How Did My Dog Get Fleas?

Recently, I noticed my neighbor’s dog scratching and upon further inspection, I have served simply that on them.

  • So my neighbor’s biggest question was “how did my dog get fleas this is a question”. Has it become a flea magnet? This is a question I’ll be answering in this article.

But in brief, dogs can get fleas from other animals such as foxes, raccoons, and rodents, or from the house (from flea-infested blankets, rugs, and bedding), or even in outdoor spaces such as the neighbor’s yard, or flea-infested kennels.

Details: How Did My Dog Get Fleas?

My Dog Keeps Scratching Its Mouth: ...

1. Can Dogs Get Fleas From Other Animals? Wildlife? Hotspot #1

Yes, dogs can get fleas from other animals including wildlife, and household pets like cats.

Notably, cat fleas will not discriminate against their hosts and thus will bite even the dogs.

  • However, dog fleas only prefer to bite dogs and suck their blood.

Dogs are generally social by nature and this could make them a flea magnet.

  • When interacting with other animals (wild and domestic ones) dogs among other birds could come into contact with fleas.

Despite that fleas are not high jumpers, then hop onto your dog and begin their colony.

Many flea-infested animals will be a great danger to your dogs.

  • For example, house mice that are flea-infested may drop the fleas around the house or directly spread them to your dog.

Other wild or domestic animals that will carry fleas are;

  1. Bovine
  2. Foxes
  3. Raccoons
  4. Deer
  5. Rabbits
  6. Opossum
  7. Skunks
  8. Squirrels
  9. Ferrets
  10. Birds
  11. Rodents

So, dogs will pick fleas from different animals including pets and wildlife.

  • Wild animals will visit various open spaces such as your yard and dogs also like moving around such areas.

Also, in their daily work, dogs move through various areas including the backyard, and may come into contact with animals like raccoons, squirrels, rabbits, or birds.

Ways Of Preventing A Flea Infestation From Animals

First, you will require to reduce the level or frequency of contact between the flea-infested animals and your dogs.

Therefore, you must discourage the world animals from getting into your backyard.

Initial steps to achieve these may include are moving the dog’s seeds, nuts, and food from the yard.

  • Also, you can discourage raccoons and foxes from getting into your yard by keeping does garbage bags in sealed bins.

However, don’t discourage the dogs from socializing with other pets including other dogs as this could hinder their well-being.

So, you need to flea treat the dogs and all the other pets in the house as these will reduce the probability of flea infestation on dogs. 

2. Can Dogs Get Fleas From the House? Hotspot #2

Please can get into the house through various ways including hitchhiking onto humans or pets.

For example, wild animals like mice are raccoons can carry fleas from the outdoor spaces to your indoor areas.

Also, humans may also carry the fleas from other houses of the yard through shoes or clothing.

Other ways that the fleas will get into your house include flea-infested toys, blankets, rugs, and pet bedding.

  • So take precaution when receiving off buying second-hand household items – ensure to flea treat such items with ways that will kill even the flea eggs.

3. Can Dogs Get Fleas From Dog Facilities? Hotspot #3

Despite that it’s not common, dogs may also pick fleas from different dogs (including wild dogs) in their environment.

For example, your dog may pick fleas from the dog park as it will come into contact with many animals; some of which may already have fleas.

Also, the dog park grounds could be covered with fleas that will be searching for the dogs as their host.

  • I note that there isn’t much that we can do to control the fleas on the dog park grounds.

But you can take preventative measures by administering some appropriate dog flea treatment.

Indoor dog facilities must also be flea-treated before allowing your dog to visit such areas.

So, take precautions; as regards the application of flea control techniques, as you choose the dog’s daycare, pet boarding, or groomer.

  • A proactive step that I can take is to enquire about flea outbreaks in the facility and the steps they took to manage them and also how they prevented exposure to other pets including dogs.
  • Groomers’ facilities can also be a hotspot for fleas to jump onto your dog but extra caution must be taken as regards the groomer’s gear as they could already be infected.

So, as noted earlier, ensure that the groom has laid down procedures for flea control and appropriate washing of the dogs.

4. Can Dogs Get Fleas From Outdoor Spaces? Hotspot #4

Fleas love the humid and warm climate that is mainly outdoors; which allows them to survive for long in such areas.

You will find flea eggs in shady and cool locations of your outdoor spaces.

Therefore, the dogs can get a flea infestation if they frequent such places in your yard.

So, which outdoor areas can my dog get in contact with fleas?

