Getting Rid of Fleas for Good
This is the moment you have dreaded ever since your family adopted that cute new puppy. Your adorable pet is scratching repeatedly behind his ear and you know, even though you have not looked, that he has fleas. You look around at the living room carpet, the entrance mat and the kids’ stuffed animals laying on the floor thinking that you are doomed, your house must be infested.
Don’t despair, a flea infestation, although quite unpleasant, is not the end of the world. As you know, fleas are parasites that live off the blood of their hosts. What you may not know is that fleas can live for a while without feeding. Furthermore, during their developmental stages, their growth can be slowed down and delayed until a viable host is identified in the area through detecting levels of CO2 and movements of the floor. Yes, as you can see, fleas are tricky little buggers.
You know you have a flea infestation when you find adult fleas, either on your pet or jumping around on the floor. What might surprise you is that adult fleas represent only 5% of the flea population of your house. The rest are in various stages of development from eggs to larvae. When you want to eliminate fleas form your house, you need to target all of them: eggs, larvae, cocoons, and adult fleas.
The first step in getting rid of fleas is to reduce the probability of your pets attracting them and bringing them in the house. Prevention is always a good motto. If you can keep your pet indoor, do so. Otherwise, you can protect it with collars, drops, pills, and treatments. To find the best protection method for your fury friend, consult your local veterinarian.
The second step is to get rid of the adult fleas in the house. This will require several repetitive cleaning sessions, unless you prefer calling the professionals. You will need to vacuum every floor and fabric covered surfaces regularly, that means every day for a while. Some people suggest spreading finely ground salt on the carpet, a strategy that helps kill the fleas. The effectiveness of this step remains minimal and you might prefer steam cleaning the rooms, curtains included, before you vacuum.
The next step is to get rid of the eggs and larvae. Although vacuuming might help, chances are it will not be enough and you will need some chemicals to speed up the process. Pest control experts can help you choose the right fogging device for the size of your house and your specific situation. You need to know that fogging will require you, the children, and your pets, to vacate the house for a few hours. After this process, more vacuuming is needed. Make sure you change your vacuum bag after each session, discarding it in an outside garbage can.
Getting rid of fleas is a tedious process, especially if you do it all on your own. Be prepared to repeat each step several times over a few weeks to be completely rid of your unwanted guests. If you chose to rely on specialists to do the hard work, be aware that some companies may not guarantee their work if you still have pets in the house, especially if they go outside.
Finally, if your pet is there to stay, your best bet to avoid a flea infestation is prevention followed by intense cleaning sessions. The combination will take time and effort, but in the end, your house will be free of fleas.