How To Get Rid Of Fleas On Cats
To get rid of fleas on cats, you will need to bathe them in a flea shampoo and use a flea comb to remove the fleas. You may also need to use a flea spray to kill the fleas.
Fleas are more likely to cause anemic pets than ticks. Fleas, in addition to being hosts to intestinal parasites, can also be incubators for these parasites. The most common type of cat flea is the cat flea . With the development of flea and tick preventative products, infestations have become much rarer. According to Dr. de Jong, when fleas are wet, they turn red. Cats can get irritated by a variety of skin parasites, including Cheyletiella. A veterinarian can give you products to kill fleas on an animal within 24 hours.
In addition to giving your cat a flea bath, you can also give him flea shampoo. If you have fleas in your home, you should take precautions similar to those you would take if you had lice or bed bugs. You can also consult a professional exterminator if you want to use an insecticide that is specifically designed for this application. Fleas can only be kept alive if they persist.
How To Check Cats For Fleas
This article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. She graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1987 with a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years.There are 14 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 95% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 366,118 times.
Before you go on a flea hunt, think about why you suspect your cat might have fleas. If you’ve seen fleas on your cat or in your house, you know for sure you are dealing with fleas and should use a veterinary flea treatment labeled for cats. But, you may have a flea problem even if you’ve never seen a flea on your pet or in your home. Your cat may have cleaned the adult fleas from her fur. Flea eggs may have fallen off your pet and could hatch a few weeks later. Either way, it’s important to know for certain if your cat has fleas.
Using Flea Treatments Responsibly
NEVER use a flea product on a cat that has been formulated for use on a dog some of these contain permethrin, or related compounds, that can kill cats. Care should be taken to ensure that cats never have contact with these products, including contact with a recently treated dog as even this can lead to sufficient exposure to cause toxicity and death in cats
Some household pesticides such as wood treatments, ant and other insect killers may contain similar active ingredients to those used in flea treatments. To prevent additive effects, care must be taken to limit exposure to these.
Always read the small print carefully. Keep package inserts as they usually contain more detailed information than the outer packaging concerning any possible toxic hazards. If your pet does become ill after application of a product, always take the package insert with you to the vets. If in doubt, ask your vet.
You May Like: Should Cats Eat Wet Or Dry Food
Can You Easily See Fleas That Try To Hide On Humans
Just to be clear, humans are not the fleas first choice when looking for a tasty meal. Nevertheless, the not so fussy flea will bite humans if the opportunity arises, and you can be the target if it has not found a preferred host .
Fortunately, because we dont have a thick mat of hair coating us, it can be pretty easy to see a tiny dark creature jumping on us. Unfortunately, by the time we catch sight of one, we probably have not got away without been bitten. If you have a bite mark and you are not sure if it was a flea, here are a few things for you to check:
How to get rid of them? This part is easy, just take a warm shower or bath and the soap you use will kill the fleas instantly. However, the only way you are going to stop those little vampires from getting to you in the future is by targeting your environment, namely your home, garden and pets. I recommend that you take a look at my other flea guides as these will help you with this task.
Can Cat Flea Bite Transmit Diseases To Humans And Children
Which disease can result from the bite of an infected cat fleas bites? Fleaborne typhus disease is caused by Rickettsia typhi bacteria and can spread to people with contact with infected cat fleas. If an infected flea is accidentally swallowed by parasites such as tapeworms, it will apply to humans, children, pets, and animals. Kids and children are at risk because they often play close to the floor, are carpeted, and have pets where they can quickly get cat fleas. Fleas can get infected if they bite infected cats, opossums, dogs, or rats.
In the United States, some cat fleas carry pathogens that can lead to human fleaborne diseases. It is categorized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as stated below.
Recommended Reading: Kidney Failure In Cats Final Stages
Introduction To Cat Fleas
The most common type of flea found on cats is the cat flea , but rabbit and hedgehog fleas can also show an interest in your cat! Flea bites are itchy for all cats, and can lead to some developing allergies . As if fleas werent pesky enough, they can also provide a thriving environment for certain types of tapeworm, and heavy infestations can cause anaemia in kittens.
However theres no need to worry, as there are a number of different cat flea prevention options for you to look at.
