How do I get rid of fleas
in my home? Treating the flea problem.
Let's get on with the job of getting rid of fleas in your house and on
your cats or dogs.
Battle Stations. You can win this war.
How do I break the flea life cycle?
vibrations from vacuuming also stimulates the fleas to emerge from their
cocoons and thus they will be exposed to the insecticide that will be used
THIS IS WHAT YOU ARE VACUUMING UP (even though you can't see them):
Fleas that are living on your cat or dog lay eggs. The eggs drop off your pet and land on your carpet or floor.
Vacuum them up. Get rid of the flea eggs in your carpet.
The eggs hatch and become larvae. These little worm like creature have hair like bristles that enable them to move around. They avoid the light and move to crevices, corners, under furniture, in cracks between floor boards and along baseboards.
Vacuum them up. Get rid of the flea larvae in your carpet.
After a while the larvae pupate. This means that they spin a cocoon around themselves and begin a change. In the cocoon they are changing into adult fleas. It is similar to a caterpillar which spins a cocoon and then emerges as a butterfly.
Vacuum them up. Get rid of the flea pupae in your carpet.
The more of the pupae you vacuum up
the better the outcome. The cocoon surrounding the developing flea is
water tight and impervious to insecticides.
When you have finished vacuuming dispose of the contents of your vacuum cleaner completely.
STEP 2 - Spray Insecticide
Flea Treatment For your
IGR is the most important part of the whole flea control process
floors, soft furnishings
and places your pet sleeps with an aerosol, flea bomb or fogger
that kills flea eggs, larvae and
emerging adult fleas. Check the label of sprays for active ingredients.
Use one that contains IGR.
Make sure you spray into every nook and cranny and pay special attention
around baseboards and under rugs and furniture.
Spray under beds and under couches etc.
Developing fleas avoid the light and make their way to dark areas.
It is difficult to suggest flea control products worldwide as insecticide laws vary from country to country. Below are a few suggestions of products that contain IGR.
Precor 2000 Plus (US & Canada)
Vacuuming is very important pre insecticide spraying but not post spraying. Do not vacuum for at least two weeks after spraying.
What is IGR?
IGR is short for Insect Growth Regulator. IGR is Birth Control for Fleas. This protein works on the developing flea eggs and larvae and stops fleas from developing to maturity so they cannot lay eggs.
Flea bombs and flea foggers containing IGR are very effective at killing fleas but the insecticide does not always reach under beds, furniture and rugs. Flea bombs and foggers are designed to be let off in the middle of a room. Be sure to move what furniture you can so as to enable the spray to penetrate carpets and flooring beneath. It is possible to use a flea bomb or fogger as you would a regular hand held aerosol by not clicking the button into the lock position thus enabling you to spray under furniture without moving it first.
Precor 2000 Plus is a hand held flea fogger. It has both a knockdown agent and a long lasting insect growth regulator. The fog can be directed under furniture and appliances.
Follow the instructions that come with the flea spray, flea bomb or fogger and remember to remove all fish, reptiles and other living creatures from the room. This treatment may kill them.
After spraying the insecticide try not to vacuum for about two weeks as the IGR component will have a residual effect.
Read This - Very Important
It is important to note that while the fleas are in the pupae stage (in their cocoons) they are not affected by insecticides. The cocoons are watertight and protect the developing flea. This is why you may think you have killed all the fleas and larvae in your home but two weeks later a new flea infestation may occur as new fleas emerge from these cocoons. If this happens you will need to repeat the process.
Don't Forget about your Yard and Garden
Do fleas live in the yard?
Yes, you must also tackle your yard and garden. There is no need to purchase special yard spray as you can use the same spray that you sprayed your house with. Spray around where the pet sleeps, in crevices, gravel and sandy areas. If you live in a high set house you will need to spray under the house. Spray patios, verandahs, kennels and nooks and crannies. Areas of the yard which are in sunlight should be OK as the larvae tend to avoid bright places.
You can also let off flea bombs or flea foggers under your house on a windless day.
Next wash all of your pets bedding and soft toys. Shake them well and hang them in the sunlight to dry
Home Remedy to kill fleas?
You may not like using insecticides and chemicals around your house but a home remedy to kill fleas will not work. You will have to use an insecticide and more importantly you should use an insecticide containing IGR. Once you have broken the flea life cycle you will not have to spray on a regular basis. Once the fleas have gone you can put the insecticides away for ever.
