
  • It's waterproof, so there is no need for reapplication after a bath or swimming. For best results, treated dogs should be bathed with a non-detergent shampoo.
  • K9 Advantix® II must not be used on cats, due to their unique physiology and inability to metabolize certain compounds.

Protect the puppies and dogs in your care from mosquitoes and other pests with K9 Advantix® II, and recommend it to your puppy buyers.

Visit petparents.com for additional information.

The study was funded by the National Cancer Institute, the AKC Health Foundation, and the Kate Koogler Canine Cancer Fund.

K9 Advantix® II is for use on dogs only.
K9 Advantix is a registered trademark of Bayer.

Ronald N. Rella, Director, Breeder Services
Email: AKCbreeder@akc.org
Customer Service | Phone: 919-233-9767 | Email: info@akc.org

© The American Kennel Club 2011