If you need to know how to get rid of fleas, you came to the right place. Fleas are a common problem for pets and the people who love them. When they bite, these tiny insects drink blood, cause pain, and may transmit disease or tapeworms. While flea bites are irritating to all, some people and pets are highly allergic and suffer more than others.

Flea control is essential regardless of where you live, but flea season varies by location. Whether you need seasonal flea control or year-round management, learn how to get rid of fleas as part of your family’s fundamental health care.

When Are Fleas Most Active?

Flea season is the time of greatest flea activity when their populations soar. This occurs during warm weather between 70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit and humid conditions. Like Goldilocks, fleas don’t like it too hot or too cold. They begin to die off at temps above 95 and below 46 degrees. In some parts of the country, fleas are most active from June to September. In mild winter climates, flea season extends from March through December, while southern Florida is pretty much a year-round party for the little bloodsuckers.

Knowing when flea season occurs in your climate helps to guide your efforts to get rid of fleas and make them more effective.However, as the intensity and duration of seasons change, expect the flea season to start earlier and end later than in yesteryear.

How Flea Season Impacts Your Control Strategy

flea life cycleDid you know that due to a flea’s complex life cycle, it can take up to three or four months to thoroughly rid your home of a flea infestation? Yikes! Waiting until you have an infestation before learning how to get rid of fleas is not a winning strategy against these biting pests.

So, when should you start the process of sending fleas packing? Determine the likely beginning of flea season in your area, then start your flea prevention program a month before. Just because you and your pet aren’t getting bitten yet doesn’t mean fleas aren’t present. They’re tiny (smaller than a sesame seed)! And while fleas can’t fly, they can jump long distances from one host to another.

Year-Round Flea Management — A Proactive Approach

Experts estimate that for every adult flea you can spot on your pet, there are at least 100 immature fleas nearby, which is why it’s important to take immediate steps. Getting rid of fleas is not a one-time process. Nor is it something you do just during flea season. It requires a year-round, multi-pronged approach to keep fleas out of your yard so you can keep them out of your home and off your pet.

Each step of flea management seeks to deny the fleas access to the food, water, or shelter they need to survive:

  • Consistent Landscape Maintenance: Mow your lawn regularly, raking up fallen leaves, twigs, and leaf litter.
  • Spread Cedar Chips: Spread cedar chips on bare soil and in spots where your pet rests. The smell repels fleas.
  • Keep Plants Neatly Trimmed: Cut back overgrown plants where wild animals bearing fleas like to hide.
  • Avoid Overwatering: Don’t overwater; repair any leaky faucets or irrigation fixtures. Fleas need wet soils, humidity, and water to survive.
  • Find Beneficial Nematodes: Some tiny worms hunt and feed on fleas. Check with your local nursery or big box store, and specify you want flea-eating nematodes.
  • Keep Trash Cans Covered: Human trash attracts flea-bearing wildlife to our yards, where our pets pick them up. Pick up pet food and keep the garbage covered.
  • Use Topical Flea Prevention Treatments: Apply a monthly topical flea treatment to protect your pet from being bitten. Don’t let the protection lapse.

However, it can be nearly impossible to avoid an occasional hitchhiker in your pet’s fur. So, learning how to get rid of fleas in the home is essential. These steps to get rid of fleas indoors should be repeated frequently during flea season to keep your home free from the nasty biters.

  • Thoroughly wash all bedding for pets and people using hot water and soap.
  • Thoroughly vacuum all carpets and upholstery. Steam cleaning is best for upholstery and curtains.
  • Sweep all hard flooring.
  • Comb all pets with a very fine-toothed flea comb. Dunk any fleas or eggs in hot, soapy water to kill them.After removing fleas with a comb, thoroughly bathe each pet using warm water and gentle, pet-friendly flea shampoo or soap.
  • If you have a stubborn infestation, get professional flea control services for the home’s exterior to prevent new flea infestations.

Seasonal Strategies to Outsmart Fleas

“How to get rid of fleas” is a year-long challenge that demands a seasonal playbook to stay one step ahead.

Spring: Early spring is the time for any major yard cleanup. Once the ground has thawed and the grass begins to grow, start mowing. Remove fallen branches and twigs, and eliminate any standing water, especially puddles. Clear out underbrush, and get your pet on a monthly treatment before you notice them scratching. Mid-spring is an ideal time for the first nematode treatment.

Summer: Summer requires maximum vigilance against fleas. Vacuum all rugs and carpets and launder all bedding frequently, particularly the pet’s bedding. Mow often and remove leaf litter and debris. Water management is essential, as fleas seek shady, damp spots to hide when not hitchhiking on your pet. Keep fallen fruit and veggies picked up and disposed of. They attract flea-bearing wildlife.

Fall: Continue all flea prevention strategies inside and out. As the weather cools, fleas want to come indoors to ride out the coming winter in the warmth of your home. Repair any damage to fences or walls where wild animals can enter your property. Store firewood off the ground to allow air to flow under it and keep animals and fleas from hiding in the damp, shaded soil.

Winter: If your winters are cold, you will enjoy a brief easing of yard and home maintenance measures to prevent fleas. However, increase your vigilance for wild animals. Cold weather, storms, and hunger will drive wildlife onto your property. Secure the garage and any outbuildings to prevent wildlife and their fleas from making their home on your property.

By the time you notice your pet has fleas, the flea has already bitten and injected your pet with salivary proteins and germs, and it has begun to lay eggs.

Can’t Conquer Fleas on Your Own? We Can Help!

Defending your home, garden, and pets against fleas is a big job. Mosquito Joe is your go-to solution anytime you need help to get rid of fleas. Our comprehensive pest control services also takes care of mosquitoes and ticks, helping you to establish a pest-free oasis for your pets and family. All our work is backed by the Neighborly Done Right Promise™ and our own Mosquito Joe Satisfaction Guarantee because your satisfaction means everything to us.

Why not scratch flea control off your to-do list and request a free quote today?