It’s a good idea to check your pet regularly for the possibility of a flea infestation. Evidence of a flea infestation on your pet includes: seeing fleas on your pet, seeing “flea dirt” (black specks) in your pet’s hair coat, or seeing evidence of your pet being itchy. If your pet is itchy, it will be scratching or chewing its skin, or rubbing itself against objects in your house. Severe flea infestations can lead to anemia as well (this is especially life threatening in puppies and kittens). Signs of anemia that you would likely notice on your pet are pale gums and acting weak and lethargic. It’s also a good idea to look for evidence of flea dirt on your pet’s bedding.
Evidence of a flea infestation in your house includes: seeing flea dirt in your carpet, on your couch, in your bed, or anywhere else your pet relaxes. Occasionally, fleas will also bite humans. These bites will be raised, red, and extremely itchy.
To get rid of a flea infestation, all animals in the household must be treated with a flea preventative. Many shampoos, dips, etc. that can be found at pet stores will only kill the fleas on your pet but do not contain any preventative compounds to keep your pets from becoming re-infested. With a mild flea infestation it will take at least 8 weeks to clear the flea infestation from you pet and your home. With a moderate to severe flea infestation, or flea infestations that lead to FAD (flea allergy dermatitis) in your dog, or flea infestations that that are resulting in humans being bitten, it is extremely important that the household is thoroughly treated as well. Treatment will likely need to occur over a much longer period of time and it will require much more extensive measurers. This will likely require the use of a professional pest exterminator and continuous washing of clothing, bedding, and pillows. To prevent further flea infestation, all pets in the household should be regularly treated with a flea preventative even if they don’t go outside. Fleas can be brought into the house by a number of vehicles (such as your clothes and shoes).
After the flea infestation has been resolved, it is still important to continue regular flea prevention on your pets. Fleas can easily be brought into close proximity of your house by wildlife and untreated flea infested neighbors’ pets. Keeping your yard clean with regular mowing and raking can help reduce the chances of a flea re-infestation as well.