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Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs Review 2024: Pros, Cons & Verdict

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove


Our Final Verdict

We give Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs a rating of 4.1 out of 5 stars.


Review Summary

No matter how diligent you are, fleas are something almost every dog owner will contend with at some point. Because these tiny pests are so prevalent, there’s no shortage of prescription and over-the-counter treatments that promise to eradicate them.

Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs is easily one of the most popular and most trusted names in canine flea treatments. This over-the-counter formula is easy to apply and available at a wide variety of retailers, and each treatment lasts for an entire month.

With that said, a fast and effective flea treatment like Frontline Plus doesn’t come without a few risks. Here’s what you need to know before using this treatment on your own dog:

Image Product Details
Frontline Plus Flea Treatment Frontline Plus Flea Treatment
  • Kills adult fleas in less than 24 hours
  • Lasts for 30 days
  • Easy to apply
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    Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs — A Quick Look

    • Does not require a prescription
    • Formulas available for almost all sizes of dogs
    • Kills adult fleas in less than 24 hours
    • Last for 30 days
    • Available from a wide variety of retailers
    • Easy to apply on most dogs
    • Risks associated with improper dosage
    • More expensive than other treatments
    • May cause hair loss and skin irritation
    • Brand name: Frontline
    • Treatment type: Topical
    • Species: Dog
    • Breed: All
    • Weight: 5 to 132 pounds
    • Age: Over 8 weeks
    • Frequency: Monthly
    • Doses per pack: 3, 6, or 8
    • Effective against: Fleas, flea eggs, lice, ticks
    • Country of origin: France

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    Two Powerful Active Ingredients

    One of the features that sets Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs apart from other treatment options is its use of two active ingredients. Fipronil attacks several adult insects and other pests, including fleas, ticks, and lice. S-methoprene targets flea eggs and fleas that haven’t yet reached maturity.

    While an insecticide like fipronil will eradicate obvious adult fleas quickly, relying on this ingredient alone does nothing to fight flea eggs and immature fleas. By using these two ingredients together, Frontline Plus is effective against the entire flea lifecycle.

    Frontline Plus Flea & Tick Medium Breed Dog Treatment, 23 - 44 lbs

    Simple to Use on Most Dogs

    In the grand scheme of things, using a topical flea treatment like Frontline Plus is quick and easy. All you need to do is separate your dog’s fur between their shoulder blades — so you can access their skin directly — and squeeze the tube to apply the ointment. Once the treatment is on your dog’s skin, it will spread throughout their body and coat through a process called translocation.

    Yes, some dogs are resistant to having anything applied to their skin. However, clever strategies like using high-value treats or recruiting the help of a friend can make the process a breeze for even the squirmiest dog.

    Fast-Acting and Long-Lasting Relief

    If your dog is struggling with fleas, you know that the sooner you can tackle the problem, the better. Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs works incredibly quickly — most dogs are completely free of adult fleas within 18 hours.

    But Frontline Plus doesn’t just work fast in the beginning. This formula also offers extended protection against new fleas, lice, and ticks that may target your dog.

    Not Entirely Risk-Free

    Topical flea treatments are bought and used practically every day by dog owners around the world. However, it’s important to understand the potential risks associated with these treatments before deciding to use one yourself.

    Most risks associated with Frontline Plus are a result of using too high of a dosage. Usually, this happens when a dog owner miscalculates their dog’s weight (or just purchases the wrong formula).

    Using too high of a dose for your dog can result in side effects like:

    • Rash
    • Chemical burn
    • Vomiting
    • Lethargy

    Even when using the correct dosage, some dogs will experience relatively harmless side effects like hair loss or irritation at the application site.

    Frontline Plus Flea & Tick Small Breed Dog Treatment, 5 - 22 lbs

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    If you’re like most dog owners, then you have many questions on your mind concerning your dog’s health and well-being. Of course, treating a flea problem should be no exception!

    Here are frequently asked questions regarding Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs and how it works:

    How quickly does Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs kill fleas?

    In ideal conditions, Frontline Plus should kill all adult fleas within 18 hours following application. When it comes to ticks, owners can expect full results within about 48 hours.

    Keep in mind that a variety of factors can affect how well Frontline Plus works against your dog’s fleas, such as using the proper dose for your dog’s weight and ensuring that the treatment is applied correctly.

    Also, Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs will not treat fleas that are living in your carpets or your dog’s bedding. It’s possible for a dog to become re-infested because of fleas living in their home environment.

    How long  Frontline Plus last?

    Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs is formulated to last for 30 days. While waiting longer between treatments can result in re-infestation, applying treatments more frequently may cause your dog to “overdose” on Frontline Plus’s active ingredients.

    Does Frontline Plus Expire?

    According to Frontline, its flea and tick treatments do not expire. To ensure that your Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs doesn’t lose efficacy, the company recommends storing all treatments in the original sealed box at room temperature.

    Is Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs safe for cats or other pets?

    No, using flea treatments (and many other products) designed for dogs on a cat or other pet can be lethal. Instead, cat owners should purchase Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Cats.

    For owners of both cats and dogs, caution should be taken when using Frontline Plus or other treatments. Cats can come into contact with canine flea treatment by just grooming, cuddling, or playing with their dog companions. If you’re concerned about this potential risk, we suggest speaking with your vet about safer alternatives.

    Frontline Plus Flea & Tick products

    Does Frontline Plus work against all fleas?

    Looking at customer reviews for Frontline Plus and similar products, we’ve found some reports of fleas becoming resistant to the active ingredients used in these treatments. However, at this time, there doesn’t seem to be any concrete evidence to support this claim.

    Instead, according to Dr. Michael K. Rust, flea treatment failures are almost always caused by user error or quality control issues. If you feel like your dog’s fleas aren’t responding to Frontline Plus or similar products, please consult your vet to determine the next best step.

    Is a veterinarian’s prescription required to purchase Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs?

    No, Frontline Plus can be purchased from a wide variety of brick-and-mortar and online retailers. Many vets also sell Frontline and similar products to their patients, but a prescription is not required.

    Can my dog bathe or swim when using Frontline Plus?

    Yes. After applying Frontline Plus, you should keep your dog dry for at least 24 hours. After this period, however, they can swim, play in the rain, and bathe to their heart’s content.

    Before applying Frontline Plus, ensure that your dog’s skin and coat are completely dry.

    Which Frontline Plus formula should be used on dogs that are between weight groups?

    Frontline Plus bases its dosages on pet weight. In many cases, though, owners discover that their dog is at the very top or bottom of these weight groups.

    If you find yourself in this situation, we always recommend trying the lower weight group first — worst-case scenario, the treatment is not effective. If you jump straight to the higher dose, however, you risk poisoning your dog with too strong of a formula.

    If you have any questions about your dog’s weight or the appropriate Frontline Plus dosage, we suggest speaking with your vet.

    Frontline Plus Flea & Tick back packaging

    Do counterfeit Frontline Plus products exist?

    Unfortunately, yes. Frontline Plus and similar products sell for a premium price and are easy to counterfeit, making them an easy target for scammers. The U.S. government has even confirmed that these counterfeit products exist within the consumer market.

    To avoid purchasing counterfeit Frontline Plus, we recommend only buying from trusted retailers. That said, while applying counterfeit Frontline Plus won’t make a difference to your flea problem, it’s also unlikely to cause any harm to your dog.

    What the Users Say

    As with any pet health product, your veterinarian should always be your primary source of information. But to learn what other dog owners have to say about this product, we’ve compiled information from customer reviews across the internet.

    While Frontline Plus is a bit pricey, many owners say that it’s the most effective topical flea and tick treatment for the price. We noticed many happy customers mention the speed and longevity of Frontline Plus specifically. Some formulas may technically be more effective, but these slightly better alternatives almost always require a vet’s prescription or are expensive.

    On the other hand, though, we found many reviewers who mentioned their dog reacting to Frontline Plus. Most of these reactions are mild, causing slight irritation and dissipating after a few hours, but it’s still something to consider before buying this flea treatment.

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    After reviewing Frontline Plus Flea Treatment for Dogs, it’s easy to see why this formula is one of the most trusted for fighting fleas, ticks, and lice on our canine companions. Not only does it offer a mess-free application process, but it also goes to work quickly and lasts for an entire month.

    While some owners hesitate to use a topical flea treatment after reading about the associated risks, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of any health treatment before moving forward. Fleas can trigger allergies, leave open wounds on your dog’s skin, and transmit pest-borne diseases to your dog and your human family members. Frontline Plus can eliminate these concerns and is ultimately quite safe when used according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

    As always, if you’re not sure whether Frontline Plus is the right option for your dog, we recommend consulting your veterinarian.

    Have you and your dog ever dealt with a serious flea infestation? How did you solve it? Share your experiences, tips, and tricks in the comments below!

    Featured Image Credit: Frontline Plus, Chewy

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