Causes of Flea Infestation
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Fleas are tiny insects that are barely visible to the human eye. Approximately 2.5 millimeters in length, fleas are unable to fly, but have very long legs that enable them to jump very high. Flea larvae are pale and measure approximately 3 millimeters in length, and they feed on the blood of animals and humans.
Fleas are commonly associated with household pets such as cats or dogs, but there are other ways they can find their way inside of your home. You may not even notice an infestation until you find red, raised, itchy bumps on your skin! Here are three ways fleas can get inside your home.
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1. Pets Can Bring Fleas In With Them
- Flea infestations can occur when fleas, carried by the host animal, hop off the animal and onto such surfaces as outdoor carpeting or furniture cushions.
- Even if you are not a pet owner, having friends who visit accompanied by their pets can result in them bringing along a supply of fleas.
- Fleas can also come from neighbors’ pets that roam and spend time in your yard.
2. Rodents and Other Wildlife Pests
- Yet another source may be visiting wildlife, such as rodents, opossums, and raccoons.
- If you have a rat or mouse problem, you may quickly find you have another problem: fleas!
3. Fleas Can Hitch a Ride on People or Their Things
- While fleas prefer animal hosts, they will also bite humans.
- They can also potentially be carried from place to place by a human.
- Fleas can also be hidden in furniture purchased from second-hand stores or yard sales.
What to Do If You Suspect You Have Fleas
While it may seem unimportant to find out why you have fleas, sometimes knowing why can help prevent future flea infestations! When you know how fleas can get inside your house, you can be that much more prepared to protect your home. Here’s what to do after you find fleas:
- Treat any pets you own for fleas.
- Talk to your vet for a range of options!
- Clean carpets, furniture, and wood floors with a vacuum cleaner that has a beater brush.
- This will help to remove many of the fleas inside your home, as well as removing their eggs.
- Try DIY flea prevention, in combination with the above steps.
- There are some substances, such as tea tree oil, that repel fleas and can help encourage them to leave.
- Be careful when taking second-hand items into your house.
- Inspect and clean each item before bringing it in!
The best course of action for complete eradication of fleas and their eggs is to call a professional exterminator. These trained professionals can assess the situation to determine the extent of the infestation, then apply appropriate treatments to kill the fleas and their eggs. An infestation of fleas can be miserable for you and your family, so take action as soon as you become aware of the problem. If you need help with a flea infestation, call Antworks today!