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Don’t Blame the Kitty for Cat Fleas!

By Chris Williams on August 12, 2016.

My daughter took in a stray kitten that she found in our yard. Now our indoor dog has fleas! The vet said the dog has cat fleas so I think we need to get rid of the cat in order to get rid of the fleas. Right? H. H., Hollis, NH

Sorry, wrong. Getting rid of the kitten won’t get rid of your dog’s flea problem. Cat fleas will be just as happy feeding only on your dog. In fact, although there is a “dog flea,” cat fleas are by far the most common fleas found on dogs, whether there is a cat in the house, or not (see The Main Flea on Dogs is the Cat Flea).

Don’t blame the kitten, she’s suffered enough. Hopefully, your veterinarian is now treating both pets for fleas. Once you get a handle on the situation, you should be able to eliminate your flea problem if you make sure to treat your home as well as your pets.

Make Sure You Treat for Flea Larvae, Too

While people understand that adult fleas are biting their pet and sucking its blood, they often don’t realize that, at the same time, larval fleas are developing off of the animal in carpeting and bedding in their home. These larvae mature and turn into adult fleas providing a whole new crop of fleas even after the pets have been treated. That’s why it’s important to treat both the pet where adult fleas live and carpeting and pet bedding where the flea larvae live. For details on how fleas develop, see Fleas Still a Problem.

The success of your flea control efforts may depend on whether or not the new kitty is allowed to go outdoors. Fleas can live and develop in yards during warm weather and treated pets can be reinfested when they go outside (see Fleas Can Reinfest Your Home From Outside). In some cases, an outdoor treatment is added to a flea management program.

Contact us at Colonial Pest. Our flea experts can inspect your home for developing fleas and can set up a professional flea management program that will let you and your pets rest easy. Our work is guaranteed so you can give that kitten a forever home.

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