Advantage Flea Control for Dogs
DescriptionAdvantage Green kills fleas on dogs fast. Advantage kills 98% of fleas within 12 hours and continues to work for up to one month per application. It also breaks the flea life cycle by killing flea larvae. Advantage can be used on puppies as young as 7 weeks old. Also, it is safe for dogs that are pregnant or nursing. Advantage is water-resistant, so it kills fleas even after shampooing and exposure to rain. Advantage is applied between the shoulder blades on dogs.
More InfoActivity of imidacloprid against fleas
When a flea is exposed to imidacloprid on a treated pet, the compound is absorbed through the insect's intersegmental membrane. Here, the compound comes into contact with the flea's nervous system. Imidacloprid then acts inside the synapse of the insect to disrupt transmission of the nervous impulse. Imidacloprid binds to post-synaptic nicotinic receptor sites inside the synapse, essentially "locking" the receptor in the open position thus hyperstimulating the cell. As this occurs throughout the nervous system, it leads to death of the insect. Furthermore, imidacloprid is highly selective in its activity. It only binds to insect nicotinic receptor sites, showing virtually no affinity for mammalian receptor sites. As an analogy, one may think of a lock and key, where the insect nicotinic receptor site is the lock and imidacloprid is the key. Imidacloprid only "fits" the right "lock," and does not fit similar receptor sites found in mammals.
Why killing flea lavre is important
Flea larvae live in the dog's environment on bedding, carpeting and anywhere the dog regularly sleeps or plays. By killing flea larvae in the dog's environment, imidacloprid kills potentially re-infesting fleas at the source, before they have a chance to reproduce to infest the pet and the home. This larvicidal activity in the environment, combined with the rapid adulticidal activity on the pet, eliminates existing flea infestations quickly and prevents new ones from developing, all without the use of environmental foggers, sprays, or insect growth regulators.
Imidacloprid is the premier flea control product, in large part, due to its unsurpassed adulticidal activity. However, imidacloprid also possesses significant larvicidal activity. In fact, Advantage, ® and now K9 Advantix, ® are the only flea adulticides that can make a larvicidal claim.
How imidacloprid kills flea larvae in the environment
Once K9 Advantix ® is applied, both active ingredients (imidacloprid and permethrin) spread across the body. Imidacloprid, in particular, spreads rapidly. During this process, imidacloprid forms very fine particles that bind with the superficial lipid layer on the skin surface. This lipid material is slowly shed off of the animal, via the normal replenishing activity of the epidermis. This "dander," made up of bits of epidermal cells, lipid, hair fragments and such, also contains imidacloprid. Thus, the treated dog, in essence, treats its own environment. As imidacloprid is an extremely potent compound (i.e., very small amounts kill fleas and flea larvae), sufficient amounts are deposited to effectively kill flea larvae in the pet's surroundings.
Inhibition of flea biting
Studies conducted in Germany by Dr. Heinz Mehlhorn also demonstrate that imidacloprid possesses significant anti-feeding activity, and fleas that jump onto an imidacloprid-treated dog stop feeding in 3 to 5 minutes. Additional studies, conducted by Dr. Michael Rust at the University of California at Riverside, confirmed that imidacloprid demonstrates significant anti-feeding activity, even at very low doses. These results are significant as it is the feeding activity of fleas that elicits an allergic condition known as flea allergy dermatitis.
Activity of imidacloprid against ticks
The highly specific mode of action of imidacloprid makes it an ideal compound for insect control. However, it does limit its utility against ticks and mites because they are arachnids (the same class as spiders) rather than insects. Research has shown that imidacloprid does not bind as well to arachnid receptors as it does to insect receptors. For this reason, imidacloprid is not utilized as a stand-alone ingredient for canine tick control. Rather, its limited activity against ticks is best exploited to enhance the efficacy of other compounds, permethrin in particular.