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Flea collars are just one of the many methods used in the management and control of flea and tick infestations in cats as well as dogs. These are best used in conjunction with other management techniques that may involve environmental controls as well as judicious application of flea preventatives. Looking for the best flea and tick collar for feline pets may not really be that easy especially if one considers the large number of products all claiming to be the best. We researched the market for what many pet parents consider to be the best brands of flea and tick collar for cats to help you get started in your quest for effective flea control in your pet.
The Seresto flea collar is undoubtedly the best when it comes to flea control whether it is for cats or for dogs. It essentially contains two of the most powerful yet pet-safe insecticides: Imidacloprid and Flumethrin. Both induce paralysis in their target organisms causing death.
Just like the Bayer Seresto flea collar for dogs, the feline version is good for 8 months and comes in a waterproof design. The extra-long protection it affords is made possible by the unique formulation of the flea collar, slowly and continuously releasing lower doses of the active ingredients over a period of 8 months. It also works well with other flea treatments especially if you’re looking at moderate to severe flea infestation in your feline friend. The design of the collar makes it very easy to put on your kitty and doesn’t emit a strongly offensive odor that will make your cat go crazy.
While the active ingredients of Seresto for cats are effective, they may produce redness, hair loss, watery eyes, and other signs of skin irritation in some susceptible cats. There are also reports of lethargy and seizures in some kitties, raising questions about its overall safety. You may want to have a chat with your veterinarian to see if this is right for your pet.
Contains Flumethrin and Imidacloprid
Repels and kills fleas and ticks on contact; requires no biting
Hartz’s UltraGuard cat and kitten flea collar is primarily intended for pet parents who may be looking for a really inexpensive alternative to Seresto. It contains the active ingredient is Etofenprox which is a type of pyrethroid similar to Flumethrin, one of the active ingredients of Seresto for cats. This is what gives the UltraGuard its anti-flea and tick properties. It disrupts the nerve impulse transmission of these organisms, inducing paralysis, and causing death. Like Bayer Seresto, the UltraGuard also kills on contact. Literature indicates that the Etofenprox ingredient of UltraGuard is also effective as a repellent against mosquitoes and biting flies.
Unfortunately, this is also where safety issues come in. If inhaled by cats, it can irritate the respiratory passages. In most cases, skin irritation is a major problem. This substantially limits the UltraGuard’s usefulness in the control of fleas in cats.
Nevertheless, if your kitty happens to be not sensitive to Etofenprox, the UltraGuard can be a very worthy alternative to the leading brand as it is also effective for up to 7 months. It is also water-resistant and comes in a clean fresh scent that should not be irritating to the nose. Do take note that it’s only applicable to kitties older than 12 weeks old.
Effective against fleas and ticks
Provides protection for up to 7 months
Water-resistant with clean fresh scent formulation
With its improved formula, this Flea and Tick Prevention treatment uses quality natural spearmint and clove oil to fend off those nasty nippers from your cat but is gentle enough for more sensitive felines. The result is a pretty effective flea collar that provides up to eight months of protection, which is impressive for a natural flea and flea larvae prevention product. Using 7% composition of each of these natural flea repelling oils, the collar works continuously to keep your kit tiny critter and itch free, and can also work to prevent ticks, biting lice and mange getting on board. This collar can’t be used on very young kittens, but for kits from three months it should work well. And as it can be trimmed back to fit, it can work for even larger cats. Hypoallergenic and waterproof too, this natural formula is perhaps not as strong a flea killer as chemical formulas, but it is effective in repelling those critters without irritating your cat and their skin.
This environmentally friendly flea collar is a revolutionary step forward in cat care. With veterinarians behind the scenes designing and crafting the collar, it’s no surprise that the safety and comfort of your cat has been taken into consideration during the entire process of lab testing the product. Unlike standard collars, which may not yield the desired results that the cat owner is looking for, ShengKou uses natural ingredients to repel and eliminate fleas that are using your cat as their personal buffet.
