If you’re got a dog, chances are you’ve battled with fleas. No one wants these pests in their homes or on their beloved pets. However, getting rid of them can be problematic. How do you get rid of fleas? You’ve got to learn how to break their cycle.
Life Cycle of a Flea
The general life cycle of a flea is three weeks. In this timeframe, they can go from egg to larvae to pupae to adult. When trying to get rid of fleas for good, you have to treat the whole life cycle at the same time — not just the adult fleas you see on the dog.
Here’s what you’ll need to do.
Treat the Home
The first thing to address is the source of the problem — where the fleas live. Fleas breed inside and outside of your home. They love to nest in carpet, fabric, bedding, cracks and crevices inside the home. Your best line of defense is to vacuum — often and with a vengeance. Thoroughly vacuum the entire home at least once a week — using attachments to get to the crack and crevices where these pests love to hide.
If fleas are visually present, you’ll also need to use a fog product to rid them from spaces you cannot see. A trip to your local do-it-yourself pest control store is in order to purchase products strong enough to handle the problem. Be careful to follow all precautions and instructions on the packaging, as the compounds in fog products can be extremely strong.
Outside — mow and spray — that will complete your environmental control efforts. Fleas love tall grass and mowing helps keep them in check. You can have a professional pest control spray or purchase a product from a pest control specialist to do the job correctly.
Treat the Dog
After treating the inside and outside of your home, it’s time to take care of your pup. Bathing or dipping the dog will rid them of fleas. However, there are so many products available; it can be hard to determine which is best for your animal. A visit to your veterinarian is probably your best bet.
Here’s a tip for shampooing. Make sure you don’t rush the process. Part of killing the fleas is making sure you coat them in sudsy water for at least five solid minutes to suffocate the little buggers; then rinse well.
Medications made specifically for preventing flea infestation are also available from your veterinarian and are generally dispensed according to the weight of your pet. You can also use sodium borate in the carpet to disrupt the life cycle of fleas. These compounds are natural and safe for both kids and pets.
Getting rid of fleas can be an exhausting job, but it can be done. Treating the whole problem, from breeding to adult infestation, will give you the best results and make your dog a happy member of the household.