Posted October 3, 2017 by Sarah Malone
Did you know that there are approximately 88 different species of fleas found in Australia?
Not all these species cause problems within our homes. The most commonly found flea in Australia is the Cat and Dog Flea which is found usually causing discomfort and bites to your family and pets.
Unfortunately, simply treating your pets for fleas isn’t always enough to get rid of these annoying and irritating little blood suckers, especially when climatic and environmental conditions are so favourable. It is very important to find the source of the problem to stop future infestation and to help prevent the risk of diseases in which fleas can carry.
Step 1. Where are They Coming from?
It is important to first try to locate the source in which they are breeding within. Fleas are generally found in damp, warm, shaded areas. It is rare to find them out in the open. The first place to look would be where your kids and pets like to play and sleep.
Some common areas to search would be in your garden areas, around the dog kennel, along fence lines or any outdoor furniture you may have. Keep in mind you may find them in a number of areas around your yard, and it’s very important to treat all areas as they can move if they find one area is no longer safe to live only to return again once the chemicals have worn away.
Sometimes fleas can come from an outside source. If the fleas are coming from a neighbouring property or a source is not found it is highly possible for the fleas to return once the barrier has worn off. It is very important to find their breeding ground.
PEST TIP: Try wearing white socks when searching around your yard, fleas are black and are easier to be seen when they jump onto your socks.
Step 2. How to Prepare for a treatment.
It is important to first treat the fleas you have before treating the home and yard. There are a number of pet flea treatments available for purchase, we have found that the tablet form has the best results as the capsules and pastes can be easily washed off and don’t always soak in. The tablets can be purchased at most local vets. After you have treated your pets, do not put them back into the infested area as they may be attacked once more forcing you to start all over again.
Preparing your yard:
- Clear the yard of unwanted vegetation and stored items to help reduce breeding grounds and to help make the areas less favourable.
- Mow the lawn short and dispose of the clippings into the bin, never put clippings back onto the garden as fleas are often found hiding inside grass cuttings or leaves left on gardens.
- Move all toys and small objects found around the yard.
Inside your Home:
- Vacuuming, sweeping and mopping your flooring and upholstery will help clean up any eggs, larvae, and pupae. Make sure you dispose of the bag after vacuuming.
- Wash all bedding and blankets in hot water (50 degrees and above) in which fleas may be hiding.
Step 3. Flood your yard!
Fleas find it hard to survive in flooded lawns and gardens, hence it is very important to give your yard a good soak before the treatment is carried out the following day. By doing this you are helping treat your yard in a few different ways.
- The water will help wash away the adult faeces in which their young feed off.
- It will force the fleas to seek higher ground thus making the treatment more effective as they will have nowhere to hide.
Step 4: Treat with Insecticides.
To do a thorough flea treatment all areas need to be treated. If you miss one area, the fleas can repopulate the already treated areas. By having a Trained Pest Controller carry out this treatment you are less likely to have reinfestation occurring. Pest Controllers are experts in knowing the more common hiding spots around your yard and home.
Step 5: Prevention is Better than Cure!
Once all fleas have been eliminated it is important to ensure you don’t create a favourable environment for them to return to.
- Never store lawn clippings and leaves on gardens.
- Vacuum and sweep regularly.
- Wash pet bedding regularly in hot water.
- Flea check your animals frequently.
If you are having trouble treating fleas or would like some more information or advice contact our office on 02 6884 7557
Check out our Flea Information Page.