Where Has My Cat Got Fleas From
Fleas thrive in warm and humid environments which means that they reproduce and flourish in our Summer months. However, they are also very happy in our lovely warm heated houses during the colder months too! This means that your cat can pick up fleas all year round. Cat fleas are one of the most common flea species to be found on lots of different animals which means that its not just other cats coming into your garden that can spread them around. Your pet does not need to come into direct contact with another pet that has fleas for them to catch them. In fact totally indoor cats can have flea problems as well due to the distances that fleas can jump!
Unfortunately it only takes one or two fleas on your pet for a problem to develop. The female flea can lay up to 2000 eggs in the first 24 hours after their first bite of your cat. These eggs are laid in the environment Which means that one flea can very quickly become a big problem. The eggs that are laid are very resilient as well and can lay dormant for several months, only hatching when they can detect the time is right.
How can I tell if my pet has fleas?
Cats are very good at grooming themselves, which can make it very difficult to see live fleas on your cat. The most common signs of a flea infestation on your pet are:
Bald patches or areas where the hair looks short and broken
Scabs and sore areas
Does it matter if my cat has fleas?
What can I do to prevent or treat fleas?
Also Check: Getting A Cat When Allergic
Physical Symptoms Of Fleas
If your cat has fleas, the chances are that you will notice either flea dirt or live fleas moving through your cat’s hair coat close to the skin.
In the case of a severe flea infestation, you may see the fleas themselves jump on and off your cat and burrow themselves in your carpet, furniture, or bedding. Fleas look like small, brown insects roughly the size of a fruit fly. They move quickly and can jump very far at high rates of speed. The blood meal that fleas take from your cat ends up as dark debris in your cat’s fur called “flea dirt”. This dark debris will streak red when moistened on a white tissue or paper towel.
In more mild cases, fleas are harder to spot and if you suspect that your cat has fleas, you may have to be diligent about looking for them in their fur. Fleas generally hide in the warmest parts of your cats body, so look carefully at your cats armpits and groin area.
Lastly, you may notice redness and skin irritation if your cat has fleas, especially in the areas where fleas hide most often. The skin may be bumpy and you may also notice hair loss in certain areas due to an increase in scratching.
Treating Your Household For Fleas
If your cat becomes infested with fleas, it is likely that you will also need to treat any other furry members of your family, as well as your upholstery, furniture, and living spaces.
Fleas are notorious for their prolific breeding, therefore, if you suspect an infestation, you need to act quickly and speak with your veterinarian as soon as possible.
To eradicate fleas and stop the spread of infestation in your home, you should:
- Clean and vacuum all of the bedding, upholstery, hardwood floors, carpets, rugs, and even the bottom of any furniture
- Use a spray or powder, if necessary
- Give your cats bedding a deep clean as well
- In the events of extreme infestation, a professional flea exterminator can help
As always, before using any cleaning products or chemical treatments, be sure to review the ingredients list as some could be toxic to pets.
Don’t Miss: Cat Peeing All Over House
How To Remove Flea Dirt From Your Pets Fu
If you have trouble removing dirt fleas from your pets fur, you can use a flea comb. Combs, with sharp teeth, are effective at trapping fleas as they brush through the pets fur, but they do not damage the delicate fur. In addition to removing flea dirt, it will remove dirt that is present on your pets skin.
How To Tell If My Cat Has Fleas
There are several signs of infestation of fleas on your cat. Therefore, all you have to do is be a little more vigilant towards your little fellows behavioral activities. Unfortunately, fleas tend to make your cats life miserable, affecting its mood and other aspects of mental health. Besides, your cat that has caught fleas will not do very great physically as well.
Lets have a light on signs of fleas infestation in your cat
You May Like: How To Know If Cat Has Worms
Symptoms & Signs Of Fleas In Cats
The most obvious symptom of fleas in cats is scratching and itching more than usual. If you notice your cat suddenly scratching much more, as if theyre in pain or highly irritated, try using a flea comb to look for signs of fleas.
Adult fleas are visible to the naked eye, but theyre fast and can easily hide in your cats fur. They are usually brown or reddish brown in color and have six legs.
Because fleas are so small and quick, you may be able to spot what is known as flea dirt more easily. Flea dirt is the feces of fleas. It may look like tiny grains of pepper or flecks of dirt.
You can find it fairly easily on cats with light colored fur, but it may be more difficult to spot against dark fur. To confirm that its flea dirt and not ordinary dirt, you can run a comb through your cats coat, which should pull some of the dirt off and possibly some adult fleas, as well.
Place the residue on a wet paper towel. Flea dirt will appear to have a rust color as it dissolves because it contains traces of blood, while regular dirt will be black or dark brown.
