We all know fleas make your pets scratch, but they can create a lot more problems if kept around long enough. Fleas are worse than people may think. They can cause allergic reactions, anemia and even cat scratch fever. Fleas are worse than many people think. Because of how fast fleas reproduce and spread throughout a home and yard, they are hard to get rid of, even if you think you are doing everything right. There are a few tactics to help your house become flea free and keep you and your pets happy and healthy.
Lather, Rinse, Repeat Your Pets
Washing your pets and treating them regularly starts a good trend of fleas knowing they aren’t a good host. Keeping up to date with your pets’ treatments and shots will prevent them from bringing all other critters into your home. If you do happen to see a flea on your pet, kill the flea and give your pet a bath as soon as possible because one flea usually means many are around. Your pets are more than likely the fleas’ mode of transportation into your house, so for both your sakes keep them clean of fleas.
Grab a Vacuum
Fleas will come into your house through your pets, but scatter once they are inside. Vacuuming all rugs, furniture, and floors will not only catch fleas that may be hanging around, but also any eggs or larvae that have been laid there. Vacuuming regularly will keep fleas from continuing to reproduce in your home and therefore work to get rid of an infestation. Be sure to empty the bag after every vacuum to prevent any eggs from hatching and staying in your home.
Hot Water Bath
All the bedding, covers and inserts that your pet uses should be washed in hot water as often as possible to ensure that fleas aren’t making those areas a habitat. If you are seeing a lot of fleas that aren’t just around your pet, it is a good time to also begin washing your bedding more frequently than usual. Washing all blankets, pillows, sheets, and small rugs will help keep fleas away. For anything that can’t be thrown into the washer, spray with flea treatments to help get rid of the pests. Make sure to read the label carefully on how to apply the spray, how long to let it sit, and if it is safe around children and pets.
There are some uncommon places that you might forget to check like in cabinets and cars. A lot of your car is covered in fabric, so if your pet travels anywhere with you be sure to vacuum and treat those areas for fleas as well. If they are living in your car they can easily come into your house on you or your belongings. Cabinets can be a good spot for fleas because it is dark and they wouldn’t be bothered often. Vacuum your cabinets as much as you can as well as treating them with a food safe spray to keep any fleas from hiding away. Unfortunately, your pet’s favorite toys could also be a problem. Soft toys will often harbor habitats for flea eggs and larvae, so if the toy can’t be easily washed or treated, throwing it out may be the best option.
Your house isn’t the only environment that fleas can live in. Your yard can provide a place for the fleas to live as well. Keeping your yard well kept and clear of any debris will help fleas stay out of your yard. Fleas don’t like direct sunlight, so having your yard as open as possible will help with killing fleas and not giving them a place to hide. Adding cedar mulch granules to the edges of your yard will not only repel fleas, but also repel other pests because of the red cedar oil in the mulch. Overall, just having your yard clean and free of a lot of stuff will help in preventing fleas from being welcome there.
Treating your pet and areas of your home yourself will hopefully keep the fleas out of your house, but sometimes the infestation becomes too big for a DIY treatment. Bringing in a pest control professional will allow the problem to be dealt with correctly and efficiently. There are various treatment options like fogging, sprays and powders. These all have different purposes and will be chosen based on what your home or yard may need. Remember that some treatments are fine to do on your own, but others should be left to the professionals to be sure everyone stays safe in the process.
Once you start seeing fleas, it is likely you are dealing with an infestation. Being vigilant in keeping your house and yard clean will go a long way in getting rid of them. All the work of keeping your areas clean can be undone quickly by a stray dog coming into your yard. Make these practices a habit and know that a specialist is the way to go if the problem persists.