The most common species of Flea is the Cat Flea, known for readily biting humans. The Bird Flea are next in importance, followed by the rare Dog Fleas, although other species may become temporarily attached to dogs. Finally Human Fleas whcih are extremely rare.
Adult fleas are small (averages 2mm in size) wingless insects, with flattened and red-brown, with backwardly directed spines and legs designed for jumping.
All adult Fleas are parasitic on warm-blooded animals. The females lay their eggs after feeding on the infested animal. Female Fleas can live up to two years, during which time they can lay up to 1000 eggs. The eggs drop onto the fl oor and the animal's bedding. After several days the eggs will develop into larvae. When fully grown the larvae spin well camoufl aged silken cocoons. When fully developed the adult waits within this until it detects the vibrations caused by a potential host. Only then does it emerge. Th e complete lifecycle takes about a month in the summer.
Mainly active in communal rooms where pets sleep and where there is most activity. Fleas are generally found to be living on pets, in carpets, pet bedding and upholstered furniture.
Adult Fleas feed on the blood of humans and animals. The larval stages live in the nest of the host and feed on skin, feathers and, most importantly, the blood-rich faeces of the adult flea.
In the UK there is little evidence that Fleas spread disease. However Flea bites can cause intense irritation around the central bright red spot. Different people react diff erently to a bite, both in terms of degree of reaction and time taken to react.
Bites on you or family members usually around ankles and legs. In humans, flea bites can produce an irritating and allergic reaction. The typical symptom of a flea bite is a small red spot about 5mm in diameter.
If you have an active infestation, you may see Fleas jumping in your carpet and furniture.
It's difficult to prevent your pets from getting Fleas. However there are some things you can do to reduce your chances of getting them:
For a Flea infestation, we strongly recommend you contact a us. We have the technical knowledge and access to a range of professional use insecticides which are not available to the public. Some of our customers spend a lot of money on smoke bombs, powders and sprays which don't work. If they would have called us first they probably would have saved money.
Prior to an insecticide treatment, clear as much floor space as possible. To ensure that treatment is as thorough as possible. Vacuuming all areas helps to remove any debris, eggs, larvae and adult fleas. The vibration of the vacuum cleaner also helps to stimulate adults to hatch from their cocoon stage. Remember to remove the waste collection compartment/bag, from the vacuum cleaner, and dispose of it in an outside bin as you may have collected eggs, larvae and adult fleas while vacuuming.
The standard treatment for infested premises is the application of a residual insecticide, either as a liquid spray or a powder. The insecticide is applied to all floor surfaces. Ensure you do not vacuum or wash for at least 2 weeks (or longer if possible), or you'll be in danger of eliminating the residual insecticide which will lead to a failed treatment.