Fleas are amongst the biggest dreads of any pet owner and, unfortunately, these tiny pests may attack anytime! Every time your pet comes outside, it has a chance to walk into a flea infestation. If you are reading this, you probably want to avoid using chemicals for flea removal. That’s so good of you! Fortunately, there are 10 pet-friendly remedies and methods that guarantee the effect. PestControlHacks.com experts kindly provided a detailed overview of these items and techniques.
Table of Contents
1. Less Toxic Chemicals
Sometimes, there’s no way to solve the problem without chemical remedies. That’s where foggers and spray products can help a lot. But keep away from dangerous ingredients and protect your pets and children from contacting the chemicals. Here are some secure flea fogger reviews on Pest Control Hacks. NRDC recommends s-methoprene or pyriproxyfen as the least harmful pesticides. You should try to avoid synthetic neonicotinoids, including dinotefuran and imidacloprid, as they are toxic for children. Always use species-specific solutions and be careful with the dosage.
Attacking the pests that hide in the fur is the first thing you should do. As a rinse with water isn’t enough, you should apply a carefully selected anti-flea shampoo that doesn’t contain pyrethrins, d-limonene, carbaryl, and other harmful chemicals. Look for rosemary, eucalyptus, and citrus oils in the composition. Remember that cedar and tea tree oils are toxic for cats. Wash slowly from neck to head to trap fleas and wash them away easier.
3. Thorough Home Cleanup
Even if you manage to remove all the fleas from your pet’s fur, you also have to get rid of them around the house. Clean your pet’s bed, carpets and rugs, couches, and, well, everything! The most effective procedure is vacuuming with a powerful vacuum cleaner. The University of California proved that it helps to remove up to 96% of adult pests. In addition, vacuuming interrupts the healthy breeding process. When the job is done, take the dust bag carefully, seal it with a plastic bag, and dispose of it by throwing it into the rubbish bin.
4. Flea Comb
A flea comb is an excellent flea prevention tool that removes fleas even from long thick fur. Go to the bathroom, put a soapy water basin to dunk the comb in it before each run to prevent the fallen fleas from jumping back.
The most common flea trap is an incandescent lightbulb with sticky paper beneath. You can also use a small petri dish with a dish detergent and water solution instead or together with a lightbulb. Regardless of your choice, you should set the trap before going to bed and repeat the procedure every day until you see that there are no fleas on the tape or in the dish in the morning.
After cleaning the house, take care of your garden. Make sure to undertake flea control measures around your yard as it can be much more infested. The easiest and the safest method is to apply nematodes or Steinernema genus roundworms. These creatures feed on tiny insects, including fleas, and it’s very easy to use them. Just spread them around the lawn and spray the soil with some water every few days.
7. Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is a cheap organic powder that you can sprinkle over your carpets and yard soil. It’s not dangerous to anyone, but you should avoid sprinkling it in windy areas and near fans. It’s dust, so it can irritate the lungs if it flies all over the place. Sprinkle DE after vacuuming all the adult insects and vacuum it 1-2 days afterward.
8. Herbal or Lemon Spray
You can make a rather effective herbal spray by mixing 0,5 gallons of water, 1 gallon of vinegar, around 16 oz of lemon juice, and 8 oz of witch hazel in a big bottle. Apply the spray all over the house after cleaning and vacuuming. Pay the most attention to carpets, pet beddings, furniture, window sills, and cracks in the floor and walls.
Another option is a citrus spray. To make it, slice a whole lemon and add it into a pink of water. Then bring it to a boil and let the “flea brew” sit overnight. The following day, you should spray the solution over the same places as the herbal spray. But don’t soak the furniture with it!
9. Rosemary Powder
This is considered one of the most effective herbal remedies against light flea infestations in the house. You need to take rosemary, rue, peppermint, fennel, and wormwood, place them into a coffee grinder, and grind them into powder. Sprinkle the dust all around flea activity areas or all around the house.
10. Plant Repellent
Last but not least, the natural method in this guide is to grow flea-repelling plants in your house and garden. The most effective plants include spearmint, lavender, pennyroyal, chrysanthemum, and wormwood.
Forget About Collars!
Although flea collars are still legal under EPA regulations, they are found to be dangerous. The NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) is suing the EPA to ban this hazardous product. Collars can contain tetrachlorvinphos, carbaryl, and propoxur that are very toxic to children, adults, and pets.
Infestation Signs & Potential Risks
Let’s wrap up all the signs of a flea infestation and its hazards in two brief lists. Here are the signs first:
- Pets scratch and bite themselves excessively;
- Animals lose fur because of biting;
- White gums – kittens and puppies may have this symptom after many flea bites;
- Red spots – occur if your pet is sensitive to bites;
- Your legs itch due to bites;
- Fleas and their eggs around your house and on the animals;
- Pepper-like flea dirt on your pet’s skin.
Potential risks include:
- Tapeworms – if your pet ingests infected fleas;
- Bartonellosis – a common cat problem, but fleas can transfer it to dogs;
- Anemia – rare for adults, but common for cubs infested with too many fleas;
- Flea dermatitis – may cause swollen spots, terrible itching, fur loss, and wounds.
Now use your knowledge and let your pet have a sigh of relief as quickly as possible. Ditch chemicals unless your vet doesn’t see a way to escape using them. Your cats and dogs may not like how the procedure goes, but their skin and respiratory system will be thankful forever. Love your pets and enjoy exploring this wonderful world together!