Fleas are a type of insects with a narrow body and long powerful legs that feed on humans and their pets. They can nest in your carpet, in your yard, and even on your pets. There are many types of fleas, but we will focus on human, dog, and cat fleas since they are usually found in the home. Many people ask the question, “What do flea bites look like?,” and by the end of this article, we plan on answering that question.
Fleas are one of the most annoying pests to have in your house. If you have guests over often, you may hear them complaining about the little bites they get on their arms or legs. Getting rid of fleas in your house is no simple job, but it can be managed with a few natural and interesting home remedies. Techniques range from salt to mowing your lawn and can quickly and effectively remove fleas.
The life cycle of a flea consists of eggs, larvae, pupae, and the adult. Fleas lay eggs on your dog or cat and they drop off into your carpet where they can continue to grow. After time they hatch and become larvae which looks like worms. Not very many people notice these larvae, but the problem could easily be solved by vacuuming them up. After they make it past the larvae stage, they spin a cocoon and begin to change into an adult.
Dishwashing Soap and Candles
This is a very simple trick that not very many people know about, but can get rid of 90% of the fleas in your house. Obtain a bowl, a small candle, and some dish washing soap. You may want to do this technique right before you go to bed, as it takes about 8 hours and requires darkness.
First, fill your bowl about half way with warm water. Then, pour some dishwashing soap into the water and mix it up until there are bubbles up to the rim. Place the small candle on top of the water so that it floats. Remove any flammable items out of the way of the candle and light it. See, the light of the flame will cause fleas to jump towards it since they like light. When they are bouncing around trying to get near the heat, they will fall into the soapy water and drown. This method really does work well if used correctly to get rid of fleas.
Homemade Flea Spray
Consider manufacturing your own homemade spray to kill fleas. Just mix a bunch of these things together and spray it around your house. Most of these are herbal ingredients and will clean your house of fleas while also producing a great fragrance! Using these simple ingredients, this method is probably the easiest way to get rid of fleas in your house.
- Witch Hazel
- Aloe Vera
- Salt or Boric Acid
A main mixture would consist of a gallon of vinegar, about a cup of lemon juice, and half a cup of witch hazel. Mix in aloe vera and salt as you please if the concentration is not high enough to get rid of the fleas. Fill an empty sprayer bottle with this mixture and spray around your house, on your carpet, and especially on furniture. Try a small sample on your furniture first to make the spray won’t leave stains or dark marks. You want to get rid of fleas, not get rid of stains!
Salt and Boric Acid
You can practically get rid of fleas in a weekend with this method. It is probably the easiest method to kill them also. All you have to do is sprinkle salt, or boric acid if you choose, around your house in your carpet. Leave it for 48 hours. The fleas will feed on the salt and die from dehydration. Eventually, get out the vacuum and sweep up the dead flea bodies along with the salt and boric acid.
Rosemary is a herb that has been used for years to cure many medicine ailments. You can boil water and throw in some rosemary with tea for a nice drink. Rosemary looks a bit like a Christmas tree, and will smell nice like it too! Washing your pet with some rosemary will leave them with a great smell as well as remove any fleas that may be lurking on them.
First, bring a couple cups of water to boil and add a cup of rosemary leaves. After about half an hour, turn the heat off and throw away the wet leaves to leave a profound lovely-smelling liquid. Store this liquid in a cooled area such as a refrigerator so that it will not burn your pup. Once it is at a suitable temperature, give your dog or cat a bath using regular pet shampoo. Shower them thoroughly making sure not to hurt their eyes or damage their fur. Dry them off and pour the cold rosemary water onto your pet letting it dry naturally through evaporation and from the pet shaking. The fleas will stay away from your dog since they hate the smell of rosemary. Practice caution when using rosemary with cats and kittens as some species may be allergic if ingested.
Citronella candles can be extremely helpful in getting rid of fleas. As most people only think they are used to reduce mosquitoes, it also prevents fleas. Actually, what you need is a citronella spray. Some come with cedar, lavender and other fragrance enhancing chemicals that improve the smell and annoy the fleas. There are instructions on the can and you just spray it all around your house.
Wash Clothes and Bedding
This one is a given. Just wash your clothes and bedding regularly to prevent larvae fleas. They grow and spread in these cloths, and you can kill them and prevent them from reproducing by sending them through the washer and dryer once a week. Always read the instructions on the tags labeled carefully on direct procedures to wash these fabrics.
Here’s another very simple tip that can reduce the flea population in your house. Not very many people vacuum as much as they should, I suggest at least once a day. You should be vacuuming up to three times a day if you have a flea infestation. Getting these flea eggs your of your carpet is essential in cleaning up your house. If you really want to find flea relief, you will follow these steps. Also, make sure that your vacuum is set on the lowest setting so that you clean deep into the bottom of your carpet. Investing in a new vacuum cleaner may be necessary to successfully remove fleas in your house without using any harmful products. Getting rid of fleas in your carpet starts with proper vacuuming and extra care to detail.
Mow your Lawn
I bet everyone keeps their lawn cut short in the summer. Probably not as short as it should be. Fleas live outside too, and can be tossed around by other animals until they land in your yard. If you own a dog or a cat, then beware! The fleas will hop on them for a quick bite and leave your pet when they enter the house. Why would they want dog or cat blood when they can feed on tasty human blood? Keep your grass cut short to eliminate fleas and flea-carrying animals.
Keep your humidity low. Buy a cheap dehumidifier or two and run them at night to keep the moisture in the air down. Fleas hate dry areas and will move to humid spots to feed. Remove the humidity and you remove the pests, but beware that changes in your environment may affect your health and many other things.
Flea Bath for Pets
Remember how we discussed earlier how your pets can bring in outside fleas? Well, you can do a few things to prevent that from happening. Bathe your pets in warm water and Dawn dish soap. You can also use a medical prescription from your veterinarian to remove fleas from your dog. Cats are more sensitive and may require a flea collar. This will reduce the amount of fleas coming in contact with your pets and into your home. Your dogs and cats will be happier since they won’t have fleas biting them too. If you are looking for some cheap ways to get rid of fleas in the house, look no further, since these little baths are pretty inexpensive and can remove these parasitic pests on cats and dogs.
I hope after reading this article, you have a throughout understanding of these insects and how to kill them with ease. If you have any better methods that are not listed, feel free to leave a comment below suggesting your tips. Remember that any job can be completed with persistence and determination.