8 Tips to Make Your Pets and Home Flea-free
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Is your dog or cat scratching excessively over the past few days? Are they shedding too much fur? If your pet is currently dealing with these symptoms, it may be facing a flea infestation.
These pests may be small, but they can bring big problems to you and your pets. Once these critters latch on to your dog or cat, they cause itchiness and skin problems. Severe infestations can even cause blood loss and anaemia. Moreover, fleas also bite humans and cause allergic reactions.
Keep these bugs away by following these 8 simple steps!
1. Do a flea test
Sometimes, excessive scratching is a symptom for another disease. The weather or your pet’s diet can also affect their skin condition. Before you stock up on anti-flea shampoo, check your pooch for fleas first. Simply comb your pet’s fur and if you capture any live insects, you got an infestation in your hands. Your comb might also catch small, translucent dots – these are flea eggs. There are also instances wherein you’ll find black specks of dirt that look like dried blood. These are the parasite’s excrements.
2. Boost your pet’s immune system
Aside from keeping your cat’s or dog’s fur clean, you should also strengthen their immune system. Keep in mind that a healthy pet is an unappealing host for parasites.
With some vitamins and a balanced diet, your furry friend’s skin will become supple and will be coated with the right amount of natural oil. This protective layer blocks a flea’s breathing hole and also prevents bacteria from infecting the skin.
In order to boost your pets’ immune system, they need nutritional sulphur, amino acids, and essential fatty acids.
3. Avoid flea poisons
Chemical pesticide can effectively stop flea infestations. However, it also has negative side effects on your pet. When you apply topical pesticide on their fur, the poisonous compounds can seep in the deeper layers of the skin and can even be ingested when they lick themselves. When buying anti-flea products, be wary of the following chemicals:
4. Flea-proof your home
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If your pet is infested with fleas, chances are some of them are also hidden in the nooks and crannies of your home. Flea eggs that fall off your pet can thrive in carpets and furniture. Once they hatch, they’ll hop back to their host. To flea-proof your indoor spaces, regularly vacuum carpets, rugs, and upholstered furniture sets.
In order to remove these insects from your yard, you can flood your lawn with water. This method eliminates both flea larvae and eggs. These parasites thrive in areas that are shaded from sunlight. Reduce their hiding and breeding areas by regularly trimming the lawn.
During spring and summer, when the soil temperature usually rises above 40 degrees, you can spread nematodes in your garden to prevent flea infestation. These microscopic worms are parasites that effectively kill larvae and even adult fleas.
5. Anti-flea plants
If you don’t want to use pesticides on your garden, surround the yard with anti-flea plants. These include rosemary, lemon balm, sage, or mint. The plants secrete natural oils that deter pests. Not only do they prevent infestations, you can also use them for your homemade dishes!
Fogging is a method that professional exterminators use for severe infestations. This is effective for killing fleas thriving in hard-to-reach areas inside the house. You can do this on your own, but it takes a lot of preparation. Check this link to learn more about DIY fogging.
7. Use apple cider vinegar
Fill an empty spray bottle with apple cider vinegar and spritz it on your cat. The substance doesn’t really kill the bugs, but its smell and taste will prevent them from latching on to your pet. Apple cider is suitable for cats because it doesn’t reduce their pH levels.
8. Create a flea trap
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These bugs are attracted to bright lights. To take advantage of their behaviour, fill a small bowl or dish with soapy, warm water. Place it directly under a night light and leave it there. The fleas will hop towards the bowl, thus, drowning them. You can also surround the bowl with Christmas lights if you don’t have a night light. This method is only effective against adult fleas.
Fleas are irritating parasites, but they are not impossible to deal with. As much as possible, choose natural pest removal methods to ensure that your family and pets are not harmed. When you buy anti-flea products, only choose brands that use pet-friendly ingredients.