Preying on pets, animals and even humans, fleas are pesky wingless parasites found in countries all across the world. Feeding off the blood of humans, our much-loved household pets and a variety of other animals, flea bites and flea infestations can be both annoying and dangerous. Causing an intense itch and leading to infections due to scratching and irritation, fleas can wreak havoc in your home.
As fleas use a wide selection of hosts, diseases can be transferred from one host to another. Fleas are known for transmitting tapeworm larvae and even the disease murine typhus. The most common fleas in Australia impact cats and dogs while sometimes impacting humans.
If you suspect that someone in your household has been bitten by fleas, it’s important to identify the cause of bites quickly. By acting fast, you can treat flea bites effectively and avoid discomfort and irritation. Plus, if you know that your property is home to fleas, you’re able to complete thorough flea treatments to rid your space of fleas for good.
Common symptoms and characteristics of flea bites include:
When it comes to identifying insects and bugs, it can be hard to discern between relatively harmless critters and damaging fleas. In general, fleas are wingless, oval shaped and grow to around 2 and 8mm long. Deep brown in colour, they have disproportionately small heads in comparison to their bodies. They have six legs in total and utilise their large hind legs to jump long distances with speed and ease.
Fleas can often be seen on pets with the naked eye and may even be able to be spotted on furniture and surfaces in the home.
Fleas are incredibly resilient creatures, with adult fleas being able to survive months between feedings. This means that they’re often able to go by relatively undetected for long periods of time. Fleas use their saw-line mandibles – or jaws – to cut through the skin. They often target easily accessible and exposed areas like legs or feet.
Flea saliva contains anticoagulants which encourages blood to keep flowing after a bite. Females lay their light-coloured oval eggs after feeding, and larvae cocoon themselves within just a few weeks of hatching.
Fleas are tempted to emerge from their cocoons by vibration, such as footsteps or motion. This can often explain why humans receive flea bites after entering a home that’s been unoccupied for a while.
Think your home may have a flea problem? Get started on a flea treatment fast. At The Pest Guys, we specialise in providing effective flea control in Perth. Offering comprehensive pest control packages, our professionals utilise tailored treatments, equipment and solutions to protect your home against a suite of pests, insects and rodents – including harmful fleas.
Find out more about flea control in Perth. Contact us today on (08) 6201 2013.