May 21, 2019 08:30 am | Abby Khoriaty
Just in case you’re not familiar with fleas, they are small parasites that typically jump onto dogs and cats and feed on their blood. Because they are very tiny, about 2 millimeters long, fleas can be hard to spot on pets, especially pets with dark-colored coats. Adult fleas are a reddish, brown creature with six legs and a thin flat body covered with hair. Fleas don’t have wings, but they are able to jump great distances from host to host.
Flea life cycle and what they look like
Fleas go through a 4-stage lifecycle. Generally, when you see a flea, it’ll be an adult flea that usually lives for about 2-3 months. Once an adult female flea has her first feeding of blood, she’ll lay eggs. In just one month a female flea can lay over 2,000 eggs in a month. The eggs are less than a millimeter in size and look like a white, tiny grain of salt. Flea eggs can easily get into and attach to carpet and furniture fibers, which can be hard to completely vacuum up.
Larvae then hatch from the flea eggs. These tiny, worm-resembling larvae are white in color with pale hairs. As they prepare for the pupal stage, they feed on what is known as flea dirt, which is actually flea waste. After the larval stage, the larvae form into a cocoon that is a small and sticky casing. Pupae then emerge from the cocoons as adult fleas that feed on a host (your pet) to begin the cycle once more.
How to tell my pet has fleas?
Spotting fleas on your pet is very unlikely since they are so small in size, especially if your pet’s fur is a darker color. If your pet has light fur, you might be able to see little black specs moving about the fur. You might also see flea dirt spread through your pet’s fur, on bed sheets, or other surfaces your pet spends time on.
Fleas bite and suck blood from your pet as often as up to every 5 minutes, which can cause your pet pain. Each bite from a flea leaves a small red sore on your pet’s skin. If your pet has fleas, you’ll know by changes in behavior. It’s likely your pet suffers from a flea infestation if you notice any of the following:
- Excessive scratching
- Excessive licking or grooming
- Biting at the skin
- Hair loss as a result of excessive grooming and scratching
- Small, red inflamed bumps on your pet’s skin, usually in a line
- Pale gums, due to loss of blood
When are fleas most active?
Fleas can be a threat to your pets year-round, especially in warmer climates. Fleas thrive in warm temperatures with high temperature. Late spring, summer, and early fall are considered the high season when fleas become most active. Even in the off season, fleas may still be active and hop onto your pet. Remember, prevention is the key to keep your pet safe from fleas.
Well. its that time again- flea season! Last year my friend’s cats brought fleas into our home. It was not fun trying to rid the house and the animals of the fleas The bombing , powder, sprays, and washing seemed endless. I immediately put a Seresto flea color on Bella and her cats. Have had no problem since. Please make sure you check your fur baby frequently for these tiny fleas that could kill if let go.
If you chose to order any pet supplies please go to the banner of your choice on this site and click on the link. Then Lovinmypup.com will get a small percentage of the sale from your purchase. This helps defray the cost of hosting this site so you can continue to enjoy the articles. . My primary concern is to educate pet parents but any little bit will help keep us up and running. Please help us stay afloat!
At Lovinmypup we have tried to accommodate all pet parents and their fur babies’ needs with banner/links to the various popular on line stores. the banners are located to the right of this page (lap top) or beneath the articles (smart phone). There are traditional pet stores as well as well as specialty stores for gifts that would make any pet parent ecstatic! There is also a link to Amazon, Chewy, and Walmart, 1800PetMeds to name a few. You can purchase anything that Amazon and Walmart sell. Check out the banner link for Embark Vet (DNA testing for pups). DNA testing for Humans and Dogs is an up and coming field of science. Learn the idiosyncrasies of your pups genetic composition and what health concerns that you might be faced with in the future Just click on the links and shop for pet products and more, as well as fabulous gifts for the pet fanatics on your lists! . We thank you in advance for your assistance in keeping this site operational.
Make sure you share your love with your pet each and every day!