From various canine diseases to poisonous foods, there are all sorts of potential threats that we need to protect our pooches from - including fleas and ticks.

Indeed, while most dogs will inevitably suffer from a flea infestation at some point during their lives, it's still important that we take steps to keep the pests at bay and - where necessary - give our four-legged friends the appropriate treatment if they have been affected.

The first thing to do is to understand fleas and the impact they have on our canine companions, and you may be surprised to hear that most of the critters you might find on your pooch will actually be those that usually affect cats.

Fleas tend to grow in the home environment before finding their way onto your dog, and this is because the eggs that female fleas lay on your mutt's coat are then transferred to your pet's surroundings - often their bedding and areas where they spend most of their time.

Once these hatch they will find their way onto your pooch, feeding off of its blood - this is what causes the irritation and itching.

Adult fleas will live and die on a dog over a period between seven and 14 days, but after this they'll be replaced by those that have grown in the surrounding environment - unless you've treated the home with products designed to tackle an infestation.

The best way to do this is with aerosols, powders and regular vacuuming to clear any fleas from the carpets and other surfaces.

There are also plenty of products to choose from to help cure your pooch if they're suffering from a flea infestation, including insecticidal collars, shampoos and tablets.

By taking a proactive approach to keeping fleas at bay and tackling them if they do manage to affect your canine, it is possible for our pooches to lead a hassle free lifestyle and not worry about pests gnawing away at them as they enjoy their premium dog food.

Written by: Hannah