Flea bites appear, like other insect bites, as small, red lesions. The most common places that flea bites appear are on the groin, hind legs, and the back between the ribs and the tail.
Beyond the irritation that comes from being bitten by fleas, if the infestation is left untreated, some other conditions might also arise. Common secondary conditions caused by fleas include:
- Mycoplasma Haemofelis
How Long Do Fleas Live
Fleas will generally live for 2 or 3 weeks before being groomed out by the cat or their helpful human friend! Adult fleas are unable to survive off an animal, but its a different story when it comes to eggs and larvae. Each female can lay up to 2000 eggs during the course of their life. While these tend to hatch into larvae within a few weeks, they can lie dormant for a few months, particularly in carpets and under furniture. The larvae can also survive for months before becoming an adult. They can even survive during winter months, thanks to central heating.
Also Check: How Is Senior Cat Food Different
Can Humans Get Fleas From Cats
Humans cant host fleas like cats can, but once an unprotected cat has brought fleas into the home and an infestation has begun, fleas can certainly bite humans!
Flea bites appear as small red dots, usually around the ankles. Theyll be mercilessly itchy too. Humans can be at risk of Bartonellosis if theyre repeatedly bitten by fleas, so make no mistake – protecting your cat against fleas is good for your health as well as theirs.
When To See A Doctor About Flea Bites
If a flea bite becomes worse over time, infected, you have symptoms of bubonic plague or typhus, or if you feel unwell or have an allergic reaction you should see a doctor. Signs of infection include:
- swelling, redness and increasing pain around the bite
- pus forming in and around the bite
- a high temperature of 38C degrees or above
- feeling generally unwell
Also Check: Cat Bloody Stool But Acting Normal
Recommended Reading: How To Keep Your Cats Healthy
The Complete Guide To Cat Fleas: The Who What And How
Being a cat parent requires a lot of patience and practice. Cats are uniquely independent and tend to take care of themselves. But all that independence can lead to trouble if fleas find their way to your cat.
While your furry friend might not need your help most days, if they run into these parasites youll need to intervene.
Learn all about what cat fleas are, how they develop, and why cats get them in the first place.
Your Cat Begins To Groom Excessively
One of the first signs that your cat has fleas is a change in grooming habits. You may notice that grooming becomes more like an extreme sport than a relaxing pastime for your cat. Your cat, a master when it comes to self-care, is no match for a team of fleas.
Excessive grooming, along with licking, chewing scratching or biting, often leads to an increase in hair loss and sometimes bald spots on the back of your cats legs, neck or tail base. So if you detect even the slightest change in your cats meticulous behavior, take a closer look at its skin to see if you can discover evidence of any fleas.
Read Also: Kittens For Sale Santa Barbara
How Do You Tell If Your Cat Has Fleas
If you think your cat may have fleas, there are a few things you can look for. Check your cats fur for small, dark brown bugs. These are fleas. You may also see flea dirt, which looks like small black specks. These are the fleas feces. If you part your cats fur, you may be able to see small white eggs. If you see any of these things, your cat has fleas.
Fleas, in addition to affecting pets, people, and homes, can also be dangerous to pets. As a cat owner, you are naturally concerned about your cat getting fleas. Its important not to be concerned. This is a detailed explanation of how fleas can affect cats, the signs to look out for, and the treatments to follow. Flea feces are urine that contains undigested blood, and flea dirt contains flea feces as well. Flea feces can be seen on pets if they have been properly treated. If your cat has a very severe flea infestation, you may notice some pale gums.
How Do I Know If My Cat Has Fleas
If you notice your cat scratching, chewing, or biting at their skin particularly near the base of the tail fleas are a likely culprit. This scratching can lead to open wounds that are susceptible to infection.
Other signs to look for are:
- Visible fleas or flea dirt
- Excessive grooming
- Patches of hair loss, particularly around the tail and neck
- Inactivity or fatigue
You May Like: Best No Tracking Cat Litter
How To Get Rid Of Fleas On Your Cat
Fleas are one of the most common parasites encountered by cats and can be difficult to control. Adult fleas can be found on the cats back, neck, and underside, and they lay eggs, larvae, and pupae. To remove fleas, comb your cats fur with a fine-toothed metal flea comb from head to tail several times per day, then dip the comb in a mixture of warm, hot water and liquid dish detergent to kill the fleas. Fleas can be found on the cats fur and, in some cases, on carpets, furniture, and on the owners clothing and body.