Keep your pet clean and flea free
Fleas are professional hitch-hikers and will happily ride your dog into your house. After play dates, hikes and dog adventures, do a quick once-over to make sure your pup isn’t carrying unwanted guests (like ticks, too!). Bathe and comb your dog regularly, brush your cat regularly, and definitely talk to your vet about the flea prevention treatment that will work best for your pet and lifestyle.
Vacuum Everything Constantly
Some people suggest daily, others every three days and some say weekly. We suggest doing it as often as you can. Empty your vacuum canister (in the outside trash) because you’ll just be removing fleas and eggs, not killing them. Put a flea collar in the canister after it is empty to help prevent stragglers.
Linens, your sheets, dog blankets, dog beds, soft toys or anything that can be thrown in the washing machine: Do it. Although it’s more energy efficient to wash in cool water, do these loads using hot water, and dry with high heat if the material can handle it.
Treat your back yard and front yard
There is no doubt that your flea problem will worsen when work is being done in your yard. The fleas that were happily hanging out in the yard needed somewhere to go, and that somewhere will be your comfy bed. Here are some ways to make your yard less inviting to fleas:
- Sun – Fleas, much like bloodsucking vampire relatives, don’t love the sun. Cut back any bushes or plants that create shady spots for flea families to make a home, and keep your grass cut short.
- Plant an herb garden – Fleas don’t like strong-smelling herbs and plants. Planting these near your doors and windows can help keep fleas from hanging around too long. Thyme, sage, eucalyptus, clove, basil, lavender, mint and citronella are all good choices.
- Natural predators – Snakes, ants, beetles, spiders, frogs and lizards eat fleas. We are not suggesting you have any of these creatures roaming around in your house, but keep that in mind before attempting to get rid of any that are hanging out in your yard.
- Welcome nematodes – Think of nematodes as the probiotics of your yard. These tiny multicellular animals are already in your garden – you just have to increase their population so there are more out there to take out those pesky fleas while they’re still in their pupae and larval stages.
- Call the professionals – if you’re dealing with a bad case of fleas, it might be more than a single mortal can handle. If all else fails, call a professional exterminator. Let them know you have dogs or cats and follow their instructions on how to keep your pets safe while your house is being treated.