Welcome to Leslieville aka, Fleaville, Toronto.
Yes, the price we pay for our beloved off-leash parks and leash-less beaches is amounted not only in dog love, but this time of year, in fleas as well. However, you need not fret too hard, we are here to help.
Here is a list of things fleas do not like:
1. Salt. Plain-old table salt. Sprinkle some around the outdoor spaces your dog frequents around your home. You can sprinkle some in his bed too if you don't mind the salt being tracked throughout the house a bit.
2. Citronella. Much like our other good friend the mosquito, fleas also turn their noses up at the smell of citronella.
3. Brewers Yeast. You can sprinkle this directly onto his coat or you can add it to his food. The yeast will seep through your dogs skin making the once favourable environment for the pest, less cozy.
4. Rosmary and Eucalyptus. Hide a few leaves of these under their bed or in the pillow of their bed (hey, is that a Bowsers bed? Where'd you get that?...). It will not only smell wonderful but also deter fleas from camping out with your pet.
The best course of action is to bathe your dog with a natural flea repelling shampoo - we have a GREAT one by Cain and Able, smells like citronella and lime and deliciousness - and then wash EVERYTHING you can that your dog sleeps, plays, eats, thinks on in the hottest water possible. Here you can add salt to the water which will help kill off the suckers. Then vacuum your ENTIRE house as best you can (here is that salt trick again) with salt in the vacuum bag. That should kill the live fleas you vacuum up.
It is best to do all the cleaning and washing and bubble bathing in one day so as to avoid the fleas jumping back on the ride of their life once the tirade against them has stopped. You may need to repeat the procedures but the second time around you and your dog will be pros at dealing with the situation. Keep in mind that having fleas is not as devastating as you imagine, and make sure you pet not only your dogs head but also his ego as he may be thinking this is somehow his fault or that he's a bad dog or that he could have done something differently in his life.
Once everything is cleaned and you are satisfied that you have no uninvited guest spending their time on your dog, you can spray often with a natural flea repellant such as Happy Tails spray and play, or Cain and Able Dog Calogne, both of which are very effective at warding off Fleasy McFlea.