How to Get Rid of Fleas on Your Carpet
Pet owners need to know how to get rid of fleas from carpets. Insects tend to find homes in carpets and thereafter infest pets repeatedly. Once an infestation has been established, the pests spread out to other parts of your home quickly making them harder to track and get rid of.
If you're not careful, these tiny pests can even invade your wardrobes and cause rashes and allergies, and in some cases, more extreme illness in both you and your pets. People with babies at home need to be particularly careful.
Use a Vacuum
Once you discover you have fleas, vacuum your floors and the furniture daily. Each time you vacuum, dispose of the vacuum bag immediately after sealing it securely. If the vacuum bag isn't secured, the fleas will crawl out and re-infest the home. Fleas are tiny and can easily get through even the smallest crevice.
When you store the vacuum after you finish using it, keep it free of fleas by inserting a flea collar in the bag.
Be sure to check areas where your pet spends most of its time, such as beside your bed, a favorite chair, or their bed. These areas are where you are likely to find the most fleas, so vacuum them thoroughly and frequently if you suspect a flea infestation.
Vacuum the carpet thoroughly so that all the adult fleas and their pupae, larvae, and eggs are sucked into the dust bag. Doing so on a regular basis will ensure that fleas do not get a chance to settle down on your carpet.
In extreme cases, resort to professional help to get rid of the fleas from your carpet and your home.
Baking Soda and Common Salt
Mix together two to three tablespoons of baking soda and two to three tablespoons of common salt in equal proportions. Put the mixture you created in a dispenser. Spread the mixture on your carpet, pet beds, and all rugs in your home.
Once this is done, allow the mixture to stay in the applied regions for at least three to four hours. The salt and baking soda will flush out fleas as the mixture tends to suffocate them. After this time, vacuum the carpet thoroughly, taking into consideration the tips mentioned above.
Lemon Juice Treatment
You can also fight a flea infestation by using lemons. To begin, cut three to four lemons and slice them finely. Boil these pieces of lemon for about 30 minutes. Allow the mixture to cool down before moving on to the next step.
You must now filter out the lemon pieces and fill a spray bottle with the diluted lemon juice water. Spray this water on your pet, carpet, and rugs. The citrus scent emanating from the mixture and the natural oils in it will kill the fleas.
Once it has sat for a short while, make sure to vacuum the carpet because there is a chance that any eggs that may have been left behind during the treatment will hatch at a later stage, meaning your home could be infested with fleas all over again.
Also, do not reuse the dust bag you use to vacuum the carpet; just dispose of it safely as it may have live flea eggs, which may reinfest the carpet. Spray the carpet with a solution of lavender oil in water, if you don’t like the citrus scent.
Natural Flea Repellents
Add 10 to 15 drops of citronella and rosemary oil to a gallon of water and spray the solution on infected areas. Citronella and rosemary oil act as natural pest repellents, similar to lemon.
Numerous insecticides are available in the market; however, they should be used only in extreme cases of flea infestations, not if you see one flea in on your pet. Furthermore, if you are using insecticides, use them only on carpets.
Insecticides usually have a very strong odor, which might persist for days. Remember that these toxic chemicals might harm the pet if it accidentally ingests them.
Check your pet regularly for flea infections. You should also bathe your pet regularly using flea soaps and shampoos if they have fleas. Eucalyptus- or lavender-scented products are highly recommended for this purpose. Check with your vet before doing this, though, as pets can be sensitive to certain ingredients.
Make a natural pesticide by mixing one part table salt with eight parts Borax powder (a naturally occurring mineral). Spread the mixture throughout your home, paying special attention to stairways, under beds, in your pet's bed, and under carpets and area rugs.
The mixture is perfectly safe to leave on the floors after working it in with a broom or stiff bristled brush. Allow the mixture to do its work for 48 hours, then vacuum it up per the vacuuming tips mentioned above.
An alternative pesticide can be made by mixing 1/2 cup of boric acid to three cups of diatomaceous earth, also known as DE. Use the same method as described for the previous recipe.
Sprinkle DE in dog runs and the shady areas of your yard. This will decrease the flea population if you use it about once a week, and it is perfectly safe for your pets to be around.
Keep in mind that fleas cannot live in sunny areas, so there's no need to treat areas that get at least six hours of sunlight a day. Focus instead on shaded areas.
Another natural option is using banana peels to get rid of fleas. You will need to use several pounds of bananas to get the required amount of banana peels for this project. But don’t worry. If you don't have a banana tree growing in your backyard, you can usually buy them for cheap.
