How to Get Rid of Fleas

Are fleas infesting your home or your yard or both?  BUGCO’s Darrell Mather explains how to get rid of fleas in this video.  For professional, customer-focused help in getting rid of fleas, call BUGCO Pest Control at 281-240-2157 today!

Summary of How to Get Rid of Fleas

About Fleas and Your Pets

Pet Medications Are Effective in Helping You Get Rid of Fleas
Pet Medications Are Effective in Helping You Get Rid of Fleas

Fleas will bite you as well as your pets.  You can best get rid of fleas by preventing them from getting established in your home in the first place. Their bites can cause itching, and they can transmit tapeworms and bacteriological infections.

If you have pets, you should use anti-flea medications on a regular basis.  These might be chewable tabs for dogs like NexGard or topical liquids for dogs and cats like Revolution.  Adult fleas spend most of their time on the dog or cat, so failing to provide your pets with regular treatment will cause your other efforts to get rid of fleas to fail.  If you do treat your dogs and cats, these treatments are so effective that you’ll prevent infestations in your home.  A list of some of these medications is included in this article from the University of Kentucky Entomology Department.

Fleas will lay their eggs in your pet’s fur, but the eggs will drop off your pet, on your sofa cushions and chairs, and wherever your pets lay.  That’s why Darrell talks about the importance of vacuuming up the eggs as part of a strategy to get rid of the fleas.

After hatching, the worm-like larvae remain on your furniture or in carpets in places where your pets rest.  The larvae feed on feces left by the adult fleas, which tend to accumulate in those areas.  Before becoming adult fleas, the larvae spend several weeks as pupae in a silk-like cocoon.  The cocoon is impervious to insecticides, so even if you treat your home with an insecticide, you may need to retreat several weeks later to kill the fleas emerging from those cocoons.

Treating Your Home for Fleas

If you treat your home for fleas, please ensure that you pick up your children’s toys and pets’ water and food bowls before using the insecticide.  As Darrell says in the video, you should vacuum thoroughly.  Using your vacuum will remove many of the eggs, larvae, and pupae in your home.  It may also cause the pupae to emerge from their cocoons sooner and thus make them more susceptible to insecticides.  After vacuuming, seal the vacuum bag in a garbage bag and take it outside to the trash.

The University of Kentucky article recommends the following insecticides:

Popular consumer brands containing [recommended] ingredients include Raid Flea Killer Plus® and Ortho® Home Defense. Professional versions sold online include Precor 2000® Plus Premise Spray, PT Alpine® Flea Insecticide, PT Ultracide® Flea Insecticide, and Nyguard® Plus Flea and Tick Premise Spray. Most householders will find aerosols more convenient to use than liquids. Carpets and other surfaces treated with aerosols also tend to dry more quickly.

If you have fleas but don’t have pets, you may have wildlife entering your home or attic, bringing in the fleas.  It could be rodents getting into your home, squirrels, raccoons, or opossums living in your attic.  BUGCO Pest Control can remove rodents and wildlife from your home, and we offer exclusion services to prevent them from re-entering.

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    Transcription of How to Get Rid of Fleas

    – Hello everybody. This is Darrell with BUGCO Pest Control and trying to address some concerns that our clients have and some of the common questions that we get. So previously we’ve talked about termites, different types of termites. Their swarms and habits, lifestyle. We talked about roaches. A lot of different things.

    One of the things that I wanted to talk about today was fleas specifically and how do we get rid of fleas. Fleas are not ultimately difficult to get rid of, but it’s the matter of how they’re being introduced. So we have pets that go outside, we have cats, we have dogs. They’re going to go outside, they’re going to play around and then they may get these little hitchhiker fleas. They may bring ’em inside and before long we may have an infestation on the exterior of the home or they may have brought ’em in and we could have both. We have ’em indoors and outdoors, just outdoors or just indoors.

    So, how are we getting these fleas? We have little critters all over the place, whether it’s stray cats, stray dogs, rodents such as mice and rats, opossums, raccoons, even some bird species can carry fleas. So if we come out and say, for instance, we treated the yard, we are going to knock down that population, we’re going to kill them on site, or on the site I should say, and then we have to worry about treating indoors as well, should you have an indoor infestation. But what we’re really looking for is, the killing them is the easy part. Knocking down the population is relatively easy, but it’s just as easy to get them reintroduced.

    Fleas Are Brought into Your Yard by Wildlife and Pets

    Here’s the fact of the matter. We can treat your property, and then there’s the fact of the surrounding properties. We’ve killed the ones in your yard, but they don’t care about borders, boundaries, and fences. If you have an infestation in your yard, there is a 99% chance that there’s an infestation in the surrounding properties. So we need to kind of go to the source here, try to reduce the ability for them to reintroduce themselves. So we start talking about wildlife trappings, removing the wildlife, removing the rodents, controlling the rodent population because we could get rid of your problem, and then maybe a rat or a family of rats or a stray cat decides to run through your yard or decides to sleep in your backyard for the night. What’s going to happen is they are traipsing through the yard. Oh, and I’m sorry I forgot to add squirrels.

    Squirrels are also carriers of fleas. As they’re running through your yard, if they’re above your yard, a cat’s going to sleep there for the night ’cause you have a nice little cozy bush that’s going to hide it from all the other alley cats or whatever the case, what you end up having is you have carriers of these fleas, and as they traipse through your yard, these fleas are hopping off, they’re looking for new places to breed. What ends up happening is we have a cycle of eliminating the standing population and then a reintroduction.

    So we really need to, we could do one of two things. We could ensure that the trees are cut back so that there aren’t any mice or rats utilizing the trees, climbing up them and getting over onto your roof, and then introducing the fleas. It doesn’t have to happen down low. If they can find attic access, then the fleas will jump off, and you could have a population upstairs first and then find their way downstairs fleas. We want to try to determine what the carrier is and how they’re being introduced and then get rid of that. And if we can get rid of that, then we can find a long-term solution to getting rid of fleas in general.

    Vacuuming Makes Your Interior Treatment Much More Effective

    We could do interior treatment, but we’re relying on you as well to make sure that you’re vacuuming and treating any cats or dogs that you may have or other pets that may have an infestation of fleas. Routinely cleaning out their bedding is very important. And vacuuming. You cannot underestimate the power of a vacuum because it’s going to suck up the adults, it’ll get most of the eggs, but it’s not going to get all of them because they tend to attach themselves to the fibers and it is a little bit difficult for ’em to get up, even with the vacuum. But if you do it and it may seem excessive to some people, but if you do it in the morning and the evening, that would be ideal; at least once a day would be great. But if not, just a few times a week. Just vacuum, get up any potential adult eggs, and then when you’re dumping it out, don’t dump it out in the house just in case. You’re going to want to dump it outside.

    These are a few things that we can do to help reduce the flea population, is some of the things you can do to reduce the flea population in and around the home. And should you have any questions about treatment, you could always call BUGCO Pest Control at 281-240-2157 or visit us at www.BugCo.org. Thanks. ♪ BugCo ♪ ♪ We make the bugs go ♪ ♪ bugco.org ♪