How to Get Rid of Fleas in your Home

Fleas are one of the most common parasites that affect mammals and birds. The adult flea is a small wingless insect that is either black or dark brown. Their bodies are flattened from the sides, and their spines project backwards. This makes them able to maneuver through the tiniest of spaces including animal hair.

A flea’s bite results in an irritating itch. Additionally, the insects can transfer several organisms that can cause diseases to humans. For instance, flea-borne typhus and plaque causing organisms are transmitted to humans by bugs that feed on infected rodents. People can get fleas, too, if the pets around house have them.

closeup of a flea

In most cases, insect infestations are brought on by pets. The eggs, larvae, and pupae live in the garden and home environments, while the adult fleas are typically found in domestic animals.

Therefore, to adequately combat insect infestations, you must consider all these aspects of the insects. Herein is a comprehensive guide on how to get rid of fleas naturally & chemically.

Identifying if your Home is Infested with Fleas

Identifying an infestation is the first and most important step in combating fleas. If you have pets that spend a lot of time outdoors, start by investigating them for scratching or mild biting. If they scratch themselves continually, they may be infected with fleas.

You should also carefully examine the pets’ beddings for salt and pepper-like stains. These stains are often digested blood from the bugs or the insects’ eggs. On the pets, the insects will mostly be found under the fur at the base of the tail or around their necks.

Check thoroughly for pale flea scabs caused by bites from the insects. Insect dirt may also be present as small rust-colored or black bits of dandruff.

If the fleas are transferred to people, they may experience red inflamed and itchy welts on their skin, particularly in the mornings. It is important to check for tiny specks on all beddings and pieces of clothing. These are usually evidence of dead insects or eggs.

Know How Fleas Spread in your House

To get rid of fleas, you have to be informed on how these insects spread. The main places will be the warmer spots in your house as they are the preferred places to rest or sleep by your pets. They spread out mainly from this location.

infestation of fleas

Outdoors, the fleas will be located in large numbers in the doghouses, kennels, or other favorite rest areas such as the porch. Wild animals may also be a contributing factor to pest infestations in your home. Some mammals such as chipmunks, raccoons, wild rodents or opossums may be living in proximity to your house. Many times your pets will investigate these areas, and consequently, an insect infestation occurs.

The problem with fleas is that they may remain dormant for an extended period of time. They will often wait for just the right conditions to emerge; hot and humid weather are both ideal times. The flea larvae need moisture to survive, or else they will dehydrate and die. However, they cannot survive in stagnant water bodies.

The 3 Best Ways to Get Rid of Fleas in Your Home & on your Pets

1. Treating your Household Pets (Flea Removal)

Since pets are among the primary sources of fleas in your house, it is vital to treat them first. You can do this at home or take them to the veterinarian. The vet will prescribe a variety of pet formulations to prevent these insects from going near them.

At home, you should bathe the pets in a mild shampoo or detergent. Make sure that you do not use human shampoo as this can further irritate your pets’ skins. The bath water will drown the fleas, and the detergent will kill any surviving insects in the following hours.

dog with fleas

Alternatively, you can remove the fleas using a insect comb dipped in shampoo. This treatment is recommended for cats since they do not exactly sit well with baths. You should also ensure that you treat your pets with insect growth regulators (IGRs).

IGRs serve to prevent the development of immature bugs into the adult stage. If an adult flea feeds on blood that is treated, its offspring will be unable to develop properly. Common IGRs include Methoprene, Pyriproxyfen, Biolar, and Nylar. These are available either as animal sprays or spot-on.

In some instances, they are formulated with an adulticide such as Fipronil, Imidacloprid or Selamectin. The adulticide formulas are applied between the pets’ shoulder blades and on the tails. IGRs and adulticides are costlier than shampoo or detergent, but they are more efficient in getting rid of fleas.

The first thing that should be done is to use the Dawn® Dishwashing Liquid on your pets to bathe them properly and kill the fleas. We have chosen this product is because it's much cheaper than tick shampoos on the market but it works just as well. 

Siphotrol® Plus II Premise Spray can be used around your house but make sure that you, other people, or your pets are outside the house before using it.

When you use the food grade Diatomaceous Earth, make sure that you or your pets do not inhale the product. Only use enough amount and sprinkle it around the pillows or bed that you pet usually stays at. 

Once you have cleaned your pet and have put enough preventive measures around your house, it's time to protect your pets by putting on either Frontline Plus for Dogs/Cats or Advantage II for Dogs/Cats. Both are the top products in the world and you can't go wrong with either of them. Follow the instructions on the box to put them on your pet properly for the best results.

2. Vacuum the Bug-Infested Areas Immediately

Thoroughly vacuum all places in your house that have been affected by the flea infestation. This process includes the floors, furniture, upholstery, rugs, carpets and all surfaces your pets have been on. You must also vacuum all crevices, behind doors and around all the furniture.

vacuuming the insects

The vacuuming serves to remove the eggs and larvae, get rid of the fecal blood and organic materials, and streamline the carpet fibers to make insecticide application more useful. It also causes the adult fleas to come out of their cocoons. All vacuuming is done in preparation for the indoor treatment process.

If you really want to go the extra mile, there is nothing better than using the Shop-Vac 5-Gallon 4.5 Peak HP Stainless Steel Wet Dry Vacuum to suck up the little insects and make sure they never come back. This home appliance is not only built for chores and cleaning but it's built for pest prevention of tiny insects.​

The Pest Control, Sokos Humane Insects and Bug Catcher Vacuum is great for more humane treatment towards these bugs, so if you want to try it out click the button below.​

Another interesting strategy that could for work you are flea foggers, you can learn more about them below.

3. Indoor & Outdoor Insect Treatment

Application of insecticide to your indoor environment is only necessary if the flea infestation is causing dermatological problems to the human occupants. This is also done if the treatment of your pets fails to solve the pest problem, that is why using this technique is still the best way to kill fleas in your home.

Before beginning treatment, you should remove all items such as clothing and beddings from breeding spots. Also, remove food items and dishes from all the treatment areas. Treatment can be done with the help of extermination personnel or alone. If you choose to do it yourself, make sure other people and pets do not come into contact with the treated surfaces.

The treatment may take several hours depending on your preferred method of application and the ventilation. The house will not be safe for re-entry until all the treatment dries off. Remember to use more concentration of insecticide on problem areas including carpets, rugs and beneath furniture or beds.

Johnson & Johnson’s Raid® Concentrated Deep Reach Fogger get the most positive reviews online and we think so too. Although the Zodiac® FleaTrol™ Fogger is also known for doing the job by destroying the root cause of all the pest infestation in homes which are the eggs. People are raving about these two products. 

Outdoor treatment of fleas is often unnecessary in many cases. But if your pets spend most of their time outside, there are several key areas you should treat with powdered insecticides. These include the fences, kennel areas, dog houses, beneath decks and the house foundation. You should focus on the sectors that are not directly exposed to sunlight since sunlight dries out flea larvae and eggs.

Infested areas should be vacuumed at least twice a week. Additionally, you must undertake all these steps around the same time and on the same day. If the problem persists, it may be time to contact professional pest management firms.

The Verdict

So, it's definitely hard to get rid of fleas when you have a house that is full of cloths, rugs, pets and other places where it would be easy for these insects to latch on to and breed. For most people it can be an endless loop of cleaning their pets and their homes from fleas but hopefully with this post, you can get the help you need to not only get rid of these little bugs but to prevent them from breeding inside your home as well.

For more information about pest prevention and removal, contact us or go to our homepage at : to find more tips and tricks to get rid of pests that are finding a home in your property.