Is This A Flea?

July 22, 2022

A single flea can bite its host up to 300 times a day. Fleas don’t particularly like to feed on humans, but they will if they are hungry enough. If you have pets, urgent itchiness is one of the first signs that’ll tip you off to a flea problem. If you don’t have a pet to take cues from, you are still at risk of getting fleas in your home. These pests live on rodents, birds, and other wildlife which can introduce them into your Charlotte yard and home.

Fleas are tiny and if you’ve never seen one, they may be difficult to spot. It’s hard to catch a flea up close because they quickly use their powerful legs to jump away from danger. Flea eggs and larvae are nearly impossible to see because they look very much like a single speck of dirt, but the adult flea can be observed without magnification.

Fleas are wingless parasites with laterally compressed bodies that swell when they’ve taken a blood meal. Their tiny body is shielded with a hard exoskeleton which makes them difficult to crush and helps them hide in carpets and in the cracks of wooden floors. Adult fleas are typically shiny and black. Their bodies engorge after they've eaten and then they look reddish-brown.

a flea in pet hair

Fleas In Charlotte Can Be Dangerous

Fleas have a history of spreading the bubonic plague, and the plague can still be passed on to humans. However, you’ll most likely see it in your pets first. Symptoms will show within one week of being exposed to the bacteria. Luckily for both us and our furry friends we now have antibiotics that cure this infection. Fleas are also known to carry diseases such as murine typhus and cat-scratch fever. 

Furthermore, some pets and people are susceptible to flea allergies. Animals that have a flea allergy will break out into hives and welts, usually starting at the base of their tail. It’s not the bite that causes the allergic reaction, but the flea's saliva. If a flea-ridden animal chews or licks itself, it can spread the saliva across its skin and cause more and more irritation. Typically, veterinary intervention is required.

Six Ways To Keep The Fleas Away 

Flea control starts with flea prevention for your Charlotte yard, home, and pets. Below are six ways you can prevent fleas from becoming a problem in your home. Flea treatment for your yard and pets goes a long way to preventing fleas from entering your house.

How to keep fleas away:

  • Make sure to wash pet bedding regularly on high heat.
  • Puppies, white dogs, and cats are especially susceptible to flea infestation. If you have a pet that is experiencing a flea problem, you can give them a dish soap bath. Some dish soap kills fleas, but it does not prevent them.
  • Dogs and cats that are old enough for flea prevention should be kept on it all year, not just the summer months.  Speak to your pet’s veterinarian for options.  
  • Vacuum rugs, carpets, tiles, and hardwood floors daily to control fleas.
  • Plant flea-repelling plants in your yard or keep them as house plants. Plants that discourage fleas are pennyroyal, catnip, chamomile, lavender, spearmint, and chrysanthemums.
  • Lemon scents deter fleas. You can make your own spray by boiling half a lemon, rind, and all, in two cups of water. Let the solution sit overnight and then use it on hard surfaces and furniture.
  • These are just some ways to deal with these difficult pests. Fleas' lifecycle is one of the reasons they're so hard to control and eliminate. A flea begins life as an egg, turns into a larva, then creates a cocoon called a pupa before it turns into an adult.

They will wait inside their pupa until a food source is discovered. Once a host is in reach, they emerge and immediately begin to feed. They can stay in their pupa for up to six months.

How To Get Fleas Out Of Your Home For Good

Flea control has many layers to it. You have to deal with what you find inside, but also think about what’s outside as well. If you have house pets, you’ve added another layer of concern. At Aruza Pest Control, we know you’ve got a lot on your plate already, so if you are feeling overwhelmed by fleas, give us a call. Our Charlotte pest control experts are standing by to help you and your family get rid of pesky fleas all year round.

 

Tags: charlotte pest control | flea prevention | flea dangers |

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