GL3: Control of Ectoparasites in Dogs and Cats

External, or ectoparasites, include a wide range of parasitic arthropods, which belong taxonomically to the sub-class Acari (ticks and mites) and to the class Insecta (fleas, chewing and sucking lice, mosquitoes, flies and phlebotomes (sand flies)).  The aim of this guideline is to deliver comprehensive information and support to assist both veterinarians and pet owners to successfully control ectoparasite infestations and prevent secondary infections and disease transmission to their pets. The guideline concentrates on the most important groups of ectoparasites namely fleas, ticks, lice (which taxonomically consist of two different groups: sucking lice and chewing lice) and mites.

Other ectoparasites such as phlebotomes (sand flies) and mosquitoes are mainly of importance as vectors of disease and although briefly mentioned in this guideline, are more appropriately dealt with in ESCCAP's guideline on the control of vector-borne diseases in dogs and cats.