Fleas are resilient and difficult to kill. Fleas lay most of their eggs in carpets and rugs. You need to kill fleas in each stage of the life cycle to eradicate them in your home. Vacuuming, dusting carpet with diatomaceous earth, cleaning carpet with borate-based insecticide, and treating pets may all be necessary to rid your home of fleas. In severe infestations, it may be necessary to use flea bombs.
Things You'll Need
- Pet flea treatment
- Vacuum cleaner with disposable bags
- Diatomaceous earth
- Borate-based insecticide
- Flea bomb
Treat pets for fleas. There are many types of pet flea-control products on the market; consult your vet if you don't know which is best for your pet.
Vacuum carpets and rugs daily. Use a vacuum cleaner with strong suction and disposable bags. Dispose of the vacuum bag in an outside trash can after each cleaning.
Dust carpet with food-grade diatomaceous earth (DE). Diatomaceous earth is deadly to all stages of the flea life cycle, but food-grade DE is harmless to people and pets. Dust all cracks and crevices along floorboards thoroughly. While the effectiveness of the dust does not wear out, it will be sucked up when vacuuming, so you may need to reapply after vacuuming.
Machine wash rugs and pet bedding. If pet bedding can't be cleaned in the washing machine, dispose of it in the outside trash and replace it.
Use a borate-based insecticide on the carpet. Thoroughly dust the product over the carpet and leave it on the carpet as a treatment. The insecticide can also be mixed with water and used in a carpet shampooer to get the product deeper into the nap. Treat areas under beds and furniture. Only use carpet-cleaning borate insecticide. Wood-cleaning borate powders can be harmful to people and pets.
If you have tried everything else and fleas remain, the powerful insecticides in flea bombs may be necessary. Follow the manufacturer's instructions explicitly when using flea bombs, as they include extremely dangerous chemicals. Improper use can be deadly.
Tips & Warnings
- Try the least toxic treatments first to control your flea problem. If vacuuming, cleaning, and treating pets is ineffective, move on to insecticides. Allow at least a week for any treatment to kill all the flea cycles before using flea bombs.
- DE is available in most hardware and garden stores. It's also available in health food stores, as it is commonly used as a supplement for human consumption. Do not use DE that is used in swimming pool maintenance; this variety can be toxic.
- Consult a professional exterminator if you can't control the flea issue. Too much chemical treatment can be dangerous to pets and humans.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images