Fleas are tiny little insects. They are only 1/8 of an inch long, but they can jump up to 8 inches vertically. Fleas don’t fly, which means you’ll have trouble seeing them even if you have thousands of them. Unless you have a terrible infestation, you may not know what’s biting you inside your house and making your pets scratch themselves nonstop. A flea infestation could make your life miserable, so you should know how to tell if you have fleas and how to avoid fleas altogether.
What do fleas look like?
Fleas are small, wingless, parasitic insects. They’re flat, dark brown or black, and can jump a distance of over one foot, or roughly 200 times their own body length. These tiny jumping pests show up between fur on the bodies of cats and dogs. The most obvious sign of a flea infestation that people always associate is scratching. When a dog or cat has fleas, they will constantly scratch to alleviate a constant itch. Fleas look like dark peppered spots when you find them on pet fur. Using a flea comb on your pet’s fur exposes any fleas that are hiding and not as easily visible. If you find fleas on your pet, immediate action should be taken by calling your veterinarian.
Most people think of flea infestations as solely a pet-related problem. Although it’s most likely to be from pets that bring them indoors, however, flea infestations can be found in homes without pets. Another common hiding place for fleas is rugs and carpeting. According to Flea Science, 83% of fleas develop deep within home carpeting. They burrow into the fibers where they can avoid light and low levels of humidity. Once larvae become adults, they jump onto a passing host such as your dog, which is when you begin to see the infestation.
From a distance, fleas can be misidentified as springtails. Springtails are also jumping insects that are roughly the same size and can infest homes. You’ll know that you have springtails when you see large groups of small dark insects that jump. Although springtails are not destructive and do not cause harm to humans or pets, homeowners find them alarming because of the large numbers that occur seemingly out of nowhere. Springtails are found where moisture is prevalent. That’s why you can find them where there is water damage within your kitchen or bathroom.
How did fleas get into my home?
Fleas are a growing problem in California. We have an ideal climate for them to thrive, and they’re increasingly resistant to control measures. Cats and dogs are the primary carriers of fleas.
When they are exposed to other pets that have fleas in places such as dog parks, kennels, veterinarian offices, and visiting other homes where infested pets live, they’ll bring the fleas back to your home. Wildlife, including squirrels and deer are common carriers of fleas. If your pet comes into contact with them, they could become infested with fleas. Be sure to have regular visits with your veterinarian to ensure that you’re taking all of the right steps to prevent or get rid of flea problems.
You don’t have to have pets to develop a flea problem. Fleas can enter your house on your clothing, shoes, and more. While pets are more likely to bring fleas in, they can hitch a ride on anything. And as long as they can feed, you’ll develop a problem.
It only takes a few entering your house to develop an infestation. A female flea can lay eggs quite soon after feeding. While it takes time for the eggs to hatch and the larvae to mature into adult fleas, just the fact that they can lay eggs so fast means they breed out of control extremely quickly.
Are fleas dangerous?
Fleas are so small that once you notice them, you most likely already have an infestation in your home. The good news is that fleas do not damage wood, so they’re not a threat to the structure of your home like dreaded termites and carpenter ants. The bad news is that fleas can be a threat to the health of your family and pets. Flea saliva has a chemical in it that causes an allergic reaction. You might think those red, itchy bumps are mosquito or bed bug bites, but they may be flea bites. Worst of all, fleas can carry tapeworm eggs, which means that when they bite you, they send those eggs into your bloodstream, giving you a tapeworm infection. They can also transmit certain diseases, and in pets, cause anemia. For all these reasons, you need to know how to prevent fleas from getting into your home.
How can I prevent fleas from getting into my house?
If you’re wondering how to avoid fleas, you’re not alone. The best method for flea control is prevention. Vacuum your house frequently and have your carpets professionally steam cleaned to kill and remove eggs, cocoons, and larvae.
If you have pets, contact your veterinarian for recommendations on flea treatment and prevention medication. Some topical flea medications can rid both your pet and house of fleas, assuming you don’t yet have a massive infestation. Don’t forget to use non-toxic preventatives in their hiding places, and wash their bedding in hot water. If you find active fleas in your home, it’s going to be nearly impossible to get rid of all of them on your own. Contact O’Connor Pest Control for fast and professional flea control services.
How can O’Connor Pest Control get rid of the fleas in my home?
At O’Connor Pest Control, we provide flea removal and prevention services to ensure that you don’t have to deal with the headache that is a flea problem. We offer one-time and recurring services for your pest control needs. We will work within your budget to make sure your pest issues are resolved. If you’re searching for pest control with same day service for your home or business, then you’ve come to the right place. O’Connor Pest Control has been in business for 60+ years, and we continue to be committed to excellent pest control and customer service.
Give us a call or fill out the contact form on this page for a free inspection!