If you are sure your pet has fleas you must treat this problem seriously.  Fleas can spread certain parasites and diseases as well as cause dehydration, anemia, or dermatitis reactions for pets as well as humans.  One adult flea can lay up to 50 eggs per day and reproduce to 1000’s within months. 

 

The first thing you need to do is treat the pet for immediate relief with a product that kills fleas on contact.  This can be in the form of a shampoo, spray, dip, or sponge on product.  Be sure to read labels and only use on the approved type, age, and size animals the product is approved for and follow the directions completely or the products may not work.  All pets in the home should be treated even if you only saw fleas on one of them.  Otherwise the fleas will just move on to the next animal. 

 

Treating the Environment Indoors and Outdoors

 

For treating indoors the use of flea bombs in larger rooms and household sprays in smaller rooms is the most efficient way to do this.  Again follow the instructions on the products to assure they will work properly.  All rooms in the home need to be treated including basements and rooms that the pets do not go in as the fleas may have been transported by people or simply jumping through the house.  Special attention should be made while treating bedding areas of the pets as these areas are usually where the eggs have fallen.  In most cases retreatment of the home in approximately two weeks is recommended.  Most products cannot kill the pupae stage of the flea’s life cycle and this way you will hopefully kill those fleas before they are able to reproduce.  If you have a heavy infestation you may also want to retreat at four weeks and three months.

 

For treating outdoors there are many sprays and powders that you can use on your lawn.  Again follow the instructions for the products you choose and retreat as the product recommends.  Be sure to treat the areas that wild animals tend to be in your yard especially under bushes and cooler areas.  Fleas tend to like long, grassy, moist areas so keeping up with your yard work and cutting your grass short is also recommended.

 

Prevention of reinfestations from occurring

 

Treating the outdoor environment and the use of preventative products on the animals will help prevent flea attacks.  Topical drops such as Frontline, K9 Advantix, and Hartz Ultra Guard will help with this.  These products should not be put on until a few days to a week after use of other flea products or a toxic reaction could occur.  If there is a heavy infestation in the environment a pet may still be found with fleas on them even while using these products as the fleas do not simply touch the animals and “poof” die.  They either need to feed on the animal or be on the animal for a while to absorb the chemicals that will kill them.  If the environment is heavily infested you may simply be seeing the “new” fleas on the animals.

 

 

What have you done when encountering fleas?