Did you know that there are 2,200 different species of fleas?
That's right. And 19 of these species chose to settle in Florida. To be more specific, they may be lurking in the coat and tail of your beloved Fido or Fluffy
Cat fleas, in particular, are among the most common insects found in the Sunshine State. No, you don't have to have a cat to find these infesting your home, as they can hop from one animal to another or even to a human.
That said, it’s vital you get rid of fleas before they completely invade your home. Keep in mind that a single female flea can reproduce like crazy, laying as many as two dozen eggs a day!
Ready to say goodbye to all those fleas in your house? Then make sure you follow these steps we’ve outlined!
1. Get Rid of Fleas with Fluralaner or Fipronil Treatments
Fleas are among the most dangerous insects for pets, as they can cause flea bite dermatitis. This can then result in severe itching, forcing your pets to scratch away at their skin non-stop. Ultimately, all that scratching can lead to open wounds and infections.
Before this happens, kill fleas on your pets swiftly using oral or topical flea and tick killers. Fluralaner (Bravecto) and fipronil (Frontline) are two such products. Bravecto comes in chewable tablets while Frontline is topical.
While both are safe for pets, a study found that Bravecto can kill up to 99.9% of fleas. Whereas Frontline's effectiveness against fleas was 97.3% at the end of the study.
Either way, these treatments are some of the ways on how to kill fleas on your pets. Before administering them though, be sure to ring up the vet first. Ask them which one is best suited for your beloved furred family member.
2. Give Your Pets Regular Baths
If you want a more natural approach to flea removal in pets, add apple cider vinegar to their bath water. This won't kill fleas, but it makes your pets less appealing to the parasites. Fleas don't like the taste and odor of the vinegar.
What's important is to give your furry pals regular good, old-fashioned baths. Anything with lather will kill these parasites.
3. Use a Flea Comb
Flea combs are super fine-toothed combs that can be helpful for trapping fleas and eggs. Plus, their tightly-spaced teeth can also help remove dirt and debris from your pets' coat.
When using a flea comb, make sure your pet's fur is dry. It may also be easier to first use a regular comb to unravel any tangles.
Before grooming your doggo or cat, fill a deep bucket with some hot, soapy water. You'll use this to wash and kill fleas and eggs that get trapped between the comb's teeth.
The best place to start is the head, working your way to the neck, shoulders, back, and tail. Proceed to comb your pet's chest, sides, and tummy. Fleas love to hide under the chin, so make sure you pay more attention to this area.
Don't forget to comb down Fido's or Fluffy's legs and paws. Also, check the areas between the claws as there may be a few fleas and ticks congregating there. Finally, give your pet a second combing for optimal results.
4. Wash Clothes, Sheets, and Fabrics in Hot Water
Wash everything you can put in the washing machine, especially stuff your pets use. These include their towels, pillows, beds, blankies, and toys. If they sleep on your bed, be sure to give your own bedding, sheets, pillows, and pillowcases a thorough wash too.
Washing rugs (even those that your pets don't seem to sleep on) is another key step on how to get rid of fleas in your house.
You should also let these soak up the heat in your hot dryer for about 20 minutes. Heat level that exceeds 95 ºF has shown to kill cat fleas and their pupae.
5. Deep Clean Your Home
Fleas can also hide in the gaps or cracks on your floors, upholstery, and other pieces of furniture. These insects also thrive in dark places, so they may be living in your walls' baseboards, too.
You can catch these pests, along with their eggs, larvae, and pupae, with a powerful vacuum cleaner. Make sure you dispose of the vacuum bag after every cleaning session. The vibrations from your vacuum can cause flea pupae to hatch.
Mop your floors with a soapy solution to get and kill the pests and their eggs. For hardwood floors, make sure the solution you'll use won't damage, warp, or fade them.
If your couches have detachable cushions or throw pillows, see if they can be machine washed. Then, vacuum the seats, paying careful attention to their edges and the sides. Fleas and their unborn offspring can be hiding and thriving in these spots.
6. Invest in Professional Flea and Tick Control Services
With fleas being able to reproduce at such a fast rate, an infestation can be difficult to control. While the tips above can help eliminate them, they need time to produce results.
The quickest way to get rid of these pests is with the help of flea and tick control professionals. These specialists will create a custom treatment plan based on your flea situation. The flea control program will also keep these parasites from coming back.
7. Keep Your Pets on Flea Preventive Treatments
After killing fleas with Bravecto or Frontline, use a flea collar to further lower your pet's risks of infestations. One of your options is the Bayer Seresto Flea and Tick Collar. A study found that this collar reduced flea counts by 95% and tick counts by 90% for up to eight months.
Moreover, the vets who conducted the study confirmed the product's safety in dogs and cats. They only noted minor observations on the treatment area.
The study concluded that this flea collar is a "sustainable long-term preventative." It's effective both as a treatment and prevention for flea and tick infestations.
By making your pets less attractive to fleas, you can worry less about these bugs hitching a ride on your pets' fur. This can then help prevent the parasites from making their way once again into your home.
Just to be sure, give your dogs a thorough inspection after walks before entering your home. Especially if they played in woody or grassy areas.
Rid Your House and Pets of Fleas before They Develop Anemia
Keep in mind that fleas are voracious bloodsuckers, as they can consume up to 15 times their body weight. So, imagine the blood loss your furred pals can suffer from with all those fleas hiding in their fur. The longer it takes you to get rid of fleas, the higher your pets' risks of developing anemia.
That said, make sure you follow these tips we have on eliminating fleas as soon as possible! And once you're ready for professional flea removal, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us. That way, we can start with your custom flea control plan right away.