Tips For Identifying a Flea Infestation in Your Potential New Home
Do you often find your pet furiously scratching himself? Do you notice red bite marks on your ankles and lower legs?
You might have a few uninvited guests in your home.
A flea infestation is perhaps one of the worst nightmares that pet owners have.
Fleas are parasites, which means that these insects rely on other creatures, usually your pet dogs and cats. It is not unusual for fleas to bite humans.
In pets, one of the earliest signs of an infestation that you will see is your pet constantly scratching and chewing. Sometimes, you may even see the fleas scurrying over your dog or cat’s fur. Apart from these, you may notice bald patches or irritation and reddening of your furry little pal’s skin. But perhaps worst of all, fleas have been known to transmit other parasites, including tapeworm, to pets.
In humans, one of the most noticeable signs of an infestation is the appearance of red marks on ankles and lower legs. If there is no apparent reason for the itching, and the itching disappears after some time, it is highly likely that your home is infested with fleas. Flea bites itch due to the insect’s saliva. In some people, flea bites can cause an allergic reaction and infections. Fleas can transmit tapeworms to humans.
Your best defense against fleas is prevention. If you are moving into a new property, here’s how you can check for an infestation.
Perform a sock test
Wear white socks which are long enough to cover your calves. Afterwards, walk around the property for some time. If there are areas where carpets are installed, make sure that you spend enough time there.
If there are fleas in the property, you will notice brown or black specks on your socks.
Look for flea droppings
Adult fleas leave droppings known as flea dirt for their young. These droppings, which look like black pepper, are consumed by young fleas and you will usually find these on the floor and carpets.
To perform this test, find a white towel and moisten it. If you find specks that you suspect to be flea dirt, wipe these using the moist towel. If you notice red streaks after wiping the towel, the property is infested with fleas.
Attract fleas using heat and water
Fleas are attracted by heat. And if the utilities are up and running in the property you are moving into, you might want to do this test.
First, you will need a lamp, a bowl of warm water, and dish washing liquid. Put the dish washing liquid in the bowl of warm water until it is slightly soapy. Leave the bowl on the floor and put the lamp over the bowl.
If there are fleas, you will see these insects jump into the bowl. The detergent in the warm water can kill the fleas.
According to a Modesto pest control company, a flea infestation can start with fleas lurking outdoors, preferring dark and moist areas on your property.
To see whether the perimeter of your home harbors fleas, do the sock test outside. Pay special attention to the area near trees, shrubs and beneath the porch.