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flea under microscope

What are fleas?

The cat flea, Ctenocephalides felis, is the most common flea in Rhode Island and throughout the US. They live on a host, feeding on blood and laying hundreds of eggs. In fact, a female flea can lay up to 500 eggs in her lifetime. As the name suggests, their favorite hosts are domestic cats, but they will infest any mammal, including raccoons, rats and dogs.

What do they look like?

Adult fleas are wingless and only about 1/8 of an inch in length. A flea’s body is very flat, making it easy for them to fit through the smallest of spaces. They are generally black in color, but can also be a reddish-brown color.

Do fleas bite?

Yes, fleas feed on their host’s blood. While they cannot infest a human like they do a cat or dog, fleas will bite a human.

Are fleas dangerous?

A flea bite often leaves an itchy, red bump that can be very irritating. They can spread tapeworm to dogs and cats and have been known to transmit plague and murine typhus.

What are the signs of a flea infestation?

If you have pets in the home, they will be your first indication of a flea infestation. Watch your dog or cat for constant scratching, as this is the first sign of fleas. Inspect your pet, looking for small, moving bugs. You may also find small, black droppings on your pet’s skin.

Why do I have a flea problem?

Most of the time fleas enter a structure on your cat or dog. However, you can still have fleas in your home even if you do not have pets. A flea can jump 6 inches at a time, making it very easy for them to gain entrance to your home searching for food and warmth.

How do I get rid of fleas?

Fleas are very difficult to get rid of. Simply treating your pet will not eliminate the problem, as they can live in your carpet and furniture. Vacuuming may help, but eggs, larvae and pupae are often tightly attached to the carpet fibers and will not come loose with regular vacuuming. If you are having problems controlling fleas in your home in Worcester, Newport, or elsewhere in Rhode Island or Massachusetts, contact Big Blue Bug Solutions today!

Flea prevention tips from Big Blue Bug Solutions

Fleas are nearly impossible to prevent, as they can be brought into home even if you do not have pets. They are often introduced to a structure by wild animals that come nearby. If you have seen signs of fleas in your home, contact Big Blue Bug Solutions immediately. We have been providing effective, responsible solutions to flea problems in the Providence area for over 75 years.

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