Fleeing from Fleas
Manage fleas without pesticides
Fleas are reddish brown to black, wingless external parasites that are generally found on the skin of cats, dogs and other animals. Although fleas prefer domesticated animals, when supply is short, fleas will bite humans or other animals.
What are symptoms of fleas?
- Some cat fleas are suspected of transmitting murine typhus to humans; however, primarily the bites are the major nuisance.
- Bites itch and appear as a central red spot surrounded by a red halo.
- Some may have an allergic reaction to the bite.
How to manage fleas without using pesticides*
- Thoroughly clean pet beds and resting areas both indoors and outdoors in hot soapy water
- Thoroughly and regularly vacuum floors, rugs, carpets, upholstered furniture, and crevices around corners to remove flea eggs and larvae
- Place vacuum bags in a sealed bag and throw out since flea eggs and larvae can survive inside the bags
- Use a special comb to remove fleas from your pet and comb on regular intervals to reduce occurrence of fleas
- Spray your pet daily with a 50/50 mixture of white vinegar and water
- Use an enzyme shampoo on your pet
- Mix brewer’s yeast, or vitamin B or garlic tablets in with pet food.
- Rub animal’s coat with fennel, rue, and rosemary
- Place eucalyptus seeds and leaves where the animal sleeps
- As a last resort and after consulting with a veterinarian, use topical liquid spot treatment
Get More Information:
Contact the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (firstname.lastname@example.org) for updated information and evidence-based resources.