Is my dog on the right flea and worm control?




Wow, it’s a loaded question. Not because I don’t have the answer for you – but because there are so many different products you can use to get you to the same end goal. 

So what I thought I’d do is put this guide together for dog parents living in the Maroondah area. The aim is to give you an idea of the main big bugs you need to make sure you’re covering. If you’re moving, or travelling, well, this advice is likely going to change!

Should my dog be on flea prevention?

Dogs and fleas go hand-in-hand. And you know who else fleas love? Your pet cat, your carpet, your bedding, oh – and you! These little guys are irritating and can cause massive allergic skin disease which can take weeks of medication to help soothe. Don’t chance them, infestations are not the house party you want to be hosting.  

Should my dog be on tick prevention? 

Ok, so we don’t have the deadly paralysis tick living locally (yet), but we certainly have other local ticks. We see them all the time. Whilst they can be irritating, they can also transmit blood-borne diseases. Staying routine with tick prevention is a no-brainer, if for no other reason than it’s just not worth the risk of an inadvertent run-in with the terrible paralysis tick. 

Should my dog be on intestinal worm prevention?

Intestinal worms are especially common in dogs, especially puppies.They can cause symptoms of tummy upsets, bloating, diarrhoea and are absolutely repulsive. Dog’s will pick these up pretty routinely from mum when they are born, and will continue to get reinfected by eating contaminated poop from other animals. 

Tapeworm Prevention

Tapeworm prevention is so often forgotten, and so for this reason – is the worm I am most often running into. The most common type of tapeworm your dog will contract is the flea tapeworm – from chewing on and ingesting infected fleas. Yummy.

In Mainland Australia, we also have a pretty nasty variety of tapeworm – the hydatid tapeworm. This is an all-around bad-guy worm which can be transmitted to humans, making us seriously sick. The best way to avoid this worm is to avoid feeding raw offal from sheep, kangaroos and cattle.    


This worm does exactly what it sounds like – it’s a worm. It grows in the heart. Whilst it is more common in the more tropical Australia, it has certainly been detected in local foxes. Infection via mosquito bites makes transmission too easy. It remains to be seen how the climate will impact the rate of heartworm infestation in Victorian dogs. 


Spread by foxes and wombats – and yes, we are sharing Maroondah with both. Some mites, especially scabies, can also spread and cause horrid irritation in people. Don’t give them a chance to settle in. 

So, which one product on the market will give you the perfect combination of protection? 

Sadly, to my knowledge, there’s no one product that is going to give you a cover across all spectrums. And each product will come with their own ups and downs, for instance, is a topical treatment, or oral treatment best for your dog?


At the end of the day, it’s a loaded question, and there can be some pretty unsettling consequences from failing to make a move. Your best bet is to have an open discussion with your pet’s veterinary team to collaborate on the best solution – and that’s the honest truth!


vicky | Ringwood Emergency Vet | Australia | Ringwood | Victoria

Dr. Vicky Wade