STEP 3 - Treat your pets
How do I get rid of fleas on my cat or dog? Which flea products do I use on my pet?
The older generation of flea control products (Flea powders, flea collars and dips) are now completely obsolete. The latest treatments are top-spots or tablets, which are much safer for both pets and humans.
Top Spots are applied to the skin, usually between the shoulder blades and disperse through the skinís oils. Some of the top spot products available are:
Advantage, Advocate, Frontline and Revolution.
Revolution also prevents heartworm, ear mites and hookworm.
Advantix and Frontline Plus also prevent ticks.
flea and lice treatment
treatment gastrointestinal worms
treatment and prevention of lungworms in dogs
control of ear mites in cats and dogs
control of sarcoptic mange in dogs
control of Demodex mites in dogs
Do not use on sick, debilitated, or underweight cats. Do not use on cats less than 9 weeks of age or less than 1kg body weight.
Advantage Multi is the same product as Advocate as above. It is marketed under Advantage Multi in the US, Canada and New Zealand
Tablets for Killing Fleas on Dogs and Cats
Comfortis is a FDA-approved, chewable, beef-flavored tablet that rapidly kills fleas and prevents flea infestations on dogs and cats for a full month. Comfortis starts to kill fleas within 30 minutes of administration and will kill 100% of fleas within 4 hours.
Mild side effects can occur. For more information
Comfortis is currently approved for dogs and cats in the
US. Not yet approved for cats in Australia
treatment of flea infestations on dogs, puppies, cats and
kittens four weeks of age and older and two pounds of body
weight or greater as well as for pregnant or nursing dogs and
Fast acting formula begins working within 30 minutes and will kill almost all adult fleas within four hours of ingestion.
If your pet gets re-infested with fleas, you can safely give another dose as often as once per day
For more information visit the Capstar site.
You may think that top spot treatments or tablets are expensive but it can be false economy to use anything else. Most of the top spot products or tablets advise that you use them monthly but once you have broken the flea cycle in your home you will be able to use them less often. Of course keep in mind that a visiting pet or a neighbor's cat in your yard can start the cycle all over again. The same can be said if you visit a friend's or relative's house with your pet. Your pet may pick up half a dozen fleas and once again the cycle begins.
How can fleas harm my cat or dog?
Fleas feed on your pet's blood and make your cat uncomfortable A heavy infestation can cause it to become anaemic and unwell. Flea infestations have been known to kill kittens. Some individual animals are allergic to flea saliva and this causes the pet abject misery with constant scratching and self mutilation. The most common allergy dermatitis in cats and dogs is a flea allergy. Read more on Flea Allergy Dermatitis. Fleas also spread tapeworm from one animal to another.
I would advise that you have a chat to your veterinarian or vet nurse about which flea product is most suitable for your pet.
Two weeks later and the fleas are back!!!
Expect to see a few new fleas emerging for up to two weeks. These will be the fleas that were in the pupal stage during treatment. (The developing fleas in their cocoons)
Remember that while the fleas are in the pupae stage (in their cocoons) they are not affected by insecticides. The cocoons are watertight and protect the developing flea. This is why you may think you have killed all the fleas and larvae in your home but a week or two later you are still seeing adult fleas.
You may have to repeat the treatment for house and pets again after a couple of weeks if you are still seeing large numbers of fleas, especially if the initial infestation was particularly heavy. Remember, you can get rid of fleas forever!
Once you have treated your pets and house for fleas try not to let them come in contact with other animals that are infested. Politely ask visitors not to bring their pets to your house as one visit by a flea infested dog or cat can start the flea cycle all over again.
For maintenance... Watch your cat or dog for tell tale scratching and re-apply the top spot if you see even a single flea. Don't delay as fleas multiply very quickly. Cats and Dogs rarely scratch themselves unless they have a flea or a skin condition. Vacuum thoroughly any area your pet goes. Wash bedding and toys often.
What is a flea cycle?
The flea population of any given
area comprises of 50% eggs 35% larvae 10% pupae and only 5% biting
Different breeds of cats
with pictures, description and information on each of the listed domestic cat
Which breed would you choose?
Norwegian Forest Cat
Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds