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Flea Facts Part II Prevention and Control

Flea Prevention and Control focus on killing adult fleas, preventing eggs from hatching and on killing larvae, eggs and cocooned fleas when and where possible. A full prevention and control program can include flea preventative medications for your pet, proper cleaning of all bedding, vacuuming home living areas, yard treatments and limited insecticide surface treatments.

Because of the issue with flea cocoons being virtually impervious to insecticides for over 200 days, we don’t recommend do it yourself room foggers or other indoor insecticides. The risk of poisoning your family/pets to some degree or another is simply not worth the benefit in term of flea control. Regardless of whether you choose to use room foggers as part of an insect control program, never ever use such foggers where there are any pregnant pets or people. No exceptions regardless of apparent need.

  1. Bedding: Adult fleas, flea eggs and larvae die at temperatures above 95°F. Wash all bedding in as hot water as possible. The water must be hotter than 95°F. Bedding must be washed at intervals of 5 days or less. You do not want to give newly hatched larvae time to mature to the point they cocoon themselves.

    Confirm your washing temperature! Don’t assume setting your washing machine’s temperature to hot will result in a wash temperature over 95°F. You can check your wash temperature by waiting till your washing machine finishes filling. Then use a food safety thermometer to confirm actual wash temperature. You may need to set your hot water tank’s temperature setting a few degrees hotter to achieve the desired wash temperature. Do not go overboard on raising your water tank’s temperature. You don’t want to risk scalding people by having too hot water.

  2. Vacuuming: On the same day as you wash the bedding, thoroughly vacuum all floors, furniture and carpeting. Pay special attention to all baseboard and floor board cracks. Unfold hide-a-way beds and vacuum all cushion cracks. Throw the vacuum bag away into your outside garbage can immediately after vacuuming.

  3. Surface treatment sprays/flea shampoos – pets: These are intended solely to kill adult fleas on infested animals. They have no significant flea deterrent after 48 hours.

  4. Surface treatment sprays - non-pets: You can use the same pet flea sprays to kill adult fleas in rugs and on furniture prior to vacuuming. Note that this is only effective for killing active adult fleas and larvae. Test hidden areas for undesirable staining first!

  5. Chews and topical pet medications: We only recommend prescription required chews and spot applications. This is because older preventatives are simply not as effective as they used to be. Many older preventatives only last 2 to 3 weeks instead of the over 4 weeks from when first introduced. Due to state law, we can only issue pet flea medication prescriptions for established patients. This means each of your pets need to be established within the last 12 months with us before we can issue a prescription for them. This is a legal requirement. Please do not ask us to make an exception.

  6. Yard Treatments: Yard insecticide treatments are an optional supplement for flea prevention and control. A properly applied insecticide designed for the purpose will keep down the adult flea levels in your yard for 3~4 months at a time. No yard treatment will eliminate all fleas in your yard.

    For large yards, only treat areas immediately near your home and those areas most frequented by your pets.

Always read, understand and follow all instructions for all sprays, medications and insecticides used!

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