Among the numerous inconveniences to which these valuable animals are liable, I hardly know one more troublesome to themselves, or vexatious to their owners, than this common one of fleas. It is, therefore, a very frequent inquiry made, how they can be destroyed, or how they can be prevented from accumulating? Washing the body well with soap-suds, and directly afterwards carefully combing with a small-toothed comb, are the most ready means of dislodging these nimble gentry. But it must be remembered, that the previous washing is only to enable the comb more readily to overtake them: the water does not destroy them; for dogs, who swim every day, still have fleas. These animals are hardy, and soon recover this temporary drowning; the comb, therefore, is principally to be depended on for their caption before they recover. But as washing is not, in many instances, a salutary practice, and in many others is a very inconvenient one, so it becomes a matter of considerable moment to prevent their accumulation without these means.
Innumerable other means I have tried to drive away fleas, but the only tolerably certain one I have discovered, is to make dogs sleep on fresh deal shavings. These shavings may be made so fine as to be as soft as a down bed ; and, if changed every week or fortnight, are the most cleanly and wholesome one that a dog can sleep on. But, where this is absolutely impracticable, then rub or dredge the dog's hide, once or twice a week, with very finely powdered rosin ; if simply rubbed, add some bran. Fleas are not only troublesome, but, by the irritation they occasion, they produce a tendency to mange.
The reader is referred to the advertisement on page 408, for remedies for various ills with which dogs are afflicted.