Have you noticed your dog or cat itching themselves more than usual? If you have, it’s important to check your pet and home for fleas!
Fleas are parasites that feed off warm-blooded organisms, including dogs, cats, raccoons, skunks and humans. Popular species of fleas include the cat flea, which mostly feed off cats, dogs, rabbits and humans.
Fleas are a disease-carrying vector. They are most infamously known for transmitting the bubonic plague but fleas have also been found to transfer tapeworms and cause anemia in pets. By understanding what flea bites look like in pets and humans, you can identify and stop a flea infestation in its tracks.
If you think you have a flea infestation in your home, it’s best to be prepared with basic knowledge and facts on flea habits:
Once you spot one flea in your home or on your pet, you’re bound to find more. A female flea can lay around 2,000 eggs in her lifetime.
A flea can live for about 100 days without feeding, so it’s important to be thorough when removing them from your home.
There are around 2,000 species and subspecies of fleas, but roughly 90% of the dogs and cats who experience flea bites receive them from the cat flea.
Flea Bites on Humans
Flea bites on humans are not nearly as common as flea bites on dogs or cats, but it is still important to be able to identify them.
Flea bites on humans typically appear in large groups or clusters. Some people are more allergic to flea bites than others. For those who are sensitive to flea bites, they may notice red, hive-like bumps around the bitten area.
Fleas on Dogs and Cats
Flea bites on dogs and cats look similar to flea bites on humans. Look for small, red dots underneath the fur. It’s a known fact that fleas often leave their droppings on animals. Flea droppings look like small, black dots and can often be found near a dog’s tail or on a cat’s back. Dogs and cats may scratch, lick or bite the infected areas, so if you noticed your pet doing this often, it’s best to check them for fleas.
If your dog or cat has an allergic reaction to fleas, bald spots may appear on their coat.
When checking for fleas on your pet, it is important to protect yourself as well. Wear gloves and long-sleeve to prevent fleas from coming in contact with you. Fleas cannot fly but they can jump great distances.
If you suspect your pet is experiencing a severe allergic reaction to flea bites, we recommend scheduling an appointment with your veterinarian.
Professional Flea Control
You can find DIY flea treatments online, but the best ways to stop and prevent flea infestations is with the help from a professional pest control service. Contact your local Western Exterminator flea specialist by filling out our online form or calling 888-444-6138.