FLEAS

There are over 2,500 species of fleas on the planet, and they can be found almost anywhere. But when they invade a human habitation, they almost always come from cats. Despite their common name, cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis) can feed on dogs as well as cats. Dog fleas (a different species) are seldom found on dogs that live indoors.

These tiny biting bugs are best identified by their small wings and large hind legs. Fleas belong to the order Siphonaptera and survive by drinking the blood of their host. They are attracted to any warm-blooded animal but seem to prefer living on humans, cats, dogs, and rodents.

 

Fleas are the bane of any pet owner. They spread the Bubonic Plague and murine typhus to people, are an allergen for pets and humans, cause tapeworms, and are responsible for painful, itchy red bumps.

 

One common misconception about fleas is that they lay their eggs in your carpeting and furniture, but they lay the eggs on the animal they are feeding on. The eggs are tiny and not sticky, so a lot of them end up getting on your floor. A single adult flea can produce 2,000 eggs in its lifetime.

 

Fleas are blood-sucking parasites that produce waste at the end of the digestion process. They are very persistent, taking as many as 15 blood meals in a single day. Flea faeces are dried blood residue. When they hatch, flea larvae feed on this dried blood waste.

  • Expert Advice

    EXPERT ADVICE

    One of the best ways to get a flea infestation in your home under control is to use a powerful vacuum that pulls in all floors, upholstery, and mattresses. These areas are usually good hiding places for flea eggs, larvae, and cocoons. Dispose of vacuum bags.

  • Fun Facts

    FLEAS ARE ATHLETES

    Fleas don't fly. They jump, and they can jump 150 times their size! If we had similar skills we would be able to propel ourselves over skyscrapers.

SHARE