Sometime in their lives, most pets will end up with a flea infestation. There's really nothing you can do to stop that, because they can easily be picked up from other animals, in the park or any public space that your pet goes to.
There are things that you can do to minimize the chance of getting a flea infestation in your home though, and there are plenty of flea treatments available when your pet does pick one up.
As we all know, fleas are very small. In fact, unless you are really looking for them, you probably won't see them. There are some tell-tale signs that you can look for though. One of the major ones is if you pet is scratching more than they usually do, since fleas are very itchy. Also, although there aren't many fleas around these days that actually use humans as a host, your pets fleas can and will still bite you, so you may find flea bites on your own body.
If you suspect a flea infestation and want evidence, part your pet's fur so that you can see down to the skin. If there are fleas you will see them as little black specks. And at that point, you should begin flea treatment.
Fleas can jump 8 inches, 150 times further than their own height. That would be like a human covering three football fields in one leap. There are a number of different flea treatments out there, and to get the best one for your pet, it is best to talk to a pest control expert or go and see your vet. They will be able to tell you the safest and most effective treatment in your situation. For instance there are some treatments that are good for dogs, but that can be dangerous for cats because of the ingredients in the cure. Others are just general rules of thumb. For example, a flea bath is a good solution for a dog but cats generally hate getting wet so that might not be the best thing for them. There are lots of alternatives though, from lotion to tablets which kill fleas. Caution should be taken however, as some chemical solutions do risk harming your pet at the same time as killing the fleas.
Strange as it may seem, the most important part of flea treatment is not actually treating your pet, it is treating the environment.
The reason for this is that it is only adult fleas which live on your pet, while their eggs grow in carpets, bedding, the garden, skirting boards, basically everywhere else that your pet goes.
The upshot of this is that even if you get all of the fleas that are currently living on your pet, it won't be long before they get a new infestation from the new fleas growing to maturity around them.
A female flea can lay up to 2,000 eggs in a lifetime.The most effective way of getting all of the maturing fleas in the environment is fumigation, which should be performed by qualified pest control experts. There are things you can do as well, such as vacuuming the carpets and upholstery, and spraying insecticide, however this does not guarantee that you will get all of the flea eggs, larvae and pupae.
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