Fleas are a problem almost everywhere, and the world hosts over 2,000 species of flea. Fleas can affect pets, their owners, as well as wild animals. They can jump, bite, and make our pets itchy, and when they find a way into our homes, they can bite us and make us itchy too.
These are the dark brown parasitic insects that are very small and can infest pets’ coats and skin. Fleas have a fantastic skill that allows them to jump to almost 150 times their length, and these remarkable jumping skills help them transit efficiently between the hosts and the environment. It is essential to treat fleas by choosing the right products for flea control, and one needs a well-designed program to maintain a flea-free environment.
A threat that can be more than skin-deep
Fleas are one of the most common external parasites found in pets and can be a significant problem for cats, dogs, and even humans. Though simple itching caused by fleas can be quite irritating, they can also cause more severe health problems. Fleas can transmit dog tapeworm to dogs, cats, and humans and spread several bacterial diseases.
Some pets can develop severe allergies because of flea bites, and these pets develop signs of itching, and sometimes these last long after the fleas are gone. The outdoor pets are most susceptible, and your pet can be exposed to these blood-sucking parasites anywhere, including your backyard, walks, and even your own home.
The lifecycle of a flea
Only around 5% of fleas live everywhere in the environment as an adult, while the remaining 95% live as eggs, larvae, or pupae. Therefore, it gets essential to break the lifecycle in the environment for effective flea control.
- Adult Fleas
Adult fleas can jump onto your cat or dog, feed on your pet’s blood, and then start laying their eggs.
A female flea is able to lay up to 50 eggs per day, and they might drop off in bedding and carpets before hatching.
Hatched eggs release larvae, and these larvae tend to move away from light, under the furniture, or deeper into the carpets before developing into pupae. The larvae can feed on organic debris and consume tapeworms at this stage, thus allowing them to become the host for tapeworm development.
How to get rid of fleas?
For successful flea control, you not only require treatment of the infected animals, but you also have to treat the entire infested premises. You can send your pets to the vet for treatment, and your pet should not be allowed to return unless the fleas are controlled in the infested area.
- Treatment of pets
There are sprays, dusts, pills, and collars that can be used to treat the pet; you should better consult a vet before purchasing a product. Whenever you buy any product to treat your pet, you should lead and carefully follow the label’s instructions.
- Control the environment
To remove eggs and stimulate dormant fleas, you need to vacuum the carpet 2-3 times a week. The infested animal bedding must be laundered in hot and soapy water and should never be left unwashed for an extended period. Clear and clean all the floors, including the closets, remove anything that should not come in contact with the insecticide like toys, pillows, fish, food, etc.
- Treatment of the yard
Sometimes fleas will live in your yard and may reinfest your pets or even bite you when you and your pets go outside. You can treat your yard with an insecticide that you apply through a hose attachment. Pay attention to your lawn, and keep in mind that fleas can even be found in the garbage can.
Prevention is better than cure, and many flea products are available today, which is why these options can be confusing. Not all products are registered for use; hence they may be quite dangerous. To get rid of fleas, you can keep your home clean and vacuumed, wash your pet’s bedding often, and if you happen to notice fleas, try to take immediate steps to eliminate them.
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