Capstar Flea Tablet Review (**2018 Edition**)

Looking for a decent Capstar review? You're in the right place.

In this Pest Strategies guide, you'll learn:

  • How to use Capstar
  • What Capstar is good for and what Capstar ISN'T good for
  • The pro's and con's of Capstar
  • How it compares with popular competitors (Seresto, etc)
  • Safety aspects
  • And much more!
capstar review

What do you do when your dog comes home from playing in the yard and won't stop scratching?

Of course, this is a trademark signal that your pet might be the latest victim of a flea infestation, but this poses the bigger question.

How to get rid of them, and how to get rid of them FAST?

This is where Capstar for Dogs comes in.

This company promises to make a product that acts as a sort of bug bomb on your dog or cat, clearing out parasites with one pill. How do their promises hold up to the results this product gets?

Keep on reading to take in our full guide!

SECTION: 1 The Rating

While many consumers view this medication as comparable to a flea drop or serum, this actually isn't the case:

Capstar is actually more of a one-and-done parasite eliminator, NOT a preventative measure for pests like fleas and ticks.

Think of this product like duct tape: it works spectacularly in a pinch, but you'll eventually need to invest in a long-term fix.

Because of its delivery method, this pill will flow through your pet's body and deliver poison to parasites within mere hours. Pills can be given once per day, and can be administered to either dogs or cats.

Pest Strategies Rating

Does exactly what it says, with some slight side effects.

SECTION 2: Pros and Cons

Let's take a moment to weigh out the good and the bad in terms of how Capstar can work on your pet.

Pros

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    Can be used for both dogs AND cats
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    This product claims to kill fleas in 4 hours for dogs, 6 hours for cats
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    Pet owners can administer this medication once per day

Cons

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    These are pills, which can be a hassle for pets to swallow
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    Kills adult fleas, but not flea eggs or larvae
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    Expensive tablets that are used only as a quick method of relief
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    Slight side effects can make pets itch and/or act erratically

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Click here to check out our exterminator search tool where we instantly send you free quotes from trusted (and thoroughly vetted) exterminators in your local area. 

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SECTION 3: The Key Features

What are some of the main characteristics that Capstar brings to the table?

Check out our cheat sheet below for the full scoop.

A Departure From the Usual

This product is unique in that it has escaped the usual flea serum setup. These are caplets which need to be ingested by your dog. This, in and of itself, can be a burden of a task to complete, but with a few tricks, it can absolutely be done.

It Just Takes One Bite

The pill dissolves inside your dog and flows to all areas of its body, forming a toxic layer to fleas when they begin to feed. The solution will paralyze the fleas until they starve to death and fall off of your dog.

Rapid Action and Results

The active ingredient attacks the nervous system of the flea or tick when it bites into your dog or cat in order to feed, so your pet will be flea-free in 6 or 7 hours.

Daily Dosage

The dosage is designed to be administered daily in the form of one pill. The caplets are sold either in a small 6-count or much larger 60-count package. 

Ensure that you only feed your pet one dosage per 24 hours. As always, read the package and follow the directions closely.

SECTION 4: The Review

When evaluating products, we use five criteria:

  • Company Reputation: Is the company who makes this stuff reputable?
  • Active Ingredient: What's actually inside the product that makes it work?
  • Easy Of Use: How easy is it to use the product?
  • Pet and Child Safety Rating: Should you worry about your pets or children around the product?
  • Overall Effectiveness: At the end of the day, does the product actually work?

Reputable Company/Customer Service:

Novartis is the manufacturer of Capstar for Dogs.

This company is a Swiss pharmaceutical giant founded in 1996 and currently headquartered in Basel, Switzerland.

While Novartis does oversee the manufacture of some animal health products, their main focus is on human pharmaceuticals, in the form of generic prescriptions, over-the-counter meds, and vaccines.

One thing to note was that they were recently approved by the FDA for a gene therapy cancer treatment. It's clear that Novartis is a on the upper echelon of reputable companies, so that's a plus in our book.


Active Ingredient:

Nitenpyram, which works by targeting and arresting the nervous system of external parasites like fleas and ticks.

Its orally administered and it makes the blood within the animal toxic. When the fleas feed, they die from the active ingredient.

In 2003, a report was published that looked at how effective Nitenpryram as a single dose. Upon the initial treatment and over the next 24 hours, 100% of the adult fleas were killed. From the 24-48 hour mark there was a 98.6% reduction in adult fleas. After 48 hours of the initial treatment went down to 5% adult kill rate. 

As for the eggs, there was a 95% reduction through the first 72 hours. To be clear, this was becuase the adults were killed and stopped laying them.

