What are fleas? The definition of a flea is as follows: A flea is defined as any wingless blood-sucking parasitic insect noted for ability to leap. It is an insect belonging to the genus Pulex, of the order Siphonaptera. They do not have wings, but have the power of leaping energetically. Their bite can be poisonous but everyone will react differently. If you are allergic to these pests you may experience blisters and rashes - see our flea bite pages for more info.
The Flea - Read about control, remedies and treatments including sprays, powders, collars and drops. An infestation can be a nightmare for any home owner. Understanding the most appropriate treatments available for the home is vital. Such treatments may include repellents for the carpet and upholstery, as well as natural repelling plants for the yard, garden or patio. Discouraging fleas could make a huge difference!
The Life Cycle of Fleas - Fleas have a 4 stage life cycle - the egg, the larvae, the pupae and the adult. The life cycle starts when the female fleas lays the eggs and at the same time deposits faeces (flea dirt) which primarily consist of digested blood. The eggs hatch into the larvae (which looks like a small maggot) which then spin small cocoons, called the pupae (pupa). After 1 week the pupa develops into an adult. There are approximately 2000 species of flea across the world.
What Diseases can Fleas transmit? - They can cause or transmit a number of diseases in both humans, pets and animals. The most common of the diseases caused by this parasite are as follows:
Plague, Bubonic plague, caused by Yersinia pestis from the flea that infects dogs, cats, rodents and other animals
Tapeworms called Dipylidium caninum transmitted by the flea that infect dogs and cats
Haemobartonellosis (M. haemocanis) transmitted by the flea that infect dogs and cats
Typhus caused by Rickettsia typhi transmitted by the flea that infect dogs, cats, rodents and other animals
Tularemia (rabbit fever) caused by Francisella tularensis, transmitted by the flea
Fleas Prevention - Preventing fleas is one of the most important steps in flea control. It is better to prevent these parasites than to wait for a problem to occur that needs treating - on humans, pet and in the home or yard. Most prevention techniques aren't too difficult to implement and include taking precautions and understanding these pests. If you know an area which is prevalent with fleas, do all you can to avoid it - likewise if you know that someone else's pet or home is infested, avoid it - and keep your pets away until the parasites are cleared. Fleas can sometimes get into the home even if you have no pets. There are many ways that they can enter the home and we go into more detail in our dedicated articles, but blocking entrances to wild animals that could bring tiny parasites near to the home is a good first step. Other quick preventions are to wear strong and recommended repellents, to keep all skin covered, regularly check your pets (thoroughly) before they re-enter the home and should you have them in clothing or fleas in bedding clean all laundry on a high temperature and put through the drier at a similar heat for good value. Finally - read through our information on natural remedies, as you could quite easily add supplements to meals (including your pets') such as garlic or sage to help emit unfavourable odors to certain parasites. To get a more detailed explanation of what a flea is and how it can affect you and your pets, please read through our articles and share us with your friends and local community.
What are Fleas
This website provides free information on flees and ticks. This section has many articles on common issues people experience with the flea!
Helpful tips, info and facts about fleas to enable you to prevent and control these tiny parasites
Take a look at our flee pictures and diagrams and learn all about fleas - where they come from, how they move, why they bite us and our pets and how we can kill them and avoid future infestations
Educate others on Parasites and share this site of free info!