So far in our mini-series about fleas, we’ve shown you how to spot if your dog has fleas, revealed where they come from and unveiled that most fleas found on dogs are actually cat fleas.
Now we’re here to tell you why these pesky parasites thrive during the warmer months, how to get rid of fleas and why it’s important to make sure you treat your home as well as your dog. It’s not as complicated as it sounds and we have one suggestion to help you save time without compromising on the results.
How temperature affects the flea life cycle
Climate is an important factor in flea infestations. During the colder months, fleas lay fewer eggs and their life cycle takes much longer to complete.
From spring to autumn, fleas thrive as warmth and humidity provide them with perfect breeding conditions and home infestations can occur regardless of how clean your home is.
The high number of eggs they produce (up to 50 per day!) can develop into adult fleas in just 14 days. So you see how infestations can quickly escalate and become out of control…
I have a home infestation, what does this mean?
Fleas lay eggs that fall off your dog, hatch and develop into larvae and pupae (cocoons) in the home.
Fleas hatch out of their cocoons to jump onto a host: your dog, another pet – or yourself! Pet parents being bitten, usually around the ankles, are a sure sign of a home infestation with immature stages of fleas.
Pictured above, flea bites on a human
Treating both the pet and the home is key
Regular use of treatment applied to your pet will prevent fleas, however, if you’re fighting an infestation you need to act fast by treating both your dog and your home. To help you crack on follow our top tips:
How to treat a flea infestation
Pay more attention to flea hot-spots
Flea eggs fall off your dog and tend to be present in bigger numbers where your furry friend spends a lot of time. Don’t let these spots go untouched when treating your home, wherever they are: dog bed, your bed, car, etc.
Flea larvae and pupae hide in dark places: deep in carpets, under furniture, in soft upholstered furniture, in cracks and crevices in flooring and alongside skirting boards.
So when you mop or vacuum make sure you get stuck into all those nooks and crannies to help eliminate anything lurking in the shadows! It’s a good idea to wash your pet’s bedding at 60°C.
Using a household spray, such as FRONTLINE HomeGard, will also help kill developing fleas in the environment.
If your dog does have fleas, don’t be disheartened – if you follow our top tips you can get your dog and home out of the flea cycle.