When it comes to ridding one’s home of fleas, many people limit their attention to the live, adult fleas, overlooking the flea eggs. However, the latter is actually a major source of flea infestation.
Each female flea lays in excess of 30 eggs each day. A household flea population that is in the hundreds today could number several thousand a few weeks from now. Removing flea eggs is thus an essential part of any flea control program.
Read on as we explore exactly how to go about doing this.
About flea eggs
Adult fleas are elusive enough but the eggs they produce can be even harder to spot.
Approximately 0.5 mm in diameter and white, they may resemble flakes of dandruff or grains of salt.
Unlike flea dirt or feces, they don’t cling to the coat of your pet, either; instead, they roll off and become deposited in areas of your home where your pets spend a lot of time. This includes carpets, chairs and couches, beds, and in cracks and crevices near these areas.
How to kill flea eggs
If you don’t sufficiently control flea eggs, fleas can maintain a stubborn presence in your home.
You can kill the adult fleas, but if the eggs remain, then in a few weeks or months, you will be back to where you started. This is why it is so important to eradicate the flea eggs from your home as well as the live, fully formed adult fleas. But just how do you go about this?
By far the most effective method of ridding your home of those pesky fleas eggs is to thoroughly wash and vacuum the furniture and areas in your home where eggs could be deposited.
This will mean vacuuming your carpets and furniture (like couches and recliners) and washing bedding, pillows, and pet toys in hot water.
Make sure to seal up your vacuum bag and throw it away in your outside bin. If you have a bagless vacuum, bag up the contents, and seal the bag.
You can also try a steam cleaner on your carpet. This should kill all flea stages.
Next, apply insecticides. Insect growth regulators (IGRs) prevent eggs and larvae from developing while insecticides containing permethrin, imidacloprid, or dinotefuran kill adult fleas.
Spray all of your carpets and furniture (including under furniture), and be sure to pay special attention to the areas where your pets sleep, as flea eggs are most likely to be found in these locations. Read and follow all label instructions and make sure to keep your pets and family out of treated areas until the spray is dry.
If you’ve got a major flea problem in your home, you might be tempted to try a flea bomb (or fogger). This is not recommended.
Fogging is much like fumigating your house, making it dangerous for pets and people. Furthermore, it isn’t very effective because the insecticide is released upwards and settles on surfaces rather than penetrating cracks and crevices and getting under furniture and into carpet fibers. Their ingredients can also be also flammable.
Treat your pets!
Your pets themselves are another major hub for fleas and flea eggs so don’t forget to treat them as well.
Take your beloved pooch or feline outside and give them a good groom with a quality flea comb.
Next, wash your pet, ideally with flea shampoo. Combs remove at most 60% of fleas. The shampoo will remove more as well as washing away flea dirt and dead skin, which immature fleas feed on.
Be sure to get the right flea shampoo for your pet. Cats can be very sensitive to flea shampoos and should never be washed with dog flea shampoos.
Then treat your cat or dog with a product like flea drops, that will prevent fleas from taking up future residence in your pet’s coat.
It’s also a good idea to have your pet on a monthly flea and tick preventive. These are available as pills and spot treatments. This will prevent future infestations and some are effective against intestinal parasites as well. Flea and tick preventives require a prescription from your veterinarian.
Here then is your step by step action plan for eliminating fleas and flea eggs from your home:
- Vacuum all carpets, floors, and furniture to remove flea eggs.
- Wash all bedding, blankets, pillows, and sheets to eliminate fleas and flea eggs.
- Spray carpets, furniture, pets’ bedding, etc. with IGR and adulticide.
- Take your pets outside and thoroughly go through their coat with a flea comb.
- Wash your animals’ coats with flea shampoo to remove any live fleas and flea eggs.
- Treat your pets with flea drops.
- Consider a monthly flea and tick preventive.
Here, then, is how to kill flea eggs and turn your home into a flea-free zone.
The earlier you notice a flea problem within your home and start taking steps to address it, the easier the situation will be to manage. Fleas breed very quickly, so populations can explode if untreated.
Eradicating the flea eggs in your house is the surest way of getting your household flea problems under control.