Use the leftover bananas you don’t want to eat in banana bread or freeze them to use in smoothies or recipes at a later date. If you have any leftover peels, you can feed them to your rose bush.
After acquiring the bananas and peeling them, you need to distribute the banana peels evenly throughout the backyard. Generally, one peel per 5-10 square feet will be enough to get the job done. It’s better to use more peels than too little.
Put the banana peels on a plate in several different locations throughout the house as well. However, beware of attracting fruit flies. If you see any, you should get rid of the peels inside your home right away.
When the fleas eat the banana peel, they will die. Fleas are attracted to the smell of the peels, but their system cannot handle the enzymes that are present in the peel. The longer the fruit peel sits, the more effective they are in killing off fleas.
Once the peels have turned completely black and shriveled up, you can decide if you need to add more peels or not. Inspect your grass to determine if there are any fleas remaining.
Keep Your Home Clean
Wash floor mats and area rugs in hot water three times a week, and dry them thoroughly in the dryer. Heat kills adult fleas, larvae, and eggs. Do not leave rugs or mats damp, as this provides the perfect breeding ground for fleas.
There are still some extra tips to keep in mind when combating fleas in your home. First, never use flea shampoo on kittens or puppies. Instead, use pet soap to repel fleas from your young pet's fur.
Flea populations are more prominent in spring and fall, so be sure to treat your home early to prevent infestation. Also, unless the larvae and eggs are killed, reinfestation will occur.
What Problems Do Fleas Cause?
Beyond just being awful to look at, flea infestations can cause a myriad of issues for both humans and animals. First off, flea infestations can cause a lot of stress, impacting your mental health.
Fleas can also carry pathogens that can cause diseases, including plague.
On your pet, fleas can also lead to hair loss, dry skin, and lesions. Fleas can also cause diseases in your pet if they are not dealt with immediately after being discovered.
What Are a Few Major Facts About Fleas?
So what exactly are fleas anyway? Fleas are blood-feeding parasites. They are more common in warm weather climates than in colder weather ones and have an easier time reproducing in warm areas.
This doesn't mean they can't be found at all in cold weather spots. Fleas can survive in heated homes during the winter.
Fleas are small, making them hard to see and making it difficult to know if you have a flea problem by appearances alone. Adult fleas are smaller than a grain of rice and do not have wings.
Fleas are jumpers. They can jump thousands of times in a row without tiring and can also jump very high. Despite being smaller than a grain of rice, fleas can jump up to 13 inches. This is part of why fleas are so dangerous. They are not only hard to spot but also move around incredibly quickly.
Fleas also reproduce quickly, again making them difficult to deal with. Fleas can lay up to 40 eggs in a day. Female fleas lay an average of more than 1,000 eggs in its lifetime. The small eggs can fall into carpet, cracks in floors, grass—just about anywhere really!
Eggs are dormant anywhere from two days to two weeks. Once they hatch, the fleas are larvae for two days if the weather is warm. If the weather is cold, however, they can stay this way for up to 200 days.
They then change into a cocoon stage, lasting five days to two weeks. In some conditions, the fleas can stay in the cocoon stage for much longer before hatching into an adult flea. At this point, the flea will look for a host it can get blood from and starts to feed right after landing on its new host.
Fleas are also strong and can list things that are up to 150 times heavier than the flea's own weight.
While fleas are commonly associated with dogs, they can actually be found on any mammal. It can be tricky to see the fleas if your pet has a thick coat of hair, making them difficult to detect.
What Kills Fleas Instantly?
Most flea treatments work instantly. As previously mentioned, fleas spread quickly and can jump high and fast. If treatments did not work quickly, they would not be useful.
That's why the above mentioned flea treatments all work incredibly quickly to rid your home, yourself, and your pets from fleas.
What’s the Fastest, Easiest Way to Kill Fleas?
None of the above mentioned methods of flea control are too complicated or costly. Most can be done using materials you will already have in your home, like banana peels.
If you think you may have fleas, start by taking the steps mentioned above in the vacuuming section and use baking soda. If this does not solve the problem, you may want to try the other steps.
Only revert to pesticides if all else fails, as this method should only be used in more extreme circumstances and should not be the first thing you do to try to rid yourself of fleas.
Nobody wants fleas in their home. They are unsightly and can make you and your pets very itchy and uncomfortable. By following the above steps, though, you can get rid of fleas and prevent them from coming back.
Make sure to take preventative measures like having a clean, well maintained home to prevent you from having to get rid of fleas all over again shortly after getting rid of them the first time.
If you have pets, make sure to check them for fleas regularly as they can carry these pesky creatures into your home, making them a frequent culprit of why there are fleas in a home.