Signs Your Home May Have a Flea Infestation
- Small, dot-like insects hopping on your furniture – Fleas show up in your bedding, furniture, drapes, or floor cracks.
- Pets scratch or bite their fur excessively – Flea infestations often start with household pets, usually dogs and cats, who go outside in the dirt or come in contact with pets already infected with fleas.
- Developing hives or a rash near feet and ankles – Flea bites on humans are usually located near the feet, and often develop as a red rash or hives.
A flea infestation can be a huge problem for many Wisconsin homeowners, and the professionals at Ehlers are here to help. We offer comprehensive, environmentally-friendly methods of pest management services Schedule an appointment with one of our professional exterminators today.
What Do Fleas Look Like?
Fleas are reddish-brown, growing up to 1/8 inch in length with three pairs of legs. Enlarged hind legs enable fleas to leap up to 7 inches vertically and 13 inches horizontally. They are typically found in places where animals sleep and frequent, preferring to attach to a host such as a cat, dog, or human. Fleas are ectoparasites—animals needing to live on the outside of the host’s body and feed off its blood in order to live and reproduce.
Fleas lay their eggs when animals sleep, usually in thick, fibrous material such as carpet strands or thickly woven fabric. Female fleas lay up to 200 eggs at a time, which can led to a massive infestation in a fairly short time. Urban wildlife is often the guilty culprit for introducing fleas to household pets and leading them into homes.
For more identification tips, check out our pest identifcation guide.
Flea Bite First Aid
Flea bites on both pets and people can cause severe allergic reactions, particularly for those who are sensitive to the saliva fleas inject when biting. Flea bites on humans are easily identified by clusters of red, itchy bumps which often bleed slightly from a single puncture at the center of the bite. Bites usually appear in clusters of 3 or 4, although an entire area of one's body can be covered with dozens, even hundreds, of flea bites.
As painfully itchy as flea bites are, scratching only makes matters worse by opening the door to an infection and a prolonged rash. Here are the best tips we've found for dealing with flea bites:
- Wash the affected area with a good antiseptic soap
- Apply 1% hydrocortisone cream and a take a dose of Benadryl or a similar antihistamine to control the itching and swelling
- If the itching is really bad, apply ice packs and Calamine lotion
Contact Ehler's Pest Management today for more information about our residential and commercial Wisconsin Flea control services!