If your dog has fleas, then you might notice him scratching himself more frequently, and the itching is usually caused by the fleas actively biting your dog. He may also appear restless and uncomfortable.
Adult fleas are easy to detect on dogs with light-colored hair coats but may be more difficult to visualize on darker-colored coats, so you will need to part your dog’s fur to look at his skin or use a flea comb to look for fleas. In some cases, you may also find flea dirt which looks like small curly pepper granules.
Over time, your dog may begin to lose fur and develop bald patches over his lower back. He can also develop a skin infection as a result of frequent biting, licking, and scratching. Dogs can also have allergies to flea bites and develop intense itching and redness as a result. In cases of severe infestations, your dog can become anemic due to the blood loss from flea bites. This is especially dangerous in young puppies and small breed dogs.
Fleas can carry a parasite called tapeworm that can invade your dog’s digestive tract when your dog eats and swallows a flea. The tapeworm sheds eggs by releasing small egg-containing segments that are shed in your dog’s stool. If you see a small yellow or white segment in your dog’s stool that looks like a grain of rice, then it is possible that your dog has fleas as well as tapeworm.