Is Advantage Safe for Nursing Dogs? [Flea Prevention]

Zack Keithy, our author, is a certified veterinarian technician (UC Blue Ash) for over 6 years (contact him here). The articles written here are based on his expertise and experience, combined with a review by our expert vet reviewers including Dr M. Tarantino. Learn more about us here.

Fleas may be small, but they can be a big problem for your furry friend. Not only do they cause a lot of discomfort and even transmit diseases, but they can also lead to skin irritations. 

And that’s the main reason why lots of dog owners turn to using flea treatments like Advantage to keep our pets safe and healthy.

But what about pregnant or nursing dogs? Many pet owners are concerned about using flea treatments on their dogs during these times. 

Is Advantage safe for nursing dogs at all?

Yes, Advantage is safe for nursing dogs, as well as for pregnant bitches and puppies that are older than 7 weeks old. When you apply the drug, it’s best to do so after nursing and to keep the mother dog apart from the puppies for a few hours just to play it safe.

In this article, I’ll explore the different options for flea treatment during pregnancy and nursing, as well as for newborn puppies. I will also cover the risks of using Advantage on a nursing dog, and what are some safe alternatives.

Medical Questions? Talk to a Veterinarian 24/7.
Connect one-on-one with a licensed vet who will answer your questions in minutes.

Ask a Vet Now or Schedule a home visit

*Article may contain affiliate links to retailers like Amazon and Chewy. Learn more on our disclosure page.

Flea Treatment for Nursing Dogs

Flea Treatment for Nursing Dogs

In general, it is safe to use Advantage flea treatment for both pregnant and nursing dogs. 

As a topical treatment, it is applied to the back of your dog on exposed skin, but you should know that some treatments come in oral forms instead.

In such cases, they are usually not safe for pregnant and nursing dogs, so it’s important that you know the difference.

Besides using imidacloprid-based treatments such as the above, there are other options too.

Using safe alternatives such as flea combs, herbal flea sprays, and essential oil treatments can also help get rid of fleas without harming a nursing mother or her puppies. 

If you are still unsure, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian before using any flea treatment during nursing to ensure that it’s safe.

Key Benefits

  • Very effective; results within 12 hours
  • Easy to apply
  • Fragrance-free
  • Waterproof

Doggy says, consider reading this too: Do dogs fart more during pregnancy?

Potential Risks of Using Advantage on a Nursing Dog

While it’s generally considered safe, there are some things to watch out for when using Advantage for your dog.

First off, if your dog has a bad reaction, it can cause some serious issues like nerve and brain damage. 

Some symptoms to look out for include dilated pupils, eye irritation, drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, skin irritation, seizures, shaking, and difficulty breathing. 

Your dog might also lose their appetite, itch, or become lethargic.

To prevent any adverse reactions, make sure to apply the medication to the correct spot on your dog’s back, between the shoulder blades. 

This will reduce the risk of them licking the medication off and ingesting it. 

Also, be sure to use the right amount of medication. There are different options available that will suit your dog’s size and weight properly.

If you notice any abnormal signs, it’s important to act quickly and get your dog to the vet.

Hey there, sorry to interrupt but I wanted to tell you about an online vet service I’ve been using for years.

An in-person visit with one is great, but it’s not always an option.

Now, thanks to technology, you can speak to one without leaving your home.

Remote access
Avoidance of travel
Reduced stress for pets
Immediate access to experts
Quick response time
Schedule appointments easily

Got something to ask a vet?
Talk to one anytime, 24/7.


* Don’t use this service for emergencies.

Alternatively, a vet can come out to you instead (exclusive to our readers: use THEVETS15 for 15% off).


Thank you. The rest of the article continues below.

