Fleas are tiny insects that are 2 mm and 3 mm long, and are brown to blackish. Their body, is narrow on the sides and more or less oval in shape, and has spiny hairs covering it, as well as short and prickly spines. Fleas have long powerful legs, especially their hind legs, allowing them to jump easily.
The female flea lays a few dozen to several hundred eggs in the fur of the animal host. The eggs fall to the ground after some time. Depending on the species, it takes several weeks to several months to evolve from the egg to the adult stage. The life expectancy of the adult flea varies by species. For the cat flea, which is very common, it is 7 to 14 days.
Habitat and Food
Fleas are insects that can infest a home. They live on the bodies of mammals such as cats and dogs and feed by pricking the flesh and sucking their blood.
The bite usually causes redness and itchiness. Some species of fleas can transmit diseases to humans and domestic animals.
Signs of Infestation
A pet that is constantly scratching may be an indication of fleas on its body. Flea bites show up as rows of small red dots on the skin. These parasites are very visible on white surfaces; therefore it is possible to identify fleas by wearing long white socks because they will jump at the ankles.
Preparation Steps for a Treatment
- Before treating your home, consult your veterinarian for your pet. Treat it against fleas if necessary.
- Remove all litter boxes, empty them and clean them. Clean or dispose of all pet bedding.
- Vacuum all carpets, rugs and upholstered furniture, especially where the animal sleeps or goes often. Discard the vacuum bag in an airtight bag immediately.
- Clean all the floors (ceramic and vinyl) with a damp mop.
- Plan to leave your home for the duration of the treatment and return only after 4 hours. Wherever possible, open windows for 20 minutes upon your return. It is also important to not walk barefoot on treated areas for 48 hours after treatment.