The Best Pest Control For Fleas (Charlotte Exterminators)
July 17, 2020
Our dogs give much of themselves to us. They make us happy when they are sad, they are there when we need a hug, they play with us when we get bored. Their eyes give us those loving looks as if to say we mean everything to them. They are more than just our best friends, they are family. So when we see them suffer, we suffer with them.
Fleas can make our beloved pets suffer, so as pet lovers, we need to know how fleas behave to protect our pets and ourselves, from these unwanted guests. Fleas are probably a pet owner’s worst nightmare. They are the most common pest problems related to cats and dogs. While we exert all efforts to stop fleas from getting into our houses, it is our pets themselves who bring them in. Of course, it is no fault of their own since they are only acting like all pets do, so if you do not have fleas now, tomorrow might be another day.
Now, what can we do when there are fleas in the house? The leading pest control company in Charlotte, Go-Forth Pest Control, is here to give you a few tips on how to get rid of fleas.
So let us take a closer look.
There are 2,500 known species of fleas and can be found in every part of the world, save for Antarctica.
Fleas are tiny insects that are reddish-brown in color and grow about 0.12 inch to ⅙ inch long. They are the size of a pinhead. Fleas are parasites, feeding on the blood of warm-blooded mammals, including humans. This is called hematophagy. Their bodies are flattened sideways, with long claws on all of their six legs. Fleas have simple eyespots with one biconvex lens. Some fleas do not have eyes at all.
Fleas have strong legs that are great for jumping. They can jump from one host to another, with the ability to jump 6 inches vertically, so latching on to a host who happens to pass them by is easy.
Adult fleas can consume blood that is as much as 15 times their own body weight. They have piercing mouth-parts that are designed for sucking blood. They do not fly but have strong legs that make them excellent jumpers. Adult fleas prefer hairy hosts, so their body shapes are perfect for moving through the hairy bodies of their hosts.
Adult fleas can reproduce very quickly; they can lay as many as 2,000 eggs in their lifetime.
Fleas undergo 4 stages and complete metamorphosis. They start as eggs, then to larvae, to pupae, and finally the adult stage.
When an adult flea lays an egg, the egg would take 2 days before it hatches. When they hatch, they would turn into larvae. Larvae look like tiny worms. They will remain in this form for 5 days, after which they will get inside cocoons. They will remain there until they sense a blood meal and will emerge as adults.
Fleas Can Transmit Diseases
Fleas attack mammals like dogs, cats, hamsters, and even their owners. Humans are not exempted; fleas will attack if faced with no other choice. Fleas have mouth-parts that bite, and their bites are very itchy and could even lead to infection.
You are lucky if itchiness is all you get. Fleas are also known to spread nasty diseases that can be fatal. Some of the diseases that fleas are known to transmit include, but are not limited to, Rickettsial diseases, bartonellosis, the bubonic plague, murine typhus, tularemia, and tungiasis.
Fleas prefer to feed on dogs’ and cats’ blood, but if none of them are around, they can attack humans. Fleas have high body temperature, so they cannot survive long and breed on humans that are why they do not really like us. They also cannot breed and lay eggs on humans, which is another win for us of some sorts.
Flea Hiding Places
One way to fight back against fleas is to know where to find them. Fleas can hide all over your home. Typically, these are areas where your pets love to relax or play. Check for these areas if you suspect that you have fleas at home.
1. Carpets are the best place to look at. Carpets look like hairy pieces of cloth, so these are the favorite place for fleas to stay. When fleas lay eggs on your pets, these eggs usually fall off after latching on to your pets. Since fleas are great jumpers, they also just wait for a host to pass by and jump on to that new host.
2. They can be hiding in dirty clothes that remained untouched for a long time.
3. Indoor plants are good hiding places for fleas as well, where they stay and hide undisturbed.
Signs That You Have Fleas
Always observe your dog and look for signs for fleas regularly. When you find your dogs scratching non-stop, they might be carrying fleas. Flea bites are very itchy, so inspect further. Get a flashlight and look for fleas on the hairy parts of your dog or cat. Fleas hide on your pet’s armpits, tail, ears, inner thighs, and belly.
You may also check your dog’s fur for the presence of flea feces. Adult fleas’ feces are mainly blood and look like little specks of dirt. You can check if these are flea feces and not just dirt by using a paper towel to pick them off. See if they spread out like stains, if they do, then these are flea feces.
These signs will be helpful to you in getting rid of fleas.
The Most Common Types Of Fleas
Here is a list of the common types of fleas:
1. Cat fleas - This one is the most common. They are called cat fleas, but they also feed on dogs, humans, and other animals’ blood. Cat fleas normally hide on the carpets, indoor plants, and dirty clothes. They lay their eggs on pets, though these eggs fall off and can scatter all over the house.
2. Human flea - These are fleas that feed on human blood. They like to hide in the hairy parts of the human body, especially on people who do not practice good hygiene.
3. Sticktight fleas - Dogs, cats, birds, and even humans are their usual victims. They bury their heads into the skin of their hosts, making them difficult to pull apart from the skin.
4. Springtail fleas - Springtail fleas are very good jumpers due to their strong legs. They can jump up to four feet. What is different about them is that they do not attach themselves to animals unless they detect a skin infection. Skin infections make the skin damp and therefore attractive to them. This is because they thrive in damp areas.
5. Rat fleas - This is the most widely spread among all its genus. There are two kinds of rat fleas: the Oriental and the Northern rat fleas. The Northern rat fleas came from Europe while the Oriental rat fleas were originally found in Egypt. The length of the Northern rat fleas is about 3 to 4 mm. They have eyes on their heads. Oriental rat fleas, on the other hand, can grow to about 2.5 mm in length and have strong legs. Plus, their body shape is perfect for jumping. Oriental rat fleas caused the bubonic plague that swept Europe during the Middle Ages, killing millions.
We would not want fleas to be near our pets, that is now clear to us. Here are some tips on how to get rid of fleas.
1. Vacuum clean areas that your dog or cat frequents. Perhaps on the couch, on the carpet, or on your pet's bed. This would pick out both the adult fleas and the eggs. After vacuuming, seal the vacuum cleaner’s bag and throw it away properly.
2. Use diatomaceous earth to kill the fleas. This will inflict tiny cuts in their bodies and leave them out to die. Diatomaceous earth is made of fossilized remains of diatoms, and they look like tiny shards of broken glass. You can purchase this from a garden store near you.
3. Another option is table salt. When fleas get in contact with salt, they get dehydrated and eventually die.
4. Protect your pet by spraying a mixture of equal parts of water and apple cider vinegar. Place in a spray bottle and spray some on your pet’s coat.
5. Sprinkle some boric acid on places where your pet frequents. Boric acid will dehydrate the fleas and kill them. Use a shaker to make it easier for you.
If all else fails, do not worry. All you have to do is to call the best pest control company in the Triangle region, Go-Forth Pest Control.
We will help you get rid of fleas once and for all. Our expert technicians will make sure of that. For more information, or to request for a free quote, call us now! Our friendly operators are waiting.