5 Ways to Prevent Flea Problems in Dogs | Series Part 2 of 2
We love our dogs, but no one loves having to deal with a flea problems or (worse) an infestation! Besides being a major irritation for both you and your dog, fleas can trigger allergies and skin irritation. They can also transmit bacteria and tapeworms. The best way to keep you and your dog from suffering is to actively protect your home from fleas. We recommend five ways to keep your dog and home flea free. Consider taking the time to implement at least a few of these tips — the more you use, the fewer flea problems with which you will have to contend.
1 – Dog Flea Repellent: Protection
Most of the fleas that your dog picks up will come from outdoors. Short of sequestering your dog inside during the dog flea season (not suggested) one of the most effective ways of keeping your dog flea free is to apply a flea repellent before going outside. We recommend Nature’s Protection™ Flea & Tick Herbal Bug Spray. Formulated by Dr. Bob Goldstein, this daily use, all-natural spray is a blend of herbs and essential oils that have a fresh, minty fragrance. The preventative power and minty scent of these gentle oils are non-offensive to people and dogs, but hated by fleas. The spray is great for hikes, walks, romps on the beach, boating, or simply lazy days in the yard. We suggest spraying the paws, underbelly, and gently mist the back and neck, daily. Reapply after swimming or getting wet. You can use it on yourself too. Safe for adults and children as well as dogs!
2 – Yard Flea Problems: Treatment
Enjoy a flea-free yard with proven yard spray that is safe around kids, pets, bees, and butterflies. Cedar oil, the main ingredient in this product, is an essential oil that kills and repels fleas. It suffocates fleas, repels them, and eliminates their eggs and larvae. Formulated with the highest-quality oils, the plant-based spray is proven to kill, repel, and prevent 98-100% of fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. The ready-to-use outdoor spray is quick and easy. It attaches directly to a garden hose and is automatically diluted as the water comes out. The Outdoor Pest Control Concentrate for Yard + Garden is more cost-effective and is perfect for those who like to get more hands-on with tasks. It must be properly diluted and requires a separate applicator.
3 – Indoor Flea Problems: Prevention
Prevention is the best cure for any and all flea problems. Though many pet pest control products exist, they rely on chemicals like insecticides and antiparasitics. We prefer a more natural approach!
Diatomaceous earth is crushed or ground fossils of single-celled algae, called Diatoms. Their skeletons are made of a natural substance called silica. Food-grade diatomaceous earth is purified to contain a maximum of 0.5-2% crystalline silica. This level is considered non-toxic, meaning it can be ingested safely. For use in pets, humans, and gardens, only food-grade diatomaceous earth should be used. It is extremely effective for killing fleas that are hiding in carpets, beds and baseboards. It is not harmful to dogs or humans, even if ingested. Sprinkle generously on areas where fleas might be hiding. After three days, vacuum up the residual powder. Repeat if necessary.
4 – Wash, Vacuum, Repeat
Anywhere your dog goes, there’s a potential for fleas, eggs, and larvae to drop off. Even if you’ve removed all the fleas from your dog, if you don’t take steps to remove them from your house as well, the cycle will never end.
Without a host (you or your dog), adult fleas can survive for up to 3 months. During that time, they’ll simply wait for something to walk past, and when it does, they’ll hop on! Flea eggs hatch into larvae after around 10 days. The larvae can lie dormant for up to 9 months. This means if you move into a house that had flea problems, it likely still has flea larvae waiting to hatch. The larvae are stimulated to mature into adult fleas by vibrations and warmth.
Vacuuming your house at least once a week will help remove flea eggs and larvae. Make sure to vacuum soft furnishings and carpets. It’s also a good idea to empty the bag or canister straight into the trash outside.
Put your dog’s bedding through a hot wash, and tumble dry at least once a month. If you’re currently battling a flea infestation, increase the frequency of washing. The heat from the wash and tumble dry will kill any fleas, flea eggs, and larvae on the bedding. Check the manufacturer’s instructions first, as some dog beds, including self-heating beds, can’t be washed on a hot cycle.
5 – The Stuff That Can’t be Washed
Steam-cleaning is a great way of killing fleas, eggs, and larvae on the soft furnishings and carpets around your house that can’t be laundered. Vacuum afterwards to remove any dead fleas, eggs, and larvae that were killed by the heat of the steam.
Flea Problems: Natural Solutions
Spring and Summer are the most challenging seasons for fleas (unless you live in a year-round temperate weather state, such as Florida, when it is a all four seasons concern). The natural approach to preventing flea problems is highly recommended for dog households. Using one, all or a combination of the 5 methods, you will be able to keep fleas out of your home and off of your dog!
Goodness for Pets is an all-natural pet supply store and boutique catering to animals and those who love them. Since 2004, we have been providing unparalleled service to our community in Naples, FL. Our goal is to be a valuable and dependable resource for our customers, offering products and services that are distinguished by quality, safety, excellence, and creativity. We specialize in holistic solutions with an emphasis on nutrition while acknowledging that each pet and pet owner has unique needs and requirements.