In the event that your four-legged friend gets snagged on something, there’s a quick release break point on the collar. Collars with these emergency release points should be at the forefront of any owner’s mind if they are making the decision to put a collar on their cat for any length of time. ShengKou’s Flea and Tick Collar can be worn for 12 months and remain effective against pests that are attracted to cats, therefore, having an emergency break point is not only important, but also expected. Thankfully, the team at ShengKou understand this!
You can cover most bases with the Inspector Collar, which offers an effective treatment for both fleas and worms. In fact, it claims to offer protection against 11 species of parasites, making this a two-in-one time and money saver. And its effectiveness lasts four months for fleas and ticks, two months for worms. The active ingredients are Fipronil, Ivermectin and Pyriproxyfen and is waterproof and won’t irritate the skin. The collar comes in three sizes which can expand for medium to larger cats; simply trim the collar to fit. We like the fact that it us odorless and gentle on your cat. But there are mixed reviews as to its overall effectiveness when it comes to eliminating all fleas, but when it does, it appears to work pretty fast.
With its break-away collar, the Adams Plus Flea and Tick Collar is a comfortable device for your kit to wear and will pull apart safely should the get the collar snagged. So far, so good – and the collar does seem quick and effective in clearing up fleas, ticks, flea eggs and larvae from your cat. Unlike Seresto, which uses imidacloprid, Adams use an active ingredient called Tetrachlorvinphos (TCVP). It should be noted that TCVP is slightly more toxic than imidacloprid but they both work in similar ways to effectively zap those pesky fleas. However, you should weigh up the fact that there is that slightly added risk. Care should always be taken with the active ingredients present in most flea collars but if you think it is right for your cat, then you will get around seven months of continuous protection from the Adams Flea and Tick Collar. And the collar is good value and comes in a one-size fits all for total flexibility.
If your cat keeps slipping his collar, then the design of this natural cat and flea treatment could be just the ticket. With an adjustable design which includes gripping teeth on the inside, this collar stays neatly in place without irritating your cat. It is also gentle in other ways as it is non allergenic and contains only natural ingredients to repel and keep those fleas and ticks away. Citronella is the dominant active ingredient, at 15% alongside lemongrass oil (1.2%) and clove (1%). The result is an all-natural formulation that while effective, does have a pretty strong smell but it does work on lice and mosquitoes too. Odor aside, the treatment should last for up to eight months and will be kind on your pet’s fur and skin. It is also water-resistant so can be worn in the rain or damp. And the decent length, ‘one size fits all’ collar can be easily trimmed to fit, so even younger kits can go flea-free.
Controlling fleas and other pests on your cat is important if you want to give your pet a healthier life. While cat flea treatments still form the backbone of effective flea management, flea collars can also help further improve the protection afforded by these preparations. These offer longer protection compared to monthly applications of treatments. However, choosing the right product for your pet can be especially challenging. With our buying guide and FAQ sections, however, you’ll be equipped with the right knowledge and frame of mind to select what’s best for your kitty.
Advantages of Using Flea Collar for Cats
Should you let your cat wear a flea collar instead of other methods of flea control? This is one of the most bugging questions pet parents have whenever they have to decide whether to get a flea collar or not. To help you better decide let us take a look at the advantages of using such products on our feline friends.
Easier to apply
Compared to other methods of flea control, collars are a lot easier to apply. It’s as easy as putting on an ordinary pet collar around your cat’s neck. And if your kitty is already accustomed to wearing a collar, putting flea collars on shouldn’t be a problem. By comparison, topical applications require you to part the fur of your kitty so you can access its skin. Some of the preparation may inadvertently go to the fur, reducing the amount of active ingredients absorbed by the skin.
Provides longer protection
Topical applications of flea treatments generally provide month-long protection. On the other hand, the best-selling brand of flea collars can provide protection for up to 8 months. This is enough coverage to protect your pet especially during the flea season – the warmer months.
