What Do Fleas Look Like?
Cat fleas are very small parasitic pests that are dark reddish-brown in color. They have flat, hard bodies that are very hard to squish. Cat fleas do not have wings and so are unable to fly. They do have an amazing eight-inch vertical jump thanks to long and powerful legs.
How Do Fleas Spread?
As parasitic pests, fleas require a blood meal to survive. Hosts include cats and dogs but also wild animals including mice and squirrels. They are often introduced onto properties by their hosts and eventually make their way inside either by their own devices, family pets, and even on people.
When Are Fleas Most Active?
In Texas, fleas are most active in the spring, summer, and early fall months but because of the mild climate, are active all year long. Temperatures around 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit with a 70% to 80% humidity level are the perfect condition for fleas to develop.
Are Fleas Dangerous?
Fleas are not typically dangerous to humans; however, flea bites can cause excessive itching and their saliva may cause an allergic reaction in some individuals. Fleas on pets are more concerning as they can transmit parasites like tapeworm, lead to hair loss and skin irritations. Flea infestations may also cause anemia, especially in young animals.
What Do Flea Bites Look Like?
A typical flea bite is a small, red bump that has a single puncture mark in the center. The bite may have a red halo border. Flea bites are usually discovered on limbs, knees, and even in armpits and may show up in clusters.
Should I Be Concerned About Fleas Even Though I Don’t Have Pets?
Surprisingly the answer is yes! While it is true that pet owners have a greater chance of having a flea infestation, homeowners without pets also need to be on the lookout as these parasitic pests come in on rodents (i.e. mice, rats, and squirrels), on clothing and shoes, and with their impressive jump, on their own after being dropped off by wildlife passing by. If you’ve just moved into a new home or apartment, it’s possible the previous occupants did not resolve a flea infestation before they moved.
Does Modern Offer Flea Control?
How Can I Prevent Flea Infestations?
If you’re a pet owner, we highly recommend you work with your veterinarian to find the best flea treatment. You should also wash pet bedding often and vacuum frequently, paying close attention to spots where pets like to spend time. We also encourage you to make your property less appealing to wildlife by removing feeders and harvesting gardens regularly. You should also seal any holes that would allow rodents to squeeze threw. Finally, inspect your pets, your family, and yourself for fleas after spending time outside.