The Best Flea and Tick Medicines for Dogs (Buyer’s Guide)

by Stuart | Last Updated:   March 29, 2019
As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases made on our website. If you make a purchase through links from this website, we may get a small share of the sale from Amazon and other similar affiliate programs.

One of the unavoidable challenges, when you’re a dog parent, is facing down those pesky fleas. Even if you keep your home spick and span, chances are your dog will come into contact with fleas from outside sources. 

Fleas can also cause some serious health issues for your dog and their impact on your dog’s well-being shouldn’t be taken lightly.

So you may be wondering, what is the best flea and tick control for dogs?

Top Pick At A Glance

K9 advantix

  • Starts working to kill fleas within 12 hours and keeps working for 30 days
  • Suitable for effective year-round dog flea and tick treatment for large dogs

As an Amazon associate we earn from qualifying purchases, thanks for supporting our work!

Here are our top 5 flea and tick medicines for dogs:

  1. Bayer K9 Advantix II
  2. Seresto Flea and Tick Collar for Dogs
  3. Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Home Spray
  4. Frontline Plus Dog Flea and Tick Treatment
  5. PETARMOR Plus for Dogs, Flea and Tick Prevention
  6. SOBAKEN Flea and Tick Prevention
  7. Adams Flea and Tick Collar for Dogs
  8. Capstar Fast-Acting Oral

Dealing with fleas in dogs can be a real hassle. That’s why preventing fleas should be your priority.

You can’t keep them inside at all times, that’s for sure. You also don’t want to spend time every week dealing with fleas on your dog that just won’t go away. What is the best flea control for dogs?

Prevention is more than half the battle!

Our Recommendations for the Best Flea and Tick Medicine for Dogs

Now that you’ve learned more about the types of flea control available, let’s take a close look at the top 5 recommended products.

We also dive a bit deeper into preventing ticks and fleas for your dog, but also some tips on choosing the right flea and tick medication for your dog (and what types of stuff to avoid).

So if you’re still looking for more information, continue reading passed the reviews.

1. Bayer K9 Advantix II

This is our top recommended flea and tick medicine for dogs for a reason. It’s easy to administer with the provided application tube, and it only needs to be done once a month.

Bayer

  • 2 monthly applications of K9 Advantix II Flea and tick prevention for large dogs weighing 21-55 pounds
  • K9 Advantix II Flea and tick prevention for dogs works through contact, so fleas, ticks and mosquitoes do not have to bite your dog to die
  • K9 Advantix II Flea and tick control for dogs is an easy to apply topical formula

It will work towards protecting your dog from fleas, ticks, mosquitos, biting flies and lice.

You’ll want to ensure you get the right size for the weight of your dog as they offer this product for small to extra-large dogs.


2. Seresto Flea and Tick Collar for Dogs

The Bayer Flea and Tick Collar is a super popular option created by a trustworthy brand. The collar comes in two sizes to fit both small and large dogs.

Just one Bayer collar will provide your dog with 8 months of protection against fleas and ticks.

Seresto

  • Provides 8-months of continuous flea and tick prevention
  • Seresto flea and tick collar for large dogs work through contact, so fleas and ticks do not have to bite your dog to die
  • Veterinarian-recommended flea and tick prevention for dogs in a convenient, odourless and non-greasy collar; No need for messy monthly treatments
  • Starts to repel and kill fleas within 24 hours of initial application
  • Flea and tick collar for large dogs also helps treat and control sarcoptic mange and kills lice

The collar is non-greasy and odourless for your dog’s comfort and kills fleas and ticks on contact. This collar can be worn easily with additional leash collars without causing any annoyance to your dog. 

The collar continuously releases a low concentration of the active ingredient for optimal protection.


3. Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Home Spray | Flea Treatment

If you’re in the market to add a flea spray to your control collection, try Vet’s Best. This spray kills fleas, flea eggs, and ticks on contact to keep your home and dog safe and protected.