Generally less expensive
On a price point alone, even the most expensive flea collar will still be more practical than having monthly topical applications. For example, a leading brand of topical flea treatment for cats can cost you about $10 per applicator. On the other hand, the most expensive flea collar can net you about $50 to $60 depending on where you purchase it. Given that topical applications require monthly dosing, a full 8-month course can net you over $80. The same brand of flea collar which provides 8-month protection will come out more than $20 cheaper.
Can be used as adjunct to other flea treatments
One of the greatest advantages of flea collars is that they can be used as adjuncts to conventional flea treatments to help enhance the protective benefits of such products. However, there are certain instances when the product may not work well with others so it is imperative that you talk to your veterinarian about possible interactions.
Things to Look For When Buying Flea Collar for Cats
For first-time cat owners, choosing a flea collar for their respective felines can be daunting. With so many products competing for pet parents’ attention, many simply fall short of expectations. To help you determine the best possible products from the rest you’d have to pay particular attention to the following things.
If the active ingredient is not readily identifiable in the product label itself, then the company’s official website should provide you with a good idea of the active ingredients that their products contain. This is especially important since a lot of things about the product’s effectiveness and safety concerns can already be addressed if you only know the active ingredient.
We have pointed this out in our listing of the best flea collars for cats. It is one thing to say the collar contains safe, natural ingredient. It is a different matter entirely to say that it is composed of 8% citronella essential oil. Sadly, there are brands that simply fail to recognize the importance of divulging such information to consumers. As pet parents we have the right to know what we are putting on our cats.
Like all pet collars, a snug fit is preferred over loose or tight fit. Unfortunately, many products today come as a one-size-fits-all type with the addition of mechanisms that will allow pet parents to make the necessary adjustments. If you can get a feline flea collar that comes in various sizes depending on the breed of your cat, then this is a lot better than a single size. However, if none is available, then you should always go for something that can be fully adjusted.
Don’t ever make the mistake of buying a flea collar that is primarily designed for dogs. While there are active ingredients that can be safely used with either cats or dogs, there are also those that are safe on canines but are toxic to felines. As such, unless the label reads that it is safe to be used on cats, don’t put a flea collar intended for dogs. If you’re in doubt always consult your vet.
Integrity of construction
Flea collars are not like your ordinary pet collars that may be constructed of polyester, nylon, or even leather materials. Some poorly-formulated flea collars are actually very brittle that they can easily snap. That said, it is crucial that you check reviews as to the quality of the construction of the collar. Does it break easily?
Best Cat Flea Collars FAQ:
Q: How do cat flea collars work?
A: There are three types of flea collars for cats. The first type work by emitting ultra-high frequency sound waves that tend to disorient fleas and make them not want to go anywhere near the source of that ear-splitting sound. The good thing with this type of cat flea collars is that the ultrasonic wave created can only be heard by fleas so it will not disrupt you or your kitty. Regrettably, there have been mixed responses as to the effectiveness of such technologies.
The second type of cat flea collars emits noxious gas into the air. It’s like slowly dispersing volatile oils into the surrounding air which, when inhaled by fleas, can lead to their demise. The problem with such mechanisms is that it is only effective within the immediate vicinity of the collar which is the neck region. As such, fleas can still be present in other parts of your cat’s body away from the neck.
The third type of collars for flea control is those that are absorbed into the skin. These are like topical applications that get absorbed into your cat’s skin and distributed through the superficial blood vessels. Some flea collars kill fleas upon contact, although most collars require the flea to bite first and ingest the toxic substance before it eventually dies. It is for this reason that some pet parents are concerned about the safety of such formulations.
Q: Are cat flea collars safe?
A: When used properly, cat flea collars are perfectly safe. However, if it is too loose that your pet may actually lick on it, then potential problems can arise. It may also not be safe for cats that are hypersensitive to the active ingredient of the collar. This is one of the most important reasons why the product should have a readily-identifiable ingredient so you’ll know exactly if your pet is allergic to it or not.
Q: When can a cat wear a flea collar?
