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Ask a Vet: Capstar Flea Tablet Review 2024 – Pros, Cons & Verdict

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By Dr. Joanna Woodnutt

capstar flea tablets review vet answer

Vet approved

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Written by

Dr. Joanna Woodnutt

BVM BVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Our Final Verdict

We give Capstar Flea Tablet a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Review Summary

Editor Rating: 4.5/5

Ease of Use: 5/5

Effectiveness: 4.5/5

Price: 4/5

Capstar flea tablets from Novartis are designed to kill adult fleas in both dogs and cats, without the need for a trip to the vet. It comes in an easy to give tablet and kills fleas within just 15 minutes. Designed for those times when you spot your pet itching and need a quick fix, one tablet a day for 6 days is proven to be fully effective at killing fleas.

Capstar is a one-hit wonder for an immediate solution to your pet’s flea problem, but it does not provide long-term prevention. It targets adult fleas, but not eggs or larvae. Capstar also comes with a relatively high price tag for a short-term fix.

Novartis are a well-established and highly regarded pharmaceutical company based in Switzerland. They produce a large number of pharmaceutical products for both the animal and human health markets.

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Capstar Flea Tablets – A Quick Look

Capstar Flea Oral Treatment for Dogs

  • Suitable for both cats and dogs
  • Does not require a veterinary prescription or a visit to the vets
  • Easy to give in a simple tablet
  • Kills fleas fast within just 15 minutes
  • Safe to use in pregnancy and lactation
  • A simple, easy-to-use, quick solution if your pet has fleas
  • Can be given with or without food, and can be crushed if necessary
  • Only kills adult fleas
  • Only lasts for 24 hours on your pet
  • Cannot be used in cats or dogs less than 4 weeks of age, or less than 2.2 pounds (1 kg) in body weight
  • An expensive product that only provides a short-term solution
  • May cause some temporary itching or irritation after administration
  • Does not provide long term protection against fleas and ticks


Capstar 11.4 mg cat is for the treatment of fleas in cats 2-25 pounds.

Capstar 11.4 mg for dogs is for the treatment of fleas in small dogs 2-25 pounds.

Capstar 57 mg dog is for the treatment of fleas in dogs over 25 pounds.

  • Pet type – dogs and cats
  • Product dimensions – approx. 12 x 10 x 6.5 cm
  • Pet life stage – adult
  • Allergen information – none
  • Quantity – pack of 6 tablets
  • Storage information – store in a cool, dry place that’s out of reach of children and pets
  • Specific uses – parasites
  • Legal category – AVM-GSL

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Proven to Kill Fleas Fast and Effectively

The active ingredient in Capstar flea tablets is Nitenpyram, which works by targeting the nervous system of parasites such as fleas. It is administered orally and absorbed into your pet’s bloodstream. When fleas bite into your pet’s skin to feed, they ingest the toxic active ingredient, causing them to become paralyzed and subsequently die and fall off your pet.

One study found Nitenpyram to be 100% effective at killing fleas in both dogs and cats within 8 hours of administration. Another study found that fleas started to fall from animals within just 30 minutes of giving Nitenpyram.

Capstar Flea Tablets Are Easy to Use

Capstar is easy to give to your pet in one simple tablet. It can be given directly into the mouth, or with food, and crushed if necessary. It can also be purchased over the counter or online without a trip to the vets or a veterinary prescription, meaning you can access this product when you need it without delay.

The daily dosage of Capstar is one tablet per day, to be given on any day that fleas are seen on your pet.

Capstar Flea Oral Treatment for Dogs_blue

Capstar Is Safe

Capstar is very safe for your pet. The manufacturers report that there are no adverse reactions, and that it is safe to give alongside other commonly used veterinary medicines, such as vaccines, antibiotics, and other flea products. Capstar is also safe for pregnant or lactating females. But if your pet does take any regular medication or suffers from ongoing health problems, always speak to your veterinarian before giving Capstar.

There can sometimes be a small amount of itching/irritation shortly after giving Capstar to your pet, but this is a common side effect and is temporary. If your pet has any side effects after being given Capstar, contact your veterinarian for advice.

Capstar Is Not a Long-Term Method of Preventing Fleas

Capstar provides a quick, simple solution when you spot fleas on your pet. It’s also useful when you have a new pet coming into your flea-free home that may be carrying fleas on their coat, like a stray cat. But it does not provide your pet with long-term prevention against fleas and could make your pet sick with long-term use. Capstar only targets adult fleas on your pet and does kill the eggs or larvae that may be on your pet’s skin/coat or in your home. It, therefore, can’t get rid of an existing infestation.

If your pet has fleas, even after using Capstar, it’s important to give your home and any bedding your pet uses a thorough clean. Vacuum underneath and behind furniture, wash any bedding on a 60-degree cycle, as well as use a home treatment designed to kill fleas in the environment.

You will need to speak to your veterinarian about a suitable long-term parasite prevention program, and they will be able to discuss the different options with you to find the best product for your pet.

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Is Capstar expensive?

Capstar is not the cheapest flea product on the market, and its effectiveness and ease of use does come at a price. It falls into the middle price bracket. It certainly isn’t the cheapest, but it’s not the most expensive either when compared to other flea products.

capstar for dogs tablet

Can I give Capstar to my puppy/kitten?

Capstar is only safe for cats and dogs over 4 weeks of age and weighing over 2 pounds in body weight. Puppies or kittens over 4 weeks of age and weighing over 2 pounds can safely be given Capstar flea tablets.

Does Capstar work?

Yes! Capstar is proven to work quickly and effectively to kill fleas in as little as 15 minutes after administration. It is 100% effective at killing fleas within 8 hours. 

Does Capstar only kill fleas?

Yes, Capstar only kills adult fleas. It does not target flea eggs or larvae and does not kill ticks or any other external or internal parasite in cats or dogs.

shetland sheepdogs sitting with cat
Image Credit: Lisjatina, Shutterstock

Is Capstar safe?

Yes, Capstar is very safe for cats and dogs. There are no reported adverse reactions, and it can be given to pregnant or lactating females. There can be some itching/irritation after giving Capstar, but this is common and temporary. If you do notice any side effects after giving your pet Capstar, contact your veterinarian for advice.

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What the Users Say

As we have already discussed, Capstar flea tablets are a fantastic, fast-acting, quick fix for dogs and cats with fleas. Online reviews of this product are very positive, with many pet owners choosing it because it works quickly, with itching/scratching stopping very shortly after administration. Most users do point out that this is only a short-term solution and tend to use it as a top-up or short-term treatment before continuing with long-term flea prevention methods.

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Capstar is different from lots of other flea products on the market for cats and dogs in that it works in a daily, oral dose rather than a monthly treatment. Does Capstar work? The simple answer is yes, Capstar is proven to be fast and effective at killing adult fleas in dogs and cats in as little as 15 minutes. But it does not prevent further flea problems and does not target flea eggs or larvae, so you won’t get rid of an infestation that’s already started. It does also come with a price tag, but it is a simple and effective short-term solution to flea problems, and no trip to the vet is necessary!

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