By the time you spot a flea on your dog, an infestation has likely already begun. Fleas live in shady places outdoors and will quickly attach themselves to any animal they can find. If your dog is not protected from fleas and ticks, they will become the next breeding ground for these pests. Once fleas have entered your home, they can be extremely stubborn to leave.
Fleas: Tiny and Tough
Between the rate at which fleas reproduce and their protective outer shell, it is nearly impossible to get rid of fleas. Fleas thrive on laying eggs in fabric and fur; two habitats that are abundant in your home. A female flea can lay up to 50 eggs per day. These eggs are almost microscopic and are laid in carpet, rugs, linen, and pet hair.
Fleas have a strong external shell that acts as a skeleton to protect their body. This shell is nearly impossible to penetrate, making swatting at them virtually useless. To kill a flea by force, you have to penetrate the external shell, and when you have an infestation, this is essentially impossible to overcome.
If you have found that your home has become infested with fleas, use one of these dog flea home remedies so that you can reclaim yours and your pet’s home.
Remedy Option #1: Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is a fine powder that is made from the remains of algae. It is entirely natural and non-toxic to both people and animals, making it a safe and natural remedy for getting rid of fleas.
To treat your home with diatomaceous earth, you will sprinkle the powder throughout the home where the fleas are mostly found. This will be in rugs, carpets, and your pet’s bedding. Leave the diatomaceous earth to sit for 48 hours uninterrupted.
Within 48 hours, the fleas will eat the diatomaceous earth and kill them, as the diatomaceous earth acts as a glass to cut through the bodies of the fleas. After 48 hours, vacuum the areas of the home that were treated with diatomaceous earth.
Remedy Option #2: Dish Soap Flea Trap
Another method of getting rid of fleas is to set a trap. To do this, you will need a plate or bowl, some water, and a few drops of dish soap.
Take your plate or bowl and add some water to it. Then add a few drops of dish soap to the water. The fleas will migrate towards the dish and jump into the dish of water. The water and dish soap act as a glue. As soon as the flea jumps into the dish, they are stuck to the mixture. From there, you can discard the fleas by flushing them down the drain.
For best results, do this at night and place in the rooms with the most flea activity.
Remedy Option #3: Salt
Another remedy you can try without having to purchase additional treatment products like diatomaceous earth is to use ordinary table salt that you may have in your pantry. By sprinkling table salt onto rugs and carpets, you can dry the fleas out and vacuum them up without worrying about harming your pets in the process. You will want to leave the salt on the carpets and rugs for about two days before vacuuming so that the salt has time to kill the fleas.
Remedy Option #4: Flea Bath and Comb
If your dog is suffering from flea bites, you will need to bathe him or her with a gentle bath to get rid of the fleas that are currently on your pet’s body. Once you have bathed your dog, you should run a flea comb through your dog’s hair to ensure that you have removed all of the fleas and their eggs. A flea infestation occurs because eggs are laid, which makes removing eggs just as important as removing the fleas themselves.
Remedy Option #5: Wash, Rinse, and Repeat
When fleas have infested your pet and your home, you will need to treat all areas immediately. This includes bedding (both yours and your dog’s), carpet, rugs, and clothes. You should immediately wash all the fabrics in your home that a flea may try to call home. Essentially anything that your dog has come in contact with should be washed immediately. Washing these items will kill both fleas and their eggs, saving you from a potential flea infestation.
Once you have washed all of the items, you need to dry them to ensure that that the fleas and their eggs have been killed.
Preventing Fleas from Entering the Home
The best way to combat a flea infestation is to stop it before it even begins. For this, you can use natural flea repellants both inside and outside of your home to keep the fleas away.
Rosemary is a natural flea repellant that keeps fleas from entering your home when placed inside and outside of your home. To do this, all you need is to grind some fresh rosemary into a powder and sprinkle it in openings around your home that fleas may try to come through.
You can also add natural essential oils to the powder, like peppermint, fennel, and wormwood. Not only will this combination keep fleas away, but peppermint is also great for keeping spiders and other pests from entering the home.
If All Else Fails: Fog
No one wants to resort to setting a flea fogger off in their house, but sometimes it is unavoidable. Before pulling the trigger on the bomb (figuratively and literally), give these home remedies a shot first. It may take a few days of cleaning, vacuuming, and bathing, but it will all be worth it in the end when you can reclaim your home from these jumping parasites.
If setting off a flea bomb is the unavoidable answer, then make sure you have removed all people and pets from the home before activating the fogger. You will need to remain out of the home for the recommended allotted time, usually several hours, before re-entering the home. Once returning, discard the fogger and vacuum the house to get rid of the fleas.