A: Depending on the type and brand of flea collar that you buy, a kitten can start wearing it as early as 8 weeks old while some put the minimum age requirement at 10 weeks. Still, there are others that wait until about 3 months before kittens can start wearing a flea collar. You need to consult your vet as to when exactly you can have your cat wear its very first flea collar.
Q: Can fleas from cats live on humans?
A: The natural host of cat fleas or Ctenocephalides felis is the domestic cat. However, because fleas are obligate blood-suckers, feeding off warm-blooded mammals, it is not uncommon that cat fleas can also bite into the skin of humans. This doesn’t mean that they will live on the skin of humans, however. It just so happens that because of our closeness with our pets, these pests do inadvertently latch onto our skin. Human skin is very different from cat skin so it will not really be very hospitable for cat fleas to thrive.
Q: How effective are flea collars for cats?
A: Some products are proven to start killing fleas within 2 hours of putting the flea collar on and about 6 hours for ticks. Such products continue killing up to 90% of all fleas by the end of the flea collar’s life. These figures are from the Seresto collar for cats. The product has been extensively tested that the brand can rightfully make such claims. Unfortunately, there are products that do not have scientific bases to back up their claims of effectiveness. It is for this reason that we strongly recommend getting only brands that are backed by clinical evidence.
As for natural products like citronella-infused flea collars, the major issue is that companies don’t divulge how much citronella they put into their products. In many instances, they don’t even conduct empirical studies to support their claims.
Q: Are there alternatives to a flea and tick collar?
A: As we have already mentioned, flea collars are just one of the different ways in which you can control fleas on your pet cat. You can also use cat flea treatments that usually come as topical spot-on applications. These products need to be applied once a month, depending on the brand. There are also cat flea treatments that come in chewable formulations that can be given as is or included in your kitty’s food. There are also flea sprays. If you use such products, care should be taken that the solution will not be sprayed onto your kitty’s eyes. There are also flea shampoos if in case your tabby is the kind that loves to shower. Of course, there are also veterinary formulated and natural flea products that you may want to give a try.
A: Depending on the active ingredient present on the flea collar, cats that lick their collars can present with a few digestive complaints. However, in certain instances especially in cats that are hypersensitive to any ingredient in the formulation, lethargy, anemia, and even seizures may occur. This is why it is very important to know the active ingredient so you’ll know exactly what to expect. Just because it says it’s natural doesn’t mean you should already put your guard down.
Q: How long does it take for a flea collar to work on a cat?
A: Again, depending on the active ingredient embedded in the flea collar, these may start working on killing fleas within a matter of hours such as Imidacloprid’s 2-hour onset of action against fleas and 6-hour onset of action against ticks. Some brands that carry different active ingredients may start working within 12 hours or even after 2 days. This is the problem with products that use natural ingredients. There really is no way to establish the onset of action of their active ingredients since these are usually taken in the general context and not as a per-product basis. They may claim that it works instantly. But the point is they cannot quantify the word ‘instant’.
There’s no denying that Bayer’s Seresto Flea Collar for cats is the best for the simple fact that it is the most recommended brand by vets. Moreover, it provides exceptional flea and tick killing properties that don’t require these pests to bite first. The 8-month long protection is also noteworthy. It does come with side effects that may be quite unforgivable to some pet parents, but overall its effectiveness far outweighs the safety issues especially if you have a cat that is really not hypersensitive to the active ingredients. That being said, a worthy replacement should be Govesta if you want to save more than half the cost of Seresto.
If you’re not into synthetic insecticides such as Imidcaloprid and Flumethrin, a worthy alternative is the REGIROCK collar that provides the same 8-month long protection as Seresto, but costs only less than half its price. Sadly, we really cannot guarantee the active ingredient as there is very little information as to what comprises its formulation aside from citronella.
Protecting pet cats from fleas is a responsibility of every pet parent as we really cannot expect our furry friends to protect themselves. Choosing the right product means doing what is best for them. With these best flea collars for cats and the different guidelines we’ve shared we’re hopeful you’re more than enlightened to bring home the right flea collar for your kitty.