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Information about fleas and how to treat an infestation



The two most common species are the cat and dog flea.

Adult fleas are 2 to 7 millimetres long and brownish in colour. Their bodies are compressed from one side to the other and they have large hind limbs for jumping.

All fleas live exclusively as parasites on warm blooded animals and although they have a preferred host, both the cat and dog flea can also be found on and feed from other animals and humans.

As well as being found on the host, fleas are often found in the host’s bedding. Cat fleas are by far the most common accounting for 75 per cent of all flea infestations. The flea population reaches its peak in September. Flea bites will be seen as a tiny dark red spot surrounded by a reddened area.


If you apply a treatment to yourself, ensure you read all the instructions on the packet before undertaking the treatment, which can take up to 14 days to work.

  • Ensure you clear as much floor space as you can.
  • Vacuum all areas including furniture.
  • After vacuuming, empty the vacuum cleaner into a refuse bag, secure it and dispose in a refuse bin.
  • Wash pets bedding in a hot wash
  • Store food stuffs
  • Cover fish tanks.
  • Remove pets from the area, only letting them back into the property once treatment has dried and been ventilated, which usually takes 3 hours.

You will also need to treat your pet for fleas with an approved product from your vet.

Last reviewed: May 10, 2023 by Paul

Next review due: November 10, 2023

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