Fleas on your pet or flea bites around one’s ankles are both hallmark indications of flea presence in your home. Sanitation is critical in areas where the animal sleeps or rests. Indoors, carpet should be vacuumed and bedding should be washed. Outdoors, dog houses, bedding, and other materials should be washed and placed in the sun. If desired or if the adult flea infestation is significantly large, consult with a pest control professional for additional insecticide treatments. Once a flea infestation has become established, management efforts both on the host and in the environment must be made simultaneously.
An adult female will feed on the host for around one week, then drop off the host and find a secluded place for egg development. Cracks and crevices in houses, garages and dog runs are ideal locations. As adults, both males and females will attach to hosts and feed, although the males only feed for short periods. The overall cycle can be completed in just over two months, but frequently will take longer if there are few hosts available or in cold temperatures. Ticks are notoriously long-lived, and can live as long as three to five months in each stage without feeding. In Florida, the cycle can occur year-round both inside houses and in outside kennels and dog runs. The earlier the infestation is discovered and addressed, the easier it will be to control. Monitoring and grooming dogs, particularly upon return from kennels or locations where other dogs are present, is the best way to detect infestations early.