Vet’s Best

  • Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Home Spray kills fleas, flea larvae, flea eggs, ticks and mosquitoes by contact without harsh chemicals
  • Our spray is scientifically proven effective against pests but gentle enough to use around the whole family
  • Certified Natural Oils – Each steam-distilled essential oil is selected for its potent pest-fighting properties and is 100% Certified Natural
  • Applies easily on surfaces, indoors and out, including dog bedding, crates, furniture, blankets, upholstery, carpets, outdoor surfaces, and more

The formula is safe to use around your whole family and you can even spray it directly on dogs over 12 weeks of age.

This spray is designed so that it will not stain your furniture or clothes. Vet’s Best spray is made in the US and is a plant-based formula.

After you finish spraying target areas in your home, head to your dog and spray its body directly. After leaving the spray for a minute or two, take a paper towel or rag and wipe them clean. If there were any fleas or ticks,  you’ll see them!


4. Frontline Plus Dog Flea and Tick Treatment

For another great topical tick and flea medication for dogs is Frontline Plus. It will kill and prevent fleas, fleas, flea eggs and larvae, lice and ticks. 

Frontline Plus

  • Designed for use only with dogs and puppies, this long-lasting treatment is made for dogs eight weeks or older
  • Made with two active ingredients, fipronil and (S)-methoprene, this treatment stops infestations and prevents new ones
  • Applied on a single point on your pet, the treatment rapidly covers your dog’s entire body and deposits in the sebaceous glands, these glands as a reservoir, continuously replenishing the treatment onto your pet, working even if your dog gets wet
  • One dose of FRONTLINE Plus lasts 30 days

You’ll also get 30 days of protection per application. It’s a waterproof, fast-acting flea and tick treatment that kills fleas, flea eggs, lice, and ticks, including those that may transmit Lyme disease.


5. PETARMOR Plus for Dogs, Flea and Tick Prevention

PETARMOR Squeeze-On is a solid topical option for flea control. The formula comes in specific versions for dogs of various sizes. Each topical application kills fleas, flea eggs, flea larvae, ticks, and chewing lice for 30 days. 

PETARMOR

  • Fully waterproof, flea & tick topical prevention for cats that kills fleas, flea eggs, flea larvae, ticks, and chewing lice for up to 30 days after application
  • Containing fipronil and the same active ingredients as Frontline Plus for Dogs, PetArmor Plus for Dogs has been trusted by veterinarians
  • for nearly 20 years due to a powerful formula that kills fleas within 24 hours
  • Unlike other flea and tick treatments that may just temporarily suppress flea activity, PETARMOR Plus Dog Flea Treatment works by breaking the flea cycle entirely! Kill flea eggs and larvae for up to 12 weeks

The formula will begin killing already existing fleas within 24 to 48 hours of application.

The PetArmor formula is waterproof and has a shelf-life of 5 years, so there is no need to toss it if it hasn’t been used in a while. For an affordable price, you get 6 months worth of protection against fleas and ticks for your dog.


6. SOBAKEN Flea and Tick Prevention

The SOBAKEN Prevention Collar is an affordable option if you’re looking for protection that uses natural ingredients and omits harmful chemicals. This collar is made from 100% natural botanical ingredients for your dog’s health and safety.

SOBAKEN

  • Flea and Tick Сollar for dogs protect your pet or puppy from flea and ticks 24h/7 days a week for 8 MONTHS
  • New formula. More effective flea and tick prevention for dogs than other collars and still hypoallergenic for you and your pet
  • You can start use a Collar from 3 month age of your pet. You can use our collar for SMALL, MEDIUM and LARGE dogs
  • Continues to be 100% effective after bathing and playing in the rain.
  • With every sold collar we donate 3$ to Organizations that are engaged in saving animals

One Arava collar provides protection for 5 months at a time. This collar is safe for wear by puppies and adult dogs. The Arava collar is rainproof and waterproof, so there’s no need to be overly cautious about removing the collar when your dog swims or takes a bath.

This collar is infused with natural essential oils that promote relaxation and prevent disease. If you feel like the smell is strong, leave the collar out for 24-48 before putting on your pup.


7. Adams Flea and Tick Collar for Dogs

The Adams Flea and Tick Collar is a seriously budget-friendly option for anyone looking to test a new type of flea control on their dog. This collar provides 7 months of protection against adult fleas and ticks.

The treatment acts fast and will keep your dog safe. 

