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How do we get rid of fleas once and for all?

26 replies

bishboschone · 04/01/2014 18:32

We live in a modern house which I Hoover daily but I have three cats . 2 are 14 and we have never had a flea problem , we also have a three year old long hair and no have a flea problem. She doesn't seem to have any on her ( I flea comb them daily ) but sleeps withy dd and she gets bitten . I have used the stuff the vets sold me but it isn't working . Any bright ideas . We are moving to a posh new house in August and I don't want bloody fleas in it and don't want to leave a flea infested house either !

OP posts:
unlucky83 · 04/01/2014 19:16

Sorry - I know it is grim...and I can't really be much help ...but first are you sure it is fleas? (We got a plant that was infested with biting midges - took me a while to realise and things like bed bugs are on the rise apparently) ...anyway ....
What kind of flea comb are you using? Do you see any flea dirt on her?
IME the flea combs that look like plastic nit combs are worse than useless especially with long haired need the long teethed metal ones.
Keep regularly hoovering and daily flea combing (drop live fleas into boiling soapy water)...I find fleas jump out of the way of the comb but if you do it for long enough (20 mins or so) they seem to get tired and you catch more...also my cat hates having its tummy done...I try and just rub her tummy (fleas will get out the way, then do her back) and if I miss one one day I'll get it the next...Also concentrate on areas the cats sleep etc but also where they walk/jump - flea eggs drop off them - things like cat flaps and door mats need to be hoovered/cleaned often and solid floors are just as bad as carpets...
You will probably be getting bitten too ...just your DD reacts to the bites..
I find it is a bit of a losing battle..and it will take time ...fleas can be dormant in pupae for years waiting to 'hatch'.
My problem started after frontline drops just stopped working (after being successful for a couple of years) and it took me a while to realise she was infested ...combed 30 fleas off her in one go Sad. Kept trying it for a month or so (got vet to apply it etc) but then went back to a flea collar and regular combing ...she still isn't flea free - but we have hedgehogs etc so she picks them up outside.
I have found fleas in places you wouldn't expect - like I had a plastic box of plastic/wood baby toys under a window for months Blush waiting to sort them out ...when I went to sort them out must have stimulated them to 'hatch' I saw about 15 jumping around in there !
Washing my carpets seems to help - but steaming seemed to stimulate them to hatch - which is actually probably a good thing... and hoovering is supposed to catch something like 94% or adult fleas...

Lonecatwithkitten · 04/01/2014 19:37

I would suggest hovering, spraying the house with Acclaim or Indorex, washing all bedding at at least 40 and treating the cat with Advocate or Activyl all on the same day.
If your daughter is still then getting bitten I would be throng lay suspicious of another bug not fleas. Where on her body is she being bitten?

bishboschone · 04/01/2014 20:21

We have a carpet cleaner so also clean carpets regularly with a animal cleaner , edges too.. It's def fleas , where they sleep there is flea dirt and I have found them on them . I have a long toothed / handled comb which is much better than the stumpy one. Which product from the vets is best ? And why don't they make / sell something that works ! Argh

OP posts:
Lonecatwithkitten · 04/01/2014 20:27

I have recommended two spot ons and two household sprays. Any blood sucking insect will leave black dirts. Though with fleas they are found in the pets coat.

sunbathe · 04/01/2014 20:29

I spray the carpets, lasts a year. And I do the cat with a spot on thingy. Used to be frontline but now I use something else. I'll just check..

bishboschone · 04/01/2014 20:34

I'll get some more spray and some more stuff to put on the cats ..bloody things.. Def fleas though as I comb them through and wipe them in a tissue near the loo where they go down ( I actually hate killing things but they can't stay can they )

OP posts:
bishboschone · 04/01/2014 20:37

Do flea collars do anything?

OP posts:
aciddrops · 04/01/2014 20:39

What are you treating the cats with? I use Frontline drops or Effipro which are both good. Just one drop on the skin on the back of the neck. It has always worked and I've never had a persistent problem. You could call in Environmental Health to have the house fumigated.

aciddrops · 04/01/2014 20:39

Flea collars stink

oadcb · 04/01/2014 20:40

Stronghold and indorax spray. Spray is cheaper online than vets. Need to be through though.

sunbathe · 04/01/2014 21:01

I use Advantage spot on. Coupled with RIP carpet spray, job's a good'un.

BikeRunSki · 04/01/2014 21:04

Get a man in.seriously, after we wasted about £50 on DIY treatments, we got a local pest control man in who did the whole house (3 bed semi) for £65 and obliterated the blighters.

LamaDrama · 04/01/2014 21:08

How often are they wormed OP?

I use a spot on wormer so I know cat has the full dose every 10 weeks.

Advocate every 4 weeks & metal flea comb used daily.

Furminator cat deshedder used once a week.

Hoover cat bed daily & wash it weekly. Tumble dry to kill anything.

