As soon as the weather gets warmer, fleas begin to hatch and can turn into a pesky problem for you and your pet. Here are some interesting flea facts and why in the summer, vacuuming every day might be your best defense.
10 Things You Didn’t Know About Fleas
1. Adult fleas only make up 5% of the flea population; the rest is pupae (15%), larvae (30%) and eggs (50%).
2. 5% still presents a significant health issue for your pet. These parasites can ingest 13.6mg of blood daily, which can cause anemia.
3. Another major health concern: immature fleas can transmit tapeworms Yuck!
4. And some pets can develop allergies to saliva (called flea allergy dermatitis) causing irritation and itchiness.
5. The best way to check for fleas is to run a flea comb around the base of your dog’s tail.
6. If you don’t see any, but still suspect fleas, look for “flea dirt” (undigested blood). It looks like pepper flakes and turns red when squished between your fingers.
7. Your dog may need a flea bath, but it doesn’t have to be toxic. Cedar oil is a non-toxic substance proven to eradicate fleas and is an ingredient in the all-natural flea bath we give at Fitdog.
8. Unfortunately, if you really want to stop your problem, a bath won’t do it. Three-fourths of a flea’s life cycle is spent somewhere other than on a host animal, so cleaning your entire house is must.
9. You can start by sprinkling baking soda on your carpets. It’s a natural substance that can be used to kill fleas (via dehydration) and is safe for pets.
10. However, according to entomologist Glen Needham, PhD, you might not even need the baking soda. He discovered that vacuuming kills 96% of all adult fleas and 100% of flea pupae and larva. The more moving parts in the vacuum, the more fleas it kills.
The best way to keep these pests off of your dog is by putting them on medication. That way, your pet is less likely to get sick if a flea lands on them. If you need some help on getting these suckers out of your space, check out our guide on how to Naturally & Effectively De-Flea Your Home!