Adams

  • PROVEN EFFECTIVE: Collar kills fleas and ticks, and repels mosquitoes for up to 6 months.
  • LONG LASTING: Each collar provides up to 6 months’ protection
  • EXTRA VALUE: Two collars in each tin provide 12 months’ protection total.
  • SO EASY: Flea, tick and mosquito prevention in one easy step without messy topicals.
  • ONE SIZE FITS ALL: Adjustable: One size fits all dogs. Just cut to size.
  • WATER RESISTANT: Collars effectiveness will not be impaired after exposure to water

This collar is water-resistant and will continue working even when it’s wet.

The Adams collar is adjustable, so you can create a custom fit for your dog’s comfortable daily wear. These collars will kill fleas and ticks on contact.

If you want to be sure that your dog does not experience a flea or tick infestation, use this collar in combination with other methods such as shampoos or sprays.


8. Capstar Fast-Acting Oral Flea Treatment for Dogs

Capstar offers a fast-acting oral flea treatment for dogs and is a great product to keep on hand if you’ve been routinely dealing with fleas on your dog (unfortunately, not ticks as well).

While it’s not an ongoing preventative treatment, it will act fast to get rid of a messy flea infestation for your dog. It will begin working within 30 minutes after a dosage is taken.

Capstar

  • Includes 6 doses for use with dogs weighing 25. 1 – 125 (57 mg) pounds
  • One oral tablet starts killing fleas within 30 minutes of administration
  • Tackle flea infestations fast – give Capstar and watch dead fleas fall off your pet
  • The convenience of an oral tablet available without a prescription from your vet
  • If your pet gets re-infested with fleas, you can safely give another dose as often as once per day

It’s difficult to find a flea treatment like this for your dog without a prescription. Fortunately, Capstar has made one available. It’s also suitable for all dogs, different ages and stages, different weights and different breeds.


What Options Are There for Dog Flea & Tick Medicine?

To answer the question ‘what is the best flea control for dogs?’ you need to know what you’re working with. When it comes to flea control, here are the choices you’re looking at for your dog:

Topical Medications 

These medications are often referred to as ‘spot-ons.’ You apply them directly to your dog’s skin. Typically, these treatments contain chemicals that work to repel and kill fleas, ticks, and mosquitos.

Oral Medications

You can also give your dog a monthly oral medication to prevent encounters with fleas. Many are designed to treat multiple issues including heartworm and internal parasites along with fleas.

Sprays

Certain sprays can last for months at a time, but you may need to reapply if your dog gets very wet.

Powders

Powders are another option that you spread over your dog’s whole body, save their face and eyes.

Shampoos

If you stay on top of your dog’s regular grooming, you could add a flea shampoo to the regimen. These shampoos are ideal for treating a current infestation 

Dips

Flea dip is a concentrated liquid that you dilute with water and apply to your dog’s body with a sponge. The dip is left on the skin and allowed to air-dry.

Collars

Flea collars contain concentrated chemicals that repel fleas and last for several months at a time. This is a relatively inexpensive and convenient option.

As you can see, there are many options when it comes to keeping fleas away from your pup. The choice is yours but it’s always wise to discuss the matter with your veterinarian before investing in a product.

Tips For Purchasing Flea and Tick Medicine for Dogs

Here are some things to look out for, and to avoid, when choosing the best flea and tick medicine for your dog.

We are recommending products that are available on Amazon due to the lower prices and convenience of delivery. So if you are not getting your flea and tick medicine straight from a veterinarian, it’s important to understand which active ingredients you should consider using and which ingredients you should probably avoid.

Here are some of the most effective active ingredients in flea and tick medicines for dogs:

  • Afoxolaner (Brand name NexGard)
  • Fluralaner (Brand name Bravecto)
  • Nitenpyram (Brand name Capstar)
  • Spinosad (Brand name Comfortis)
  • Fipronil (Brand name Frontline)

This is where consulting with a vet is crucial. Your dog may have a reaction to one or more of these ingredients. It could be a mild and unnoticeable reaction, but it can also be on that causes pain or discomfort.

While your vet may not be able to tell you which ingredient, with certainty, is safest for your dog, they may be able to get you closer to the right one, especially if they have a history of treating your dog.

