Your Pet and Your Home Has Fleas

5 Signs Your Pet and Your Home Has Fleas

Fleas can turn the most mild-mannered pets into frantic balls of fur scratching up a storm. Fleas also have no qualms about feasting on you either. Read below to learn ways to know for sure whether you’re dealing with these nasty pests or something else.

Increased Scratching

Flea infestations can make your pet scratch themselves frequently, sometimes putting them in danger of scratching themselves raw. 

Check through your pet’s fur or feathers for small, round and dark creatures crawling or jumping around. Darker hair makes this more difficult, but if you bathe your pet you might be able to see the fleas in the water.

Allergic reactions to flea saliva in bites cause intense irritation and scratching. The more a pet scratches itself, the faster bald patches form, so it’s important to pay attention to how much your pet is scratching.

Bite Patterns and Observations

Another method to check for fleas is to look for multiple bites on your pet’s belly and on your own body. Fleas will often bite our lower legs and feet, so be sure to examine your legs carefully as well. 

Fleas tend to bite three times per feeding unless they are interrupted and have to release each bite before continuing. Flea bites look like red bumps that worsen as you scratch. Seek medical attention immediately if you experience shortness of breath, swelling, severe itchiness or hives. Anaphylaxis can result in death if not treated appropriately.

Find Flea Dirt

As gross as it is to think about, an easy way to find fleas is to follow their droppings. Fleas frequently defecate as they feed, so check for dark droppings resembling small bits of crushed pepper in pet fur, pet beddings and the carpet. Scratching the bitten area tends to spread around the flea dirt as well as any flea eggs.

Flea Eggs and Larvae

Another thing fleas leave behind is their eggs. Look for small, white flea eggs and larvae in your carpet, upholstery and pet beddings. Larvae resemble small beetle grubs or caterpillars; they feed on flea dirt and other eggs before pupating to become adults. If you’re having a hard time finding them, try using a magnifying glass to help spot them.

The White Sock Test

If you have dark carpets, the white sock test is for you. Wear white knee-high socks and slowly walk across the carpet where you suspect fleas might be. Afterwards, check the socks for fleas; they should be easy to see on white fabric.

What Can You Do Next?

If you find fleas, make sure you take action and consult your vet to find the safest flea prevention products and flea shampoo. 

Some store products halt infestations but might not get all the hidden larvae and eggs in your home. To get rid of fleas from your home, be sure to contact our professionals at Valley Pest Control. We’ll end the infestation to give you the peace you and your pets deserve.