What Do I Do if I Find a Flea?
It’s pretty normal to see your dog scratching behind his ear. You’re not going to think much of it even if you see it a few times in a row. What about a few days in a row? How about scratching nonstop for weeks? You’re bound to lean in and check out what’s going on at this point, and look! Something jumped off of your pooch’s fur and hid somewhere. You’ve seen a flea in action. Now what? You sure don’t want fleas tormenting your poor pet. But… Is one flea a cause for concern?
The Myth of “Just One Flea”
Fleas are serious problems. A single flea can hitch a ride on you, your pet, or even a piece of furniture and get to work. These insects can lay a scary amount of eggs. A single female flea is capable of laying 50 eggs a day. If they get a blood meal, your single flea can turn into a whole family in a hurry. What happens to those 50 eggs, though? Once laid, a flea egg will dislodge and land somewhere in your home. It could be your carpet, your bed, your couch… Even on you. These eggs hatch in a matter of days and will start sucking blood almost immediately. After hatching, fleas can live, feed, and breed for more than a hundred days.
Every flea drinks a ton of blood each day – Fifteen times its body weight. While that’s only a little over a drop of blood, twenty fleas is twenty drops of blood. These bites also swell, which can cause secondary infections and hair loss. That goes for bites on you, too. Tapeworms also inhabit fleas. If one happens to get in your mouth, or your pet’s mouth, that’s a worse problem.
Just think of how much scratching your pet does with his mouth! One flea is already a problem. Fifty more fleas every few days? No way. Don’t wait to act.
What Can I Do?
Prevention is key, but once you notice fleas, it’s time to clean and vacuum. Vacuuming can decimate flea larvae and egg populations. You’ll want to vacuum cushions, beds, baseboards, and floors every day until they’re gone. Be sure to throw your vacuum bags out weekly, too. Steam cleaning also kills eggs, larvae, and adults. It will miss some, though.
If you think your pets caught fleas in the yard, keep them inside until you solve the problem. You’ll have to manage yard animals, too. For example, shut down bird feeders for a while, and seal trash cans with tight lids. Keep this up until the infestation is gone.
Bathe your pets with pet-friendly soap and use fine metal combs when brushing them. Your vet can suggest treatments for your pet as well. These include collars, injections, sprays, and more.
The Most Important Step
Fleas are durable, and they can ride on lots of animals. If you think you’re at risk of having fleas, don’t wait – Act. What do you do if you find a flea? Act fast, clean up, keep your pets indoors, and most importantly… Call Consolidated Pest Control today and tell us about your situation. We’ll help you treat your home – inside and out. You can manage your flea problem and say goodbye to itchy days for good by working with us.