Tips For Finding and Killing Fleas
Finding fleas isn’t too hard. They usually find you and your animals. Fleas are sensitive to the vibrations of larger animals walking. They wait in grass or in carpet, jumping on passing animals in order to drink their blood.
If you find a flea on one of your pets, your house is in jeopardy of having fleas. Certainly, if your animals spend time in your house, they will transfer their flea problem into the house. It’s important you practice flea control on your animals, or else you soon will have an infestation. Controlling fleas requires the full treatment, killing them on your animals, in your house and in the yard surrounding the house.
Here’s what you need to do to find and kill fleas.
1. Check Your animal for fleas
When your dog or cat has fleas, they aren’t difficult to find. Check them around their neck and the base of the tail, or on their underbelly. Flea tend to crawl where it’s hard for the animal to scratch.
If you don’t see any fleas, but suspect the animal has them, there are more definitive tests. Rub a flea comb through your animal’s hair. This gets further down into the fur and will reveal any fleas living there.
2. Bathe Your Dog With Dog Shampoo
When you find fleas, the first step you need to take is to bathe your dog. Warm, soapy water will kill many of the fleas. You should repeat this process every week several times in a row.
Fleas lay eggs that can lie dormant and can be harder to get at. These eggs feed off of adult flea feces, so washing the dog repeatedly destroys the food supply for these larvae.
If your pet still shows signs of fleas, comb it with a flea comb dipped in alcohol or soapy water. This will get further into the fur, killing deeper down.
Once your pet is rid of fleas, make certain to keep them free of the little pests. Place a flea collar on your pet. Remember to put collars specifically for cats on your cat, because dog collars will make your cat sick. Also, kittens need special collars, because their system cannot handle the toxicity of an adult cat collar.
3. Check Your House For Fleas
Finding fleas in your house is a little more difficult. But if you find one flea inside, you are on your way to a major problem. This needs to be tackled sooner rather than later.
See if you can find “flea dirt”. This is flea feces made of partially digested blood. When you rub the floor with a wet towel, this will appear as red specks on the towel. Once again, this is what fleas use to feed their young, so they are preparing for a major infestation.
If you don’t find flea dirt but still suspect a problem, try the white sock method. Walk across your room with white socks on your feet. This way, if a flea senses you and jumps onto your legs, you can see it.
4. Kill the Fleas In Your House
Vacuum the rooms of your house. This will collect many living fleas. Place a flea collar inside the vacuum bag before you vacuum. This will kill the fleas that get trapped inside. Otherwise, they might survive and make their way back out. If you don’t do this, you need to replace the bag to get the fleas out of your house.
Vacuuming will kill about 1/3rd of flea larvae and 2/3rds of their eggs. That means the problem isn’t really solved. Vacuum several times over the intervening days to get rid of the next generation of fleas. This also tends to get rid of the flea dirt, which is an indirect way of killing the fleas.
Next, set out a bug bomb to kill your fleas and other household insects. It is best to do this when you are going away for the weekend, night or afternoon. If this isn’t possible, try to bomb each room at a time, or use sprays to spray specific rooms. The more thorough you can be, the less likely the fleas will return.
5. Remove Fleas From Your Yard
If your animal has fleas, then you have fleas in your yard. To end the problem at its root, you need to eliminate fleas from the yard. Use insecticides spread around the yard. You might do this several times to drive any remaining fleas out of the yard.