While most flea and tick medicines have been deemed safe by the FDA, there are serious side effects that can occur, one of which being seizures.

If your dog is already prone to seizures you should be seeking veterinarian advice on handling your dog’s flea situation.

IngredientsNegative Effect
Permethrin and pyrethrins Toxic to cats
Tetrachlorvinphos, carbaryl, and propoxur Insecticides (common in flea collars)
Fipronil, permethrin, pyrethrins, or imidaclopridPotential carcinogens; Nervous system toxins
IsoxazolineSeizures; Neurological problems in some dogs and cats

There are also some specific medicines you should avoid giving your dog, which has been identified by the FDA to possibly cause seizures:

Brand NameMedication Type
Ravecto tablets for dogs
Simparicatablets for dogs
Credeliotablets for dogs
Nexgardtablets for dogs
Bravecto topical solution for cats and dogs

And as mentioned in some of the reviews, some medications are designed for a specific dog weight, so always double-check that if the medication you’re considering has a suggested dog weight and get the appropriate one for your dog’s weight.

More Tips to Prevent Your Dog from Getting Fleas and Ticks

Prevention is always the best way to deal with ticks and fleas in dogs.

If you’re walking with your dog in new and “undiscovered” territory, you may want to consider keeping them on their leash so they stay on the trail.

And if you are doing a lot of exploring or going on adventures, it’s best to get in the habit of inspecting your dog regularly. You can use these tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guide:

Infographic for checking fleas and ticks on dog

Another way to be proactive is to make sure you are bathing your dog regularly and to wash their common areas of the house regularly as well, like their bed and nearby carpets or rugs.

Brands Of The Flea and Tick Medicine for Dogs

Here are some of our favourite brands that make excellent products for treating your dog’s fleas and ticks.

Bayer Animal Health (Elanco)

Bayer Animal Health is located in Argentina and believes healthy animals are the key to solving some of the world’s most pressing issues. Through their innovative products and services, they empower veterinarians, food producers, pet owners, and all those who raise and care for animals with the tools they need to advance animal health, whether it’s sustainable protein production, chronic disease management, year-round wellness, or therapeutics.

Vet’s Best

Vet’s Best was founded over 35 years ago by a veterinarian and is committed to using premium quality and plant-based ingredients scientifically formulated to ensure your pet’s overall well-being. Their products are naturally derived, so you’ll never have to worry about harsh chemicals. Your pet’s health is our first priority, so they’ve done the research, created the products, and care what you put on—and in—your pet as much as you do.

Adams™

Adams™ is located in Pheonix and their products take a smarter approach to pet care. They make protecting your family, pet, home, and yard easier and more effective. The Adams™ line of products, which has been sold by veterinarians for more than 30 years, includes flea & tick topical products, shampoos, collars and sprays for your home, yard, dogs, puppies, cats and kittens and is available almost everywhere pet products are sold.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How do I know if my dog has ticks or fleas?

A. Your dog’s skin may look red and bumpy, especially if your dog has been scratching. You may also see tiny adult fleas that scurry away quickly or even jump.

Q. Where to look for fleas and ticks on my dog?

A. Your dog’s armpits and groin are two areas that are favourite spots for large flea populations. Check your dog’s earsfor signs of scratching, redness, blood, or dirt.

Q. Can ticks and fleas kill a dog?

A. Fleas and ticks can transmit serious diseases to your dog which can threaten their life if untreated. Some of these diseases include: Lyme disease, Anemia, Ehrlichia, and tick paralysis.

Final Thoughts

Flea control is one of the most important parts of being a dog owner. The best way to approach the issue is with prevention. 

Keep your dog protected throughout the year and avoid dealing with the issue. Your dog will thank you for keeping them comfortable and free of fleas.

Continue Reading:

  1. Best Dog Clippers for Thick Fur
  2. Best Dog Dryers for at Home
  3. Best Puppy Shampoo for Smell
  4. Best Chew Toys for Dogs that Last
  5. Best Airline Approved Small Dog Carriers

Stuart loves blogging about his hobbies and passions. Sir Doggie is a place for him to share what he learns while being a pet parent. Click here to read more.