Nitenpyram, doesn't actually kill flea eggs on your pet, rather you'll need a cat flea shampoo or a dog flea shampoo to ensure the eggs that remain are removed.

The only drawback was that it caused itching, biting, and scratching 7 hours after the initial treatment.

Ease of Use:

If you can get your pet to take a pill, this will be a cinch.

However, many users have reported that getting their pets to swallow the caplet is a struggle, which is why this product isn’t as favorable as the usual serum solutions. 

Is This Pet and Child Safe?

As mentioned in the "Active Ingredient" section, pets do show signs of increased itching and scratching for the first 7 hours after the initial treatment, but is safe for cats and dogs 4 weeks or older (and 2 pounds or heavier).

The active ingredient Nitenpyran, is toxic to humans, so make sure to keep it locked away away from your children.

Overall Effectiveness:

At the end of the day does Capstar work?

Yes.

Capstar tablets serves a very specific purpose to kill adult fleas currently feeding on your cat or dog.

After applied you'll have about a 24 hour removal window to clean, sweep, and eradicate the infestation in your home.

This means that the fleas living around your home in the floors, pet bedding area, etc will have to be removed through the use of flea sprays and other methods of removal

It’s advised to use this only to deliver quick results to a pet that has an abundance of fleas or ticks, and not as a daily routine. 

Do not use this as a primary method of removal as it may make your pet sick after continued usage. Please consult your veterinarian for specific questions on your pet's breed and how Capstar may react with their body.

SECTION 5: “How Does It Compare Against Competitors?”

Just so you're able to make a complete decision, have a glance at the way Capstar for Dogs performs in relation to its competition.

  1. K9 Advantix II
  2. Seresto Flea Collar
  3. Adam's Plus Flea and Tick Shampoo

Capstar for Dogs vs. K9 Advantix II

While it may seem like these two products are comparable, they are actually used for two entirely different things. They both kill fleas and ticks, but K9 Advantix II is more of a preventative treatment as its rated to repel fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes.

Capstar is best used to knock out a large flea infestation within a short time span to give you ample time to treat an infested area (usually your home).

Also, K9 Advantix II can ONLY be used on dogs, whereas Capstar can be taken by cats as well.

Click here for a full review of K9 Advantix. 

Capstar for Dogs vs. Seresto Flea Collar

The Seresto Flea Collar is used to continuously apply a low dose of insecticide on a dog over a period of time to kill adult fleas and ticks over an 8 month period of time.

Capstar pills are small tablets to be ingested orally by a dog, and the Seresto collar is an actual collar with medication inside to be dispersed over intervals of time.

The Seresto collar is meant to provide lasting protection, whereas the Capstar pills serve as one quick boost of flea protection.

From a usability perspective, you can't get much better than the Seresto collar (click here to check it out).

Capstar for Dogs vs. Adam's Plus Flea and Tick Shampoo

These products are similar in that they can be used by a dogs and cats in a variety of sizes, but the similarities mostly stop there.

Capstar uses a chemical nerve agent to attack parasites, and Adam’s Plus Shampoo uses natural aloe, lanolin, and oatmeal to clean your pet and wash away the fleas and eggs at the same time.

The ingredients in the shampoo work to keep your pet flea- and tick-free for 28 days, while Capstar’s pills work to clear out problem fleas fast, but on a one-time basis.

We do recommend also combining the use of Capstar products with a good shampoo to ensure all the dead fleas have been removed from your pet.

Click here for more information on cat flea shampoos.

Click here for more information on dog flea shampoos.

SECTION 6: The Bottom Line

Not only is this product a departure from the usual serum that spreads along a dog’s body, but each caplet is designed to be a daily dosage to combat live fleas on dogs.

This is a huge contrast from other types of flea and tick control products, which normally come with a once-per-month treatment schedule.

This product is designed as a quick fix for fleas on your dog or cat. In this way, it separates itself from the other brands, which strive to provide long-lasting protection against new fleas instead of the one-and-done approach which Capstar has taken.

Review Summary
  • Company Reputation
  • Active Ingredient
  • Ease of Use
  • Pet and Child Safety
  • Overall Effectiveness
4.1

Summary

Capstar tablets are a fairly popular flea treatment and when used properly can be a great addition to a total flea removal plan. Capstar has been documented to knock down fleas on both cats and dogs and provide a 24 hour window of flea relief after treatment. Capstar works best to quickly kill active adult fleas directly on cats and dogs. Followed up with a flea shampoo to remove eggs and proper cleaning of infested areas, you should be enjoying a flea free pet soon!

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