Common Flea Control FAQs, Answered By The Flea Experts.


faq Flea Control

What Are Fleas?

Answer to Flea Control FAQs: Fleas are parasitic six-legged insects that feed on the blood of their hosts. Their bodies are made for jumping, and their compressed shape makes it easy for them to run through your pet’s hair. Although many different flea species exist, the most common one is Ctenocephalides felis, a cat flea that prefers dogs.

Fleas thrive in warm, humid conditions at low altitudes. A female flea requires a “blood meal” to lay her eggs. Their droppings, the reddish-brown “flea dirt” you see on your pet, are what larvae need to feed on to live.

Flea Control FAQs | What Is The Life Cycle Of A Flea?

A flea has four stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Fleas take about a month to grow from egg to adult. The female adult flea lays eggs about two days after she mates, and the eggs take another 2-6 days to hatch into larvae. Flea eggs are not sticky and tend to fall onto places where your pet rests or sleeps. These hatch into larvae that feed off “flea dirt.” This is the mother of fleas faeces.

In about a week, they start spinning a cocoon. The cocooned larva, now called a pupa, is resistant to dangers that could kill the flea in other stages of its life cycle. Under normal circumstances, the cocooned pupa remains in this state for about 15 days; this can extend to one year if the environment is hostile (i.e., too cold).

How Do I Determine If My Pet Has Fleas?

You must thoroughly examine your pet’s skin and hair coat under sufficient light. Fleas are reddish-brown and very fast, so you have to look closely. There may only be telltale flea dirt (flea faeces), often occurring above the dog’s rump or between a cat’s shoulder blades. Take a moist, white paper towel and rub it on the area. When wet, flea dirt turns reddish.

Flea Control FAQs |Are Fleas Dangerous To Pets Or Humans?

Fleas are not only a nuisance to humans and their pets but can cause medical problems in pets, including flea allergy dermatitis, tapeworms, hair loss, and secondary skin irritations. Also, no enormous large giant can cause anaemia, especially in puppies and kittens. Some pets have been known to die if the anaemia is severe. While bites are rarely felt, the resulting irritation is caused by flea salivary secretions that vary among pets.

Some may witness a severe reaction like rash or inflammation resulting in secondary infections caused by scratching the aggravated skin area. Tapeworms commonly plague our pets but may appear in children if parts of infested fleas are accidentally consumed. In some cases, fleas have spread bubonic plague from rodents to rodents and humans.

What Is Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FAD)?

FAD is one of the most common allergies in pets. FAD patients are irritated by flea bites and allergic to the parasite’s saliva, containing 15 reactive components. When the pet receives his first flea bite, his immune system responds, creating a hypersensitivity reaction.

The reaction manifests as severe itching when the pet has a repeated bite taste. A biting taste from a single flea can prevent a delayed itch reaction from flea bites received over the past six months. This starts a seemingly never-ending itch cycle and causes hive-like lesions from all edges, making the pet uncomfortable.

Flea Control FAQs |What Is The Best Treatment For Pets With FAD?

Since your goal is to prevent bites from occurring first, you should use a product that kills adult fleas before they bite and eliminates as many stages of the flea’s life cycle as possible. This involves using an adulticide, like pyrethrin and an Insect Growth Regulator (IGR) or Insect Development Inhibitor (IDI).

We recommend topical adulticides such as Bio Spot, Advantage, or Frontline. These treatments kill fleas in contact with the pet’s skin or hair and destroy eggs and larvae.

If your pet is on a flea control program and still suffers occasional flare-ups, itching can be controlled with antihistamines, Soothing Mist and Itch Stop products. In severe cases, your veterinarian may prescribe oral steroids or even hypersensitization.

How Do I Treat My Pet For Fleas?

For a dog, begin by bathing him using a flea-eliminating shampoo like Flea and Tick Shampoo or use a flea dip for heavy infestations. Apply a once-a-month topical or give your pet an oral once-a-month flea preventative. We recommend topical because they generally eliminate the fleas before they have a chance to bite your pet. If you bathe your pet frequently when topical, use a gentle shampoo that will not remove the protection.

Cats need to be treated carefully. Read all labels and only use those products that are meant for cats. Bio Spot for Cats contains the Flea Halt Towelettes that have pest control.

Steam n Dry Flea Control Auckland Service also fights against other pests and is the best at it. Our thoroughly licensed pest applicator technicians always operate to permitted provisions. Indeed, we work in compliance with the  New Zealand Certificate Pest Operations Program. Feel free to call us at 0800 199 399.


Updated Last: August/27/2023 By Graeme Stephens. (2001 IICRC Master Technician)