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What You Need To Know About Fleas In New Braunfels

August 20, 2022

Fleas are tiny, flightless, parasitic insects that feed on the blood of warm-blooded animals. These parasites have long plagued humanity with their incessant biting and large numbers. Flea bites are just part of the problem, as fleas are also vectors of many diseases.

Historically, fleas have been blamed for spreading the bubonic plague by biting infected rats and then biting humans. Today, fleas can still transmit the bubonic plague, which causes fever, weakness, and swollen lymph nodes. They can also transmit flea-borne typhus, which causes a rash, fever, and body aches. When it comes to our pets, fleas can also pass on illness in the form of parasitic worms. For these reasons, pest control in New Braunfels should be taken seriously.

How To Identify Different Types Of Fleas

There are over 2,000 species of fleas in the world. In the United States alone, the cat flea and the dog flea are two of the most common species. Despite their names, both types of flea frequently feed on humans. 

Both cat fleas and dog fleas in New Braunfels look and act similarly. They are dark brown to black, sometimes taking on a reddish hue after a blood meal. They are tiny and flat. Cat fleas spread more quickly than dog fleas, as they feed on a wide range of animals.

The Lifecycle Of The Common Flea

Regardless of the type of flea, the flea lifecycle is more or less the same. For fleas to mate successfully, they must have a blood meal. Then, once their hunger is satisfied, the female flea will mate with multiple male flea partners. Within a few days of mating, the female flea will lay up to 40 fertilized flea eggs at a time (each the size of one grain of sand!). Both the mating and the egg-laying process typically take place on the host! 

Within two weeks, the flea eggs hatch into flea larvae. The larvae are blind, photosensitive, and legless. The flea larvae spin cocoons around themselves; this stage is called the pupae stage. Once it is clear that a potential host is nearby, the adult flea will emerge from the cocoon. Fleas in the pupae stage can detect hosts by sensing rises in carbon dioxide and body heat. Adult fleas can live for several months, as long as they have a host to feed on.

Three Reasons Fleas Are So Hard To Get Rid Of

It can be challenging to get rid of fleas around your home, as each stage of their life requires a different approach for eradication. What kills an adult flea does not work on an egg and vice versa. In the larvae and pupae stage, fleas remain hidden and are hard to reach. Pupal fleas are protected by their cocoons and can lie dormant for months or years before emerging and causing problems for you and your pets. 

Fleas are also hitchhikers. Once you get rid of one brood of fleas, all it takes is for one guest or animal to bring in a new infestation. Since flea infestations can be complicated, it is best to work with a licensed veterinarian to keep your pets flea-free and work with a professional exterminator to protect your home. 

Control, Extermination & Prevention Of Fleas

As previously mentioned, it is always a good idea to work with a professional to manage infestations. An expert like Gold Star Exterminators can provide quality pest control in New Braunfels. Gold Star Exterminators is superior pest control you can trust. We have over two decades of experience serving New Braunfels properties. We are committed to excellence and guaranteeing a pest-free home. For a dedicated team of pest control experts, give Gold Star Exterminators a call today!