Doggy says, you might be interested in reading this too: Simparica Trio overdose

Alternative Flea Treatments for Nursing Dogs

Fortunately, there are alternative flea treatments that are safe for nursing dogs. Here is a look at your options:

  • Flea comb: A flea comb is one with tightly spaced teeth that can help to remove fleas and their eggs from your pet’s fur. It’s a non-toxic and natural option that can be used in conjunction with other treatments.
  • Herbal flea sprays: There are a variety of herbal flea sprays available that use natural ingredients like peppermint, rosemary, and cedar oil to repel and kill fleas. These can be sprayed directly on your pet or on bedding and furniture to help prevent flea infestations.
  • Essential oils: Some essential oils like lavender, tea tree, and eucalyptus can be used to repel and kill fleas. These should be diluted and applied topically or used in a diffuser to provide a safe and natural alternative to chemical treatments.
  • Flea collar: This is a flea and tick collar that provides protection for up to eight months. It’s water-resistant and safe for use on dogs and cats.
  • Chews: This is an oral chewable tablet that kills fleas and ticks. It’s safe for use on dogs and comes in different sizes based on your pet’s weight.

Doggy says, you might be keen to read this too: Do Huskies get ticks?

How can I prevent my nursing dog from getting fleas in the first place?

Fleas are a common nuisance for dogs and cats and can cause health problems if not treated early. Luckily for us dog owners, there are steps you can take to prevent fleas on your pet.

  • Limit the amount of time your pet spends outdoors and avoid contact with wild and stray animals.
  • Bathing and brushing your pet regularly.
  • Check for fleas regularly, especially during the warmer and more humid months, when fleas are most active.
  • Talking to your veterinarian about flea control products that are safe for your pet.
  • When using flea control products, always follow the product instructions carefully to ensure their effectiveness and your pet’s safety. 

What to Do if Your Dog Has Fleas and You Have a Baby?

Lots of us will be quite concerned if we have a kid and our dog has fleas. There’s this fear that they might jump over and hurt our child.

Luckily, the type of fleas that grows on our dogs really prefer them rather than us humans.

They need dog blood to feed themselves and also an environment where they can hide easily – you guessed it, dog fur!

Although they do occasionally jump over to humans and sometimes bite us, they do not cause any harm and will leave very quickly.

Doggy says, you might be interested to read this too: Do poodles get fleas?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you get rid of fleas on newborn puppies?

Flea treatment is not recommended for newborn puppies until they are at least 7 to 8 weeks old, as their bodies are not yet developed enough to handle the medication. Instead, you can use a flea comb to gently remove fleas from their fur. Not only that, but you should also keep your home clean to prevent any fleas from multiplying in the first place.

What age can you use Advantage on puppies?

Advantage flea treatment can be used on puppies once they are at least 7 weeks old. Before using any flea treatment on puppies, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian to determine if it’s safe for your puppy.

Is Advantage or Advantage II safe for puppies?

Both Advantage and Advantage II are safe for puppies when used according to the instructions. However, it’s important to use the appropriate dosage for your puppy’s weight to prevent any potential side effects. It’s also important to monitor your puppy after using any flea treatment to ensure they don’t have an adverse reaction.

Is Advantage safe for dogs of all sizes?

According to the manufacturer, Advantage is generally considered safe for dogs of all sizes, even for newborn puppies. As long as the treatment is applied correctly, avoiding the eyes and mouth, they will not cause any injury to your dog.

In Conclusion: Is Advantage Safe for Nursing Dogs?

Keeping our furry friends safe and healthy from flea infestations is something we should never overlook, especially for nursing dogs and their puppies. 

While Advantage is generally safe for nursing dogs, you should also be aware of any potential risks and adverse reactions, as well as alternative flea treatments that are safe and natural.

I personally recommend taking preventative measures, such as limiting outdoor exposure, regular bathing and brushing, and consulting with a veterinarian, to reduce the likelihood of flea infestations

After reading this article, I’m sure your dog will live a happy and flea-free life!

Found this post useful? Check out these other ones too:

You’ve made it to the end, but I hope it’s not the end of our journey. We want to hear your voice! Share your thoughts, problems, suggestions, or anything related to your dog in the comments section. And don’t forget to join our newsletter today too.

Share this post!
Zack Keithy
Zack Keithy

Hey, I'm Zack, the Chief Editor here. I was formerly a Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT) for a good 6 years before moving on to greener pastures. Right now, I am still heavily involved in dog parenting duties, and it is my desire to share all our knowledge with fellow dog owners out there! Connect with me on LinkedIn, or read more about Daily Dog Drama!

no more bad dog breaths banner