  1. Neighboring yards
  2. Under porches
  3. Dog houses
  4. Kennels
  5. Backyard
  6. Dog park or run

The please that you find in your backyard could have come from the neighbor’s yards or via wildlife.

It will be easy to inspect and control fleas in the yard but this may not be possible at the dog run or dog park that is flea-infested.

So, you may need to ask around if other pet owners have experienced fleas on their dogs after visiting the run or park.

  • This information on a possible flea infestation will help you know where and when to take your dog outdoors without major risk of such bug attacks.

It’s not a wonder that dogs could also pick fleas from your own backyard.

The fleas might have been dropped by wild animals (rabbits, deer, or squirrels) and they’ll sit in the grass waiting for a suitable host for food and breeding purposes.

  • So, the fleas might jump onto your dog. The most you can do is to flea-treat the yard and also administer flea medication to the dogs; either oral or topical.

How To Control Fleas On Your Dog

It doesn’t matter whether you are dog is well protected or super clean, they may always catch fleas.

  • Therefore, from the onset, I would suggest that you put your dog on some flea prevention remedies like AdvantageMulti and Comfortis.

Step 1: Early Detection

Detecting fleas in their early stages will help you prevent the occurrence of a full-blown flea attack within weeks.

Therefore, It’s important to promote early detection of fleas by checking unique signs on the pet (dog) and in the house.

  • Some of the most common signs of a flea infestation on your dog will include excessive scratching and nibbling.
  • Also, the occurrence of red patches and sudden loss of hair on the dog’s skin may indicate an infestation.

So, if you notice these signs of fleas, I recommend you undertake an extensive investigation by keenly combing through the dog’s fur.

  • In addition, examine if you see small black dirt (which is flea’s body waste).
  • Also, you can set down the dog on some white towel and then continue brushing its fur downwards

Therefore, it will now be easy to notice the flea dirt and the adult fleas when you have the white towel background.

Step 2: Flea-Treat the Pet (Dog)

Shop for a pesticide that will exterminate the adult fleas and the flea larvae.

For the dogs (and other pets) plus the house to become flea-free, you’ll need to effectively kill all the flea larvae.

  • Therefore, when purchasing that pesticide, casual that it includes larvae-killing ingredients such as methoprene and pyriproxyfen.

Bathe the cats and dogs in four to five days prior or after flea- or tick-treating to them with spot-on remedies like Advantage II or K9 Advantix II.

Notably, the chemicals in these spot-on flea treatments will move into the pet’s subcutaneous fat layer to exterminate flea eggs and adult fleas.

  • Bathing the dogs too fast before applying the spot-on treatment will wash off the natural oils which help carry the bug-killing chemicals.

In addition, bathing the dogs shortly after the flea treatment will wash off the chemicals.

But if you used oral treatments for the dogs like bravecto you don’t have to worry about bathing them too soon.

I recommend the immediate application of the flea killers if you notice adult fleas in the vicinity.

  • For example, Capstar flea killer will exterminate the fleas on your dog in 6 hours.

Luckily some of the flea killers like sentinel will also exterminate other pests like heartworms.

  • However, as regards the use of shampoos to kill fleas – avoid over-using them as they may overdry the dog’s skin.

Step 3: Flea-Treat the House or Home

Next, I recommend that you vacuum the house using a vacuum cleaner and make sure to get to those hard surfaces.

  • After vacuuming the surfaces remember to seal that vacuum bag in some plastic container and dispose of it.

They are homeowners that will tell you to put a flea collar into that vacuum bag to help kill the flea eggs and the adult fleas as you are vacuuming.

  • However, some experts discourage the use of flea collars in vacuum cleaners since these devices have many chemicals.

Prior to beginning the vacuuming process, sprinkle some borax on the carpets that could be flea-infested – and leave it overnight.

  • Vacuum the various services on the next day and use hot water to wash the best bed but you can also or to dry the fabrics.

But if the fleas continue attacking and appearing in your spaces, consider contracting a professional exterminator since they will use powerful but safe chemicals.

  • If you’ll be doing the flea extermination as a DIY Project remember some of the chemicals that you might use may be hazardous to your kids, fish, and birds. 

Related: Diatomaceous Earth

Conclusion

So in summary please can jump onto your dog through various ways including coming from the yard, wild animals, carpets and rugs, or even other pets such as cats.

  • Monthly treatment of dogs for fleas is highly recommended and you may use devices such as flea collars when the pet is outdoors.

In addition, you can use free shampoos to bathe your dogs.

  • You can still bathe the dogs with castile soap (unscented) but you should add some essential oils (just a few drops) such as citronella, tea tree, lavender, or eucalyptus

Cheers!

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