How to Tell if You Have Fleas in Your House

Fleas are minute insects that hide in the cracks and crevices of furniture, carpets and mattresses. Here are some tips to identify flea infestation.
HomeQuicks Staff
Last Updated: Mar 12, 2018
Most of us are aware of the fact that flea infestation of the house is one of the worst problems of a lifetime. Once they infest the house, it is difficult to get rid of them, as they can lie dormant in almost all stages. They can easily hide themselves within the cracks and crevices of the furniture as well as the mattress and other furnishings. Their tough and hardy body makes it difficult to kill them by squeezing. They can also survive in a wide range of climatic conditions. However, this does not mean that you cannot eliminate them from the house. These insects can lays thousands of eggs within a month's time and rapidly spread. So, it will be easier, if you take steps at an early stage. For that purpose, you must watch out for signs of fleas in your house.

Signs of Fleas in House

It is a common fact that fleas are blood-sucking parasitic insects that are minute in size. This makes it difficult to notice them, when they are in few numbers. These insects are of different types and they thrive on the blood of mammals and birds. While fleas are not found to attack human body, there is a specific species called Pulex irritans, which is found to infest human hair. But, this is very rare as nowadays people are hygienic enough to develop such problems. These human fleas can survive on animals like pigs, monkeys, opposums and rats.

While pets are considered the most common reasons for flea infestation of house, even homes without any pet may have fleas. Apart from inflicting itchy bites and allergic reactions, these insects can also transmit diseases. So, it is very much necessary to get rid of them at the earliest. Check for signs of fleas in your house.
  • First of all, check the body of your pet, if you have any. If your pet is scratching its skin continuously, then it could be due to fleas in their body. This problem is mainly seen in those pets who spent a lot of time outdoors.
  • You have to search for fleas on the coat on the animal, especially beneath its tail, upper part of the legs and around the neck. You may find live adult fleas that are like small insects that are reddish-brown in color. They have vertically compressed bodies and are adapted to jump. You may also use a flea comb for searching these insects on the pet's body.
  • You may also find small black spots on the fur of the animal. These are nothing but flea droppings that are actually dried blood of the host. You can confirm this by putting these droppings in water. They will turn reddish brown in color. Even small whitish eggs can be found on the body of your pet.
  • Such flea droppings may also be found on the bedding of the animal. If there are fleas in large numbers, even the floors and carpets may have such droppings. This can be seen, if you wipe the floor or carpets with a damp, white cloth.
  • One of the classic signs of flea infestation is flea bites. If your house has fleas, then there are chances that you too get inflicted with flea bites. Such bites are often found as red, itchy welts that are usually concentrated in a particular area. Some of the affected people may develop allergic reactions too.
Once you have confirmed that there are fleas in the house as well as the pet's body, you have to take immediate measures to eradicate the same. You have to treat your pet, as per the instructions of the vet. Use flea combs to remove these parasites from the pet's body. Bathe your pet with a mixture of a few drops of liquid detergent and water. Clean the house spotlessly. Vacuum the house daily and put some borax in the vacuum bag as this will kill the fleas. You may use a mixture of equal amounts of salt and baking soda for killing fleas. Spread this mixture on the carpet and other furniture and vacuum the next morning. Even diatomaceous earth can be used as a replacement for this mixture. You may also use some flea traps for getting rid of fleas. If there is no respite for the flea problem, then you can approach pest control professionals who are experts in exterminating fleas.
combing with flea comb
Dog scratching skin
Pulex irritans