Known for their uncomfortable and unsightly bites, having fleas in the home can be unsanitary, distressing and dangerous for your pet’s health.
Infestations can take weeks or months to control, and when fleas infiltrate the home, they seek out warmth by burying into bedding and carpets.
According to reports, the UK is set for an invasion of billions of “super fleas”, down to recent weather conditions. They coined their name due to their reported large penises – twice as long as their bodies.
Fleas thrive in warm and humid conditions, with a female flea able to lay up to 50 eggs a day, which can survive for several months.
MSD Animal Health created a comprehensive guide to helping keep you, your home and your pets flea free this summer.
The five-step guide was created by MSD vet Hannah Newbury, who is working on anti-flea project The Big Flea project.
Get busy with the vacuum
Vacuum carpets, furnishings, cracks in the floorboards and upholstered furniture. This will not only help to reduce the adult flea infestation, but also help to reduce their eggs and larvae.
Be careful emptying the vacuum. Empty your vacuum cleaner away from the house because the fleas will still be alive and you don’t want them coming back into the home.
Ensure all your pets are up-to-date with their flea treatments
It’s important all your pets have year-round protection from fleas. It’s no use just treating one pet and leaving the others.
Your vet can advise which products work best but at least 12 weeks of continuous treated is needed to break the flea life cycle effectively.
Groom your pets
Groom your pets regularly with a flea comb to ensure you’re keeping an eye out for any signs of fleas.
Black or white specks in the comb will be an indication that your pet has fleas.
Wash your pet’s bedding
Fleas can survive without a host for many months, burying into the bedding and carpets of your home, so it’s important to wash all bedding and furnishings that your pet uses on a regular basis.
According to Hannah, if you suspect that your pet has fleas and could bring them into the home, the best thing to do is to seek help from your local vet.
At least 12 weeks continuous treatment is required to break the flea life cycle, helping to rid the pet of fleas and ensure your home and family are parasite-free.
It is also recommended to wash bedding regularly at 60 degrees to kill the parasites.
Another pest set to plague the home of Britons this summer is the flying ant.
Flying ants are fertile male and female ants, whose sole purpose is to reproduce and start a new ant colony, they do this on ‘Flying Ant Day’.
‘Flying Ant Day’ happens once a year, and this year experts are warning it will come earlier than usual.
According to pest controllers Rentoki, flying ants are said to have increased by a staggering 50 billion this year.
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