A warning has been issued to homeowners across Ireland following a rise in residential flea inquiries in the last three months.
The warning was issued by Rentokil, a pest control company, who say there's been a 77% increase in calls about flea infestations in May, June and July 2018, compared to the same period last year.
- Dublin: 39%
- Cork: 18%
- Wexford: 13%
- Wicklow: 10%
- Kildare: 8%
- *Other Counties: 12%
Fleas tend to live outdoors but attach themselves to animals and humans.
They live by consuming the blood of their hosts.
Fleas have also been known to transmit tapeworm and, in very rare cases, even transmit serious diseases.
Rentokil have issued a series of tips for avoiding and treating fleas.
- Regularly wash and check pets for fleas with a flea comb to catch a potential problem early and prevent fleas from becoming established in carpets and bedding
- Wash pet bedding weekly, ideally at temperatures above 50 degrees to kill any dormant fleas and eggs
- Vacuum floors and furniture regularly – ensuring to cover hard to reach places as fleas like to hide in cracks in floorboards and crevices
- Shake out or beat rugs and pet bedding outdoors so fleas and eggs fall off
- Consider placing pet beds in areas without carpets such as on wooden floors (but ONLY if these are well sealed – if there are gaps between the boards this may actually make the pest much harder to treat)
- If moving into a new home inspect carpets and flooring carefully for signs of eggs or ‘flea dirt’. If the previous owners had pets the flea larvae might be waiting for you.