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How To Remove Fleas: Get Rid Of The Fleas From Your Pet And Home Finally
How Exactly Can You Remove Fleas In Your Home?
Having pets in your home you undoubtedly at one point in time have encountered fleas. Once fleas invade your home it is quite a task to remove them. You probably are searching for answers in how to remove fleas. Fleas are stubborn with a life cycle of several weeks to months. They flourish in environments that are warm and moist with their main source of food being blood preferably from the host of either a cat or dog.
To effectively rid fleas from your house you need to understand the complete life cycle of a flea. Fleas have four stages in their life cycle - egg, larva, pupa and adult.
Egg - The eggs of fleas are not sticky and fall off an animal onto the furniture, carpet, bedding and the floorboards of your home. The eggs take anywhere from two days to a few weeks to hatch.
Larva - The larva is semi-transparent white and are about 1/4" in length. They eat the feces of adult fleas along with other debris they find in your house. This stage of a flea's life lasts around 5 to 18 days.
Pupa - This is the stage right before a flea becomes a full adult. The flea will emerge from their cocoon between 3 to 5 days or as long as a year or even longer. They will appear when the time is right. This could be a number of things like from warm heat, from the carbon dioxide of an animal, and high humidity.
Adult - Adult fleas prefer to live on an animal. Their diet consists of blood from their host. The females will lay white, round eggs, up to 50 a day with 500-600 being laid over the course of several months.
There are two main types of fleas -- cat fleas or ctenocephalides felis and dog fleas or ctenocephalides canis with cat fleas being the most common found in households.
Can People Get Fleas?
This is a question you have most likely been wondering. Well, in short no, fleas are not capable of surviving on a human, though there are a couple exceptions such as the human flea or Polex Irritans. Don't worry as these are quite uncommon and seen more out in wildlife.
Fleas can still become a problem in your home even if you do not own any pets. You can carry them in from being outside or another person could bring them in if they were nearby an animal infected with fleas. Without any kind of hosts fleas will turn to the next available source of food - YOU. They will start biting and sucking your blood instead.
How To Remove Fleas
One of the most important steps in cleansing your home of these pests is a thorough deep cleaning. Start with removing all bedding, wash in hot water than vacuum all furniture including carpeting. If you have some type of steam cleaner, use your steam cleaner to sterilize all the floors in your home. It is said that extreme high temperatures will kill any fleas and their eggs. When using steam heat make sure the heat reaches a temperature of at least 130 degrees.
Be attentive and consistent in your cleaning. It is a must to vacuum and steam clean weekly to clean newly hatched eggs.
How To Remove Fleas With Homemade Flea Remedies
Using homemade flea remedies is the smartest route to go with it being safer for you, your family and pets. When removing fleas from your pet and your home you will want to be careful in what products you use. Here are a few alternatives to the traditional means of flea removal.
Using Essential Oils
You can use a mixture of essential oils to make different flea removal and repellent products like rosemary, bergamot, lavendar, eucalyptus, citronella, juniper, geranium, pine cedar, crabapple essence, cinnamon, wormwood, clove, peppermint and pennyroyal. Be careful with pennyroyal as this can be toxic to anyone if they are pregnant including any pets who maybe pregnant.
Take 2 drops of crabapple essence and put in your pet's food bowl.
Homemade Flea Spray
Take 10 to 15 drops of your favorite oil, one that is listed above with 1 to 2 ounces of a mild soap and water. Pour in a spray bottle and spray on your pet.
Homemade Flea Shampoo
Take 6 to 10 drops of any essential oil mixing with 2 ounces of a mild shampoo or soap. Let the shampoo sit in their fur for at least five to ten minutes than rinse out.
Homemade Herbal Flea Powder
Take some dry herbs such as rosemary, fennel, yellow dock, wormwood and eucalyptus crushing in equal parts and apply this mixture to your pets.
Homemade Flea Collar
Take a regular flea collar than add a few drops of either of the oils mentioned on the collar and place around your pet's neck.
A good idea is to use a mild dish detergent to bathe your pet in. The best kind I have found is Dawn dishwashing liquid. Be sure to avoid the eyes and mouth area.
Another good idea that involves the use of dish detergent is placing a bright lamp on the floor, than putting a container of water with couple drops of dish liquid detergent in it next to the lamp. The heat from the lamp will attract the fleas thus making them want to jump into the water.
A good homemade flea remedy for the home is using a combination of diatomaceous earth with borax and salt. Mix together 1 1/2 lbs of the diatomaceous earth along with 1 1/2 lbs of natural borax with a cup of salt. The diatomaceous earth will work because it is made of very small particles that consist of sharp spines. These spines will prick the fleas resulting in them being killed. The borax and salt work together by absorbing any moisture making your home a much less desirable place for the fleas. Remember that fleas need to live in warm and moist places.
Sprinkle this mixture all throughout your house on carpets and any hard to reach places. Let this sit for a couple of days than vacuum. if you prefer not having your floors drenched with this than you can choose to put the the mixture into your vacuum bag than proceed to clean your floors.
Now keep in mind this will not kill any unhatched flea eggs and will need to be repeated until all the fleas have gone through their life cycle and all eggs have been hatched.
One note on the diatomaceous earth do NOT use pool grade as this is dangerous and can cause silicosis. You should only purchase this in a lawn and garden store and check the labels too.
My Experience In Removing Fleas
Our house had become infested with fleas after one of my cats had ran outside. When one cat became infested than the other two was short behind. It was a nightmare to say the least. It seemed that every day I was finding fleas and becoming a human snack for them it felt with numerous bites all up and down my ankles. I became so agitated from the bites that I began wearing my husband's long socks to cover up my legs. I was nearly eight months pregnant as well which made matters worse.
With the impending birth of my son, it was imperative that I do something to get rid of these fleas once and for all.
So money after money I spent on numerous products to solve this flea problem from flea bombs to flea powders, sprays, dips and shampoos for the cats, but to no avail the fleas seemed to be resistant.
Having three cats proved to be a challenge in removing all the fleas from my home. After months of trying everything imaginable, frustration set in and I reluctantly decided to find new homes for my three cats. I just couldn't take a chance on my new baby being bit by a flea.
A couple weeks after the cats left my house, I did notice less fleas jumping around in the house. After some time passed there were less and less fleas. During this time though I was still vigilant on deep cleaning to remove any eggs that may have been laid.
If it wasn't for my baby I would have kept on with the flea treatment, but time was running out and my due date was approaching steadily. Having said that after this ordeal, I did learn a great deal on how to remove fleas. The key being persistence and consistency in the flea treatment you use.