Fleas are small and wingless pests that are common in homes with pets. They survive by ingesting the blood of warm-blooded hosts like dogs, humans, and cats. While many homeowners don’t want to think of how their pets can contribute to fleas, it’s vital to know about these creatures to avoid their infestation.
Fleas on cats and dogs don’t generally bite human beings, but if your home is heavily infested, they can bite you and your loved ones. Unfortunately, pets suffer the most from a flea infestation as they tend to scratch and itch a lot and can develop severe allergic reactions. According to most veterinarians, the most common medical problems they see from pet owners are flea infestations.
Therefore, if you care for the health and well being of your pets, it’s vital to take the necessary measures to eliminate a flea infestation.
How Pets Become Infested With Fleas
Fleas can thrive under a surprising range of conditions for a long time, even if there are no hosts available. For example, if your pet spends a lot of time outside in kennels and around other animals, it can pick up dormant fleas that will now have a host.
Once they enter your home, fleas can multiply well under favorable conditions, making it difficult to control them. Additionally, they hatch eggs in large numbers that remain in your home environment until they become adult fleas. You can find flea larvae or eggs in bedding, carpeting, furniture, and baseboards.
Signs Your Pets Have Fleas
Since fleas are small in size, it can be challenging to know whether your pet has them. However, if your cat or dog is always scratching, it may be a sign you have a flea infestation. To confirm, comb through your dog’s fur to check for small brown shapes moving around. Focus on your pet’s tail or ears, as fleas like to hide in these places.
Alternatively, you can perform the white paper test, which detects “flea dirt.” To do this:
• Place your pet on a sheet of plain white paper
• Comb through their hair for debris to fall on your paper
• Mix this debris with water, and if it turns to a dark red color, you have a flea infestation
The dark-red color is due to the blood present in the flea dirt. Other signs that show you have a flea infestation include:
• Increased itching
• Red, inflamed lumps
How to Get Rid of a Flea Infestation
Getting rid of adult fleas in your home is generally easy, but removing all the eggs can be challenging. First, you’ll need to treat your pet using safe and effective flea control treatments available in your local area. You can ask your veterinarian for recommendations on flea control products you can use on your pets.
It’s vital to note that multiple treatments will be required to eliminate fleas from your pets. Second, you’ll need to treat your environment to get rid of any eggs or larvae that may hatch to form new generations. For instance, wash any beddings or removable covers your pet has come into contact with to kill any eggs lying around.
You should also vacuum your house thoroughly and regularly, focusing on the areas where your pet spends most of its time. However, ensure you dispose of your vacuum bags as they can contribute to a buildup of immature fleas.
Lastly, hire a residential pest control company to fumigate your home and kill all eggs and larvae. Allied Pest Control is a San Diego extermination company that can help you get rid of pests in your home. Click here to inform our experts what’s bugging you.