If you want to know how to get rid of fleas, you’ll need more than just some basic dog-washing instructions. Combating a flea infestation isn’t a one-shot deal. Because of the flea’s life cycle, abilities, and habits, this war could last days, if not weeks. It’s not an easy task, but it’s one that must be completed correctly. Here’s everything you need to know about removing fleas from your home.
Killing fleas at the source
The majority of flea infestations are caused by pets. Fleas could have been picked up while your cat or dog was running around the yard, or from other animals during boarding or a play date. It doesn’t really matter right now. The first step is to address the problem’s source as soon as possible. If your pet continues to bring fleas into the house, treating the entire house is pointless.
Begin with a flea comb, paying special attention to your pet’s neck and tail, as these are fleas’ favorite spots. To kill fleas, comb them off and place them in hot soapy water. Then, make an appointment with your veterinarian to discuss flea control for your pet. They will be able to advise you on the best treatment for your particular flea infestation as well as the climate in your area. On the market, there are many safe and effective flea treatments for your cats and dogs. Topical, oral, spot treatments, shampoos, sprays, dusts, and dips are all possibilities. The most important thing is that you or your veterinarian consistently administer these treatments.
Remember to treat your pets for fleas on a regular basis. If you only treat one pet, the fleas will spread to your other pets, causing the infestation to spread. Many flea control treatments are only needed once a month or every few months. Oral and topical flea treatments begin protecting your pet before the flea population grows during “flea season” in the summer. To learn how to get rid of fleas, you must first embrace prevention.
Preparing the house for cleaning
After that, pick up all of the stray items from your carpeted areas. Clothes, toys, shoes, boxes, papers, and other items fall into this category. You want your vacuum to have access to as much carpet as possible. Items should also be removed from inside closets and under beds. You should also move furniture if at all possible. If the fleas are unable to get underneath larger objects that sit flush with the floor, such as dressers or bookcases, you can leave them in place.
Clearing your home of pets and children
If possible, you should also remove any other pets from your home, such as birds or fish, in addition to cats and dogs. Aquarium tanks and bird cages, as well as any water dishes or food bowls, should all be covered. Turn off any systems that help the pet’s environment, like aerators in fish tanks and heat rocks in reptile tanks. If possible, do this while the rest of the family is out of the house.
It’s best to destroy and discard all pet bedding if you have a severe flea infestation. Washing the bedding thoroughly in hot, soapy water to kill fleas and destroy their eggs and larvae is necessary for mild or light infestations. You’ll need to wash your pet’s bedding like this once a week for at least a month, or until you’re certain the infestation is gone. Even after that, it’s a good idea to wash your pet’s bedding on a regular basis to avoid reinfestations. You can also dry clean the bedding, but be careful not to spread fleas to your dry cleaner’s business and, as a result, to other customers.
Coming up with an attack plan for killing fleas
Take a walk through each room after you’ve cleared the house, looking for signs of fleas and their larvae. Fleas in a carpet can appear as small dark specks that vanish as quickly as they appeared. Fleas congregate in the areas where your pets spend the most time sleeping. They also avoid areas of the house that receive a lot of direct sunlight and prefer to hang out in areas with little foot traffic.
Keep an eye out for the dried feces and blood that fleas leave behind. These should be visible on your pet’s bedding as well as lighter colored rugs. Flea dirt is a dried secondary sign of fleas that looks like grainy specks of black pepper or black dandruff. Before becoming pupae, flea larvae feed on this flea dirt. Its removal eliminates the food source for a growing infestation. It’s crucial to keep an eye out for flea dirt. During the next step in how to kill fleas in the house, vacuuming, pay special attention to these specific breeding grounds.
How to get rid of fleas in the carpet
After you’ve cleared the area, vacuum the house thoroughly with a beater-bar style vacuum. Get under any beds or other furniture that you couldn’t move. Baseboards, heat vents, floor cracks, carpet edges, and room corners all benefit from corner attachments.
Pay special attention to the carpeting in areas where your pets sleep or spend a lot of time. Look for spots and furniture that collect a lot of pet hair if you’re not sure where they sleep during the day. In areas where you and your family sleep or spend a lot of time, use the same attentive approach. Fleas can spread diseases to humans, so make sure you do a thorough job not only for your pets, but also for you and your family.
Rather than just killing fleas, vacuuming will address a larger issue associated with infestations: flea eggs, larvae, and pupae. It won’t be enough to get rid of the adult fleas; you’ll soon have a new generation of biters to deal with. Vacuuming also aids in the removal of dried blood and feces, removing potential flea food sources.
Additionally, vacuuming encourages fleas to emerge from their cocoon early. This is an important step for completely killing fleas because the cocoon is resistant to insecticides. Furthermore, as you vacuum, the carpet’s nap rises. This allows insecticides to penetrate deeper into the fibers, where stubborn, developing fleas hide.
You’re not out of the woods yet
Vacuum the hardwood floors, linoleum, and tiles after you’ve finished with the carpets and throw rugs. Vacuum your furniture, upholstery, cabinets, cushions, pillows, and even your bed after that. If you’re using a disposable vacuum bag, it’s best to seal it tightly in a garbage bag and throw it away after use. Replace the bag with a new one. Vacuum thoroughly every other day until the flea infestation has vanished (typically 10 days to one month).
Steam cleaning is required for some severe infestations before vacuuming. The heat will kill almost all of the adult fleas, but it is possible that not all of the eggs will be killed. After the steam cleaning, vacuum every other day to ensure that fleas are killed as they hatch. Some people may still make it to adulthood. Even after steam cleaning and vacuuming, insecticides are almost always required as a third step in moderate to severe flea infestations.
Even so, most common flea sprays don’t kill flea pupae, so you’ll probably see a few fleas over the next two weeks. Continue vacuuming because it encourages fleas to hatch early, exposing their bodies to residual pesticides. As long as you’ve treated your pets, vacuuming should be enough to keep the lingering population under control. This is a lot of work, and it’s not as simple or effective as hiring a pest control expert.
How to get rid of fleas in your yard
Heavily shaded areas, crawl spaces where wildlife and feral strays may sleep, and sheltered enclosures such as dog houses are all factors that can lead to a large outdoor flea population on your property.
Putting on a pair of long, white socks that reach your knees is a good way to test your outdoor flea problem. Slowly walk around your yard, paying special attention to under decks, around vegetation, and any areas where your pets like to congregate. Fleas, like fleas indoors, avoid areas with a lot of foot traffic or direct sunlight. Fleas will jump onto your socks as you walk around the yard, where they will be easily identified due to the black-on-white contrast. You should do this a few times throughout the week at various times.
Remove low-hanging branches and brush, if possible, to allow more light into your yard. Flea populations will plummet as a result of this. Residual insecticides and growth regulators are sometimes used if treatment is required. Treatment should always be done according to the label’s instructions, and it’s best to leave it to a pest management professional. This will help keep you, your pets, and your family safe and bite-free while having fun in the great outdoors. To ensure that the source of the infestation has been eliminated, treat your home and yard for fleas on the same day you have your pet groomed.
The fastest way to learn how to get rid of fleas in the house
It’s not easy to get rid of fleas in your home. It’s time-consuming, and it’s not always successful. Even if you follow all of the steps exactly, you’ll probably have to keep killing fleas for the next two weeks or so. You don’t have to go through this alone, thankfully.
If you feel overwhelmed and need help with Pest Control, give us a call.
Smart Living Home Repair Services
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New York, NY 10016