Summer in Britain is usually warm and wet – the perfect conditions for a flea infestation. And the best way to deal with fleas is to prevent them in the first place.
But first, know your enemy
Understanding what makes fleas tick is key to keeping your pet – and home – flea-free. Here are some helpful facts about the critters, along with methods for avoiding them:
Fleas like it warm. They prefer temperatures of over 20°C, which is why they tend to flourish in the summer.
Fleas will bed down with your pet. Fleas love your pet’s bedding. If you’re worried about an infestation make sure you wash the entire thing, not just the cover. If this isn’t possible, it might be best to buy a new one.
Fleas carry disease. Fleas aren’t just an itchy nuisance; they can spread some nasty diseases (remember the Great Plague?). Make sure everyone stays healthy by treating your pet – and home - for fleas regularly.
Fleas can cause anaemia. In young animals, a severe flea infestation can cause anaemia. Regularly check your pet’s gums – if they’re pale pink or white, it could be time to see a vet.
Fleas can lay eggs anywhere in your home. You need to treat your entire home for fleas, not just your pet’s bed. You’ll never truly get rid of a flea infestation unless you destroy every last egg. They particularly enjoy floorboard cracks, skirting boards and underneath furniture.
Fleas can go unnoticed. When you’ve owned a pet for a while, you become less responsive to flea bites, which means you may not notice an infestation in your home. Stay aware and take action if you think you have a problem.