Why are fleas a pest?
Fleas are parasitic insects and different species live on particular animals i.e. cat fleas and dog fleas. The human flea is very rare in the UK due to improved hygiene and standards of living. Surveys have shown that most fleas found in the home are cat fleas.
Fleas are visible to the naked eye and are reddish/brown in colour. They are instantly recognisable by their extremely long hind legs and flattened shape. This allows them to move quickly through hairs.
Infestations can spread quickly especially as a female can lay up to 50 eggs a day. Most eggs will fall off the pet and hatch wherever they are in the house, usually where the pet sleeps. Only a small number of the flea population in a house will be on the animal at a given time.
Flea eggs can lay dormant for long periods of time but will be stimulated by vibration and heat. When this happens an adult flea will emerge and seek food (often your ankle). This is why people can experience flea bites when they move in to a property that has been vacant for some time.
Signs of fleas
Signs of fleas are very distinctive. If you have an infestation of fleas you may have some of the following problems:
Flea bites - these will show as a swollen itching spot with a single puncture point at the centre. They are usually found where clothes are in close contact with the body e.g. ankles. Bites often appear in clusters or lines of two bites, and can remain itchy and inflamed for up to several weeks
Scratching pets - pets scratching more than usual. and on inspection you find fleas or small black flecks
Sightings of fleas -you may actually see fleas in your home, on yourself or on your pets
How to prevent an infestation
Following the below tips can help prevent you getting fleas in your home:
Ensure pets are regularly treated for fleas. Once applied to the animals skin it will provide protection from fleas (and other pests) for up to two months. A vet should be consulted for the correct treatment for your animal
Vacuum living areas including furniture on a regular basis
Regularly vacuum areas where any animals sleep (disposing of the bag / contents into an outside bin)
Wash bedding and animal bedding in a hot wash regularly
How to treat an infestation
If you find that you have fleas in your home you may be able to eradicate the infestation yourself using special insecticide for the treatment of fleas. If you choose to try it yourself you may find the following advice useful:
Ensure that all animals allowed inside your home are treated for fleas before any treatment is started. You should see your vet for a suitable treatment for your pet
Keep floor space clear (especially carpeted areas)
Keep food and pet food tidied away
Vacuum all affected areas thoroughly (including cracks, crevices and the edge of carpets) and dispose of the contents into an outside bin. This will help stimulate any eggs/fleas and help the treatment work better
Fleas can be difficult to totally remove by yourself. In order to eradicate fleas effectively a thorough and extensive treatment maybe required. That is where we come in!
Donkill Pest Solutions deal with all Flea problems, so if you would like a free survey please contact us on
0843 523 0537 or 07443476749
(Free site surveys are subject to availability and are not to identify if you have a infestation in the first place (this can be mostly be done over the telephone))