I had my house sprayed by pest control (£50) in the summer as it was so bad. But have seen nothing since, thankfully.

LamaDrama · 04/01/2014 21:10

Spot on wormer prescribed by vet , i should have said.

bishboschone · 04/01/2014 21:14

Is the stuff that's sprayed toxic? I use stuff from vets , can't Remember the name , maybe advocate .

OP posts:
unlucky83 · 04/01/2014 21:21

The vet gave me a leaflet about a (new prescription) flea collar in November ...can't remember the name but your vet might know...I was alternating between two different chemicals (pemthrin and diazinon) but actually her collar is well out of date and I am really trying just hoovering and regular combing and it seems to be working as well as anything...
I personally won't trust the spot ons anymore ..with her (over the counter) flea collar I very very rarely found any signs of fleas on her...I know she picks them up outside (in summer)... I only went onto Frontline after I found out the flea collar contained the same chemical as woodworm treatment and I had to give her a bath after she managed to get into an area treated with that. I used Frontline religiously, never missed an application, I didn't change the way I applied it I think the fleas became/were immune? but have been told that is impossible Hmm? Maybe it didn't absorb properly etc for some reason - but then again I'm very Hmm about the need to spray your house as well ...the one I had supposedly stopped the flea life cycle -so why the need to spray? Surely any resident fleas in the environment get onto the pet and then are killed/rendered infertile by the frontline (I didn't spray when i first started using it because had a baby at the time and wasn't happy to fill the air with chemicals - but we had no sign of fleas for a year/18 mths before she was infested - I still gave her monthly flea combs for the first year or so - no flea dirt etc... if I hadn't felt complacent it would never have got as bad ...
Also I don't think spraying would have got eg the ones in the plastic storage box...

unlucky83 · 04/01/2014 21:31

Wow - two cases of having the whole house treated working!!! - am going to seriously consider that now... do sometimes think I'm wining then find a couple on her again (usually small immature ones) thought being winter and cold etc outside problem would be solved now ...but she surely must be picking them up inside at this time of year... Sad

LamaDrama · 04/01/2014 21:40

Once the house was treated I found about 12 huge adult fleas ( they are red & a flat shape, about half the size of my little finger nail) dead on the floor. Really horrible to look at.

Now i just do the daily hoovering, combing, washing as a precaution along with vet meds.

monopoly123 · 05/01/2014 09:23

We had the flea man in, he charged a flat rate for the whole house and said if we saw fleas within 4wks he would come back for free (we didn't need him to). We contacted him via the council and I think it was around £50 (but that could have been the wasp man!).
We were using effipro which has the same active as frontline but it didn't seem to work (we were religiously doing it every 6wks), DH got frontline and we've been doing them every 5wks and touch wood I think we're ok. We've got the annual vet visit this month so I'm goi g to ask about an alternative so I can alternate them.

lookatmybutt · 05/01/2014 12:01

What spot treatment do you have? I know one year all my local fleas built up a tolerance to Frontline (the vet said numerous people had been affected), but Advocate cleared it up.

For the hoovering, I'd say mostly concentrate on the places where kitty settles otherwise you'll feel like sisyphus chasing them around the house. Last time I had an infestion I hoovered 6 times in 2 days concentrating on bed areas + Advocate and it did the job.

I never thought about calling a pest control company, but that also sounds like a good idea.

I wouldn't try collars - one of mine was allergic to his and ended up with a bald neck, also collars can be dangerous anyway.

pettyprudence · 05/01/2014 12:15

frontline stopped bworking for us too Hmm so we have switched to advantage. I am nit the best at treating the cats regularly but it feels like a losing battle at tge moment as we have moved next door to a house with 6 very unkempt cats who keep coming in my house, eating cat and human food and spraying the bloody place. saving up for a new back door and cat flap but not sure I will have them in time for dc2s arrival Sad

pettyprudence · 05/01/2014 12:22

apologies for terrible typing - stoopid phone Grin

unlucky83 · 05/01/2014 15:11

look and petty that's really interesting as I was told by vet that couldn't happen - the resistance thing Hmm
In fact receptionist/assistant told me the fleas I got with the flea comb would have been dying (all 30 of them? - then 20+ the next day) - and you'd never catch a healthy flea with a flea comb Hmm Funnily enough with no flea treatment at all I can get fleas with the flea comb - wondering what is making them die then?
(Apart from this our vets are and have been brilliant though)

shushpenfold · 05/01/2014 15:14

Second the flea collar….can't remember the name of it but comes in a tin, lasts for 8 months and stops fleas and ticks. Frontline categorically did not work on one of my cats as she kept getting them back and also ear mites (and we sprayed the house etc etc) The collar has stopped the problem instantly.

Dinnaeknowshitfromclay · 05/01/2014 15:32

When you use Indorex or the like it works ten times better is you leave it down as long as you can bear without vacuuming it back up. Leave it down a few days at least to get the full benefit.

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