A flea infestation is one of the last things you want to deal with, and as we write this, North Carolina is in the thick of peak flea season. If you have outdoor pets, your chances of ending up with fleas in your home goes way up, but the presence of fleas isn’t always obvious. Because of the dangers that fleas can pose, we thought it would be a good idea to give you some of our knowledge on fleas so that you can identify any possible problems you may be having. Let’s learn a little bit about fleas.
How Fleas Get Into Homes
Usually, fleas get into the home through a domesticated animal, like a dog or cat. Housepets easily pick up fleas while roaming around in your yard and then carry them into the home. Once they’re in the home, fleas can spread quickly and easily, because animal fur isn’t the only material that they’re attracted to: they’ll also hide in carpets, rugs and any other crevasses that they can find. Once fleas find a food source they like to stick around and to them your house -with its easy access to a blood meal in the form of a pet (or even you)- is the perfect place to stick around for an easy, accessible snack.
How to Tell if You Have a Flea Infestation
If you do have cats or dogs that spend a lot of time outdoors, there are a couple of signs that your four-legged friends will exhibit if they’re dealing with fleas. Behavior like excessive or unusual amounts of scratching leading red skin and patchy fur are a warning sign that your pet has fleas. You can also actually see the fleas if you’re looking for them. They’re about two and a half millimeters long with six legs, and can jump.
Do Fleas Bite Humans?
It’s somewhat rare, but yes, fleas have been known to bite people. Bites tend to be concentrated around the feet and ankles (the areas most exposed during sleep) but they can also bite on the chest and legs if you have body hair in those areas. The bites themselves are red in color and can come in groupings or lines of 3 or 4 bites per cluster.
Diseases Fleas Carry and Spread
Fleas can carry and transmit several potential illnesses of importance to humans including:
- Cat scratch disease
- Tapeworms, which can infect your pet and occasionally humans.
Getting Rid of Fleas
There are a few things that you can do on your own to try and get rid of fleas:
- Vacuum the infested areas
- Wash all sheets and clothing in hot water
- Give special treatments to your pets that will help rid them of fleas
But even if you do each of these things, there’s a good chance you have a flea situation in your yard, which requires more serious treatment. That’s where City Wide Exterminating can help. With our Everyday Home Plus plan, we’ll take care of any flea problem that you’re dealing with, along with 23 other common home and lawn pests. Just schedule an appointment and one of our expert pest control technicians will be at your home to assess the problem ASAP, or at your soonest convenience.