« I’m not a flea bag », meowed Ahri, deeply mortified. And yet, there was no doubt as to the identity of the vile creatures fearlessly frolicking in her fabulous fur. Ahri’s pride was not the only thing hurt by the pugnacious pesky pests. Their bites lead to horrible itching, ravaging our favourite four-legged furry domestic companion’s delicate epidermis. To add insult to injury, they also ruin her morale, leaving her irritable, anxious, utterly dejected and in dire need of counselling.
As far as the vexing vermin are concerned, there are lots of chemical treatments that can wipe them out, but these neurotoxic insecticides in sprays, eye droppers or flea collars are, according to scientists, harmful to felines and humans – especially young children. In spray, for example, the recommended Fipronil® dose for a cat is 7,5mg/kg. So it's 22.5mg for a 3kg cat and 22.5 times the threshold worrying authorities in the contaminated eggs scandal.
But don’t despair, natural flea remedies are effective and safe for felines and humans. So, at the first signs of infestation, grab hold of the soda bicarb box and generously sprinkle the cute kitty, carefully avoiding her eyes.
Gently massage into her coat and, if she is willing, leave in for as long as she can stand it – i.e. 30 minutes or more. Follow up with a thorough comb-over to collect the dead blood suckers.
Another lethal weapon is good homemade shampoo: In a lovely bowl, mix 1 teaspoon white vinegar with the same amount of Castile soap or soft soap. Put Ahri in an empty wash-bowl, wet her with a face cloth, work the shampoo into her fur, let it sit for 5 minutes and rinse out thoroughly. Finish with a flea comb soaked in a half water and half vinegar solution. Renew the treatment every fortnight for 2 months to ensure all the villains have gone.
To prevent future humiliation, prepare a magic potion: mix 1 drop of catnip essential oil – well tolerated by cats – in 1 teaspoon of Raymond’s vodka or rum and 1 tablespoon grape nut oil. Mix and rub some of this lotion between Ahri’s shoulders and then all over.
If you prefer a spray, put 5 tablespoons of each dried catnip and dried rosemary in a glass jar, cover with Raymond’s vodka, tightly close the lid and put in a cupboard for 3 weeks. Shake the mixture every day. When it's ready, filter and pour in a pretty spray bottle. Protect Ahri’s eyes and nose and spritz her behind the ears and all over, parting her fur with a brush as you work.
If you think she needs a flea collar, dip a nylon or cotton collar in the mixture, air dry and put around her neck. You’ll need to repeat the procedure every week.