How long do fleas live on carpet: How to Get Rid of them?
If you have a pet in your homes such as a dog or cat, chances are you also have unwelcome visitors known as fleas. Though so small they are hard to detect with the naked eye, they pack quite a punch in terms of creating problems for you and your pets. While most people assume fleas live only on their pets, the fact is fleas also love to hunker down in carpeting. Based on research studies, more than 85% of fleas actually develop within carpet rather than on a pet's body, making it even more difficult to rid your home of these pests. However, while fleas can be a formidable opponent, the good news is that there are numerous ways you can ensure your carpet and pets will be flea-free. If you're wondering how long do fleas live in carpet, here's some information you'll want to keep in mind during the battle of you vs. flea.
What Do Fleas Look Like?
If you've ever seen adult fleas, you know just how small they really are. Averaging a size of only about two millimetres, fleas have no wings yet have legs that must have springs in them since they are quite capable of jumping long distances that can exceed 200 times the length of their bodies. Reddish-brown in colour, they are often said to resemble tiny black dots.
How Do Fleas Develop?
When a female flea starts laying eggs on a host such as your dog or cat, you can expect there to be 20-30 eggs laid per day. However, as the eggs begin to dry, they fall off your pet and accumulate within the carpet. Eventually, the flea eggs hatch and you then have flea larvae, which look like very tiny worms. As they begin to turn into adults, they will begin to construct a cocoon within your carpet, where they will stay until your dog or cat comes walking by, in which case the flea will jump onto the animal or even yourself and start feeding on blood. Should an adult flea be unable to find a suitable host, they will die within a few days.
What Do Fleas Live Off Of?
When flea eggs hatch and larvae are crawling around, they immediately need plenty of nourishment, which they get from consuming adult flea faeces that get trapped in the carpet. Afterwards, adult fleas rely solely on sucking blood from a host animal or human to sustain them. Should a few days pass without an adult flea being able to drink blood like a vampire, they perish.
How Do Fleas Infest Pets and Humans?
As for how fleas can become an infestation problem for pets and humans, they do so not only by hiding in carpeting, but other areas as well. Whether it's furniture, beds, crevices in floors or walls, or anywhere else your pet may go, fleas are small enough to hide anywhere and wait for you or your pet to walk by. Once fleas settle in on a host and begin getting their daily meals of blood, you'll start to notice various symptoms on you and your pet. The most common include itching, reddened skin, and possibly some swelling around the bite area resulting from the allergic reaction of the skin. While the actual flea bite is rarely felt, the flea saliva left from the bite is what actually produces the itching and irritability.
Where Do Fleas Live?
As previously stated, fleas are small enough to live almost anywhere. Although in some climates that are colder fleas may die off in winter, in most cases they are unfortunately year-round pests to humans and their pets. Since there is no telling where flea eggs may be shed within your home, you can expect to find fleas virtually anywhere. Whether you are sitting at your desk in a den, lying in bed watching television, or eating a meal in your kitchen, fleas can be present and looking for a meal of their own.
Can Fleas Live on Hard Floors?
Though they prefer carpeting, fleas are quite capable of living on hard floors. Since there are often various crevices on hard floors, they make perfect living quarters for fleas that are waiting to use those powerful hind legs to jump onto an unsuspecting host. If you're wondering if fleas can live on humans without pets, the answer to your question is yes. Since fleas can be found outside in your yard as well, a simple walk through the grass and then stepping inside onto hard floors will keep the cycle going indefinitely.
How Long Do Fleas Live On Carpet?
In most cases, fleas can live an average of three months in your carpet. However, if no measures are taken to get rid of them and they have you or your pet on which they can continually feed, they can live indefinitely within this environment.
How Long Can Fleas Live in an Empty House?
If fleas find themselves in an empty house, their days will be numbered. Since they will have no pets or humans around, they likely will only survive a few days. However, if a stray mouse or rat should happen to take up residence within the empty house, fleas will once again have a suitable host, thus extending their lives a while longer.
How Do I Get Rid of Fleas in My Home Fast?
Though fleas can be tough pests to get rid of, there are plenty of products on the market today that allow you to rid your home of fleas much faster than in years past. As more and more people look for natural flea treatments for their homes, their pets, and even themselves, one of the best comes from The Healthy Dog. The All Natural Household Flea Fighter Spray, available in a spray bottle, is 100% natural and safe to be used around kids and pets. Able to be sprayed on anything, it will last for months and make your battle against fleas much easier to win.
Along with the All Natural Flea Fighter from The Healthy Dog, there are many other types of natural treatments you can try. One of the simplest is filling a bowl with water, mixing in a bit of dish soap, and putting the bowl on the floor near a wall or crevices where fleas may be living. By doing so and positioning a light nearby, the fleas will jump toward the light and into the bowl, killing them. Along with this, you can use a mixture of fine salt and borax sprinkled onto your carpet before vacuuming. By letting it sink into the carpet overnight, you should be able to get rid of flea eggs, larvae, and adult fleas.
When it comes to chemical treatments for flea removal, you will have much from which to choose. In most cases, this involves purchasing topical flea treatments that are applied directly to your pet. One of the most common is Advantage, which comes in small tubes suitable for one dog or cat. However, since these are applied based on your pet's weight, be sure you use a tube with the appropriate amount. Otherwise, your pet may have an adverse reaction that could require veterinary assistance.
Along with the topical flea applications such as Advantage, many pet owners try to control fleas by using flea collars that are worn by their pets. Much like topical treatments, these collars emit various chemicals into your pet's skin regularly, keeping fleas at bay. Unlike topical applications that need to be applied monthly, some flea collars can last as long as one year.
Even if you are using natural treatments or chemical treatments in your efforts to be rid of fleas, there are also many other types of treatments you may want to consider as part of your arsenal. One of the most popular is having your home's carpeting, upholstery, and furniture steam cleaned by professionals. Through extreme temperatures associated with hot water extraction cleaning, adult fleas, eggs, and larvae will be killed.
You can take comfort in our trusted dog flea shampoo that is all natural to help kill fleas.
If your flea infestation has gotten out of control and you need to take drastic measures, you can call in professional pest control technicians to apply a residual insecticide to your floors. Done so using liquid or spray powder, the downside to this is that the insecticide will need to be left on the flooring for at least two weeks to be effective.
While fleas can transmit such things as tapeworms and even typhus or the bubonic plague, these happenings are for the most part rare occurrences in today's world. However, that doesn't mean you want to have fleas hanging around as house guests forever. Whether you prefer to use natural treatments, chemical treatments, or other options, persistence will be the key to success in this battle. If you're ready to accept the challenge of ridding your carpets and pets of fleas forever, visit www.mypet.com/fleas-and-ticks/flea-life-cycle.aspx to learn more about your enemy and how they can be defeated.
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