If your dog has fleas, you want to get rid of them as quickly as possible. Not only are they uncomfortable for your dog, but they can also transmit diseases. And, for people with more than one pet, such as registered breeders taking care of puppies, fleas can quickly spread throughout your home.
There are many ways to get rid of fleas. Some people choose to use chemical treatments, while others prefer more natural methods. Whichever route you choose, it is important to be consistent in your approach and to treat both the dog and the place where they’ll spend the most time – typically their bed.
To get rid of fleas on a dog and on a dog bed, you’ll need to take some proactive steps.
How to Get Rid of Fleas in Your Home
- Flea comb
The first step is to manually remove any fleas, flea eggs, and flea dirt from your dog’s coat using a flea comb. There are a number of options for flea combs – you can even buy electric flea combs that kill the fleas as soon as they’re picked up by the comb. You should only use a flea comb when your dog’s coat is dry, as it can be difficult to run the comb through their fur when it’s wet.
Before you begin, brush out any mats or tangles in your dog’s coat so that the flea comb can pass through easily. Remember to do this step only in an area where you can easily vacuum and get rid of any fleas that fall off your dog.
- Hot bath and spot treatment
The next step is a good bath. When bathing your dog, use a mild shampoo made specifically for dogs and make sure to rinse all the suds out thoroughly.
After the bath, dry your dog off completely with a towel. You can then apply treatments that will kill the fleas on your dog, but you have many options for the type of treatment. We’ll talk about that further along in this article.
- House cleaning
Next, vacuum your entire house, paying special attention to any areas where your dog spends time. Studies have found that vacuuming kills 96% of adult fleas from carpets and 100% of the flea pupae and larvae, so it’s a surprisingly effective method of flea removal. Just be sure to empty the vacuum bag after each use so that the fleas don’t just end up back in your home.
- Washing and Flea Prevention
Wash all your dog’s bed in hot water and dry it on the hottest setting possible. Dog beds with washable covers are generally a good idea, since you can take off the cover and wash that separately from the filling.
You should also treat any areas where your dog sleeps or spends time with an insecticide designed to kill fleas. Be sure to follow the package directions carefully when using any pesticide products.
Make sure to keep up with regular vacuuming and washing of bedding and other areas where your dog spends time. This will help prevent future infestations of fleas.
Commercial and Natural Methods for Getting Rid of Fleas
An easy and effective method for getting rid of fleas on a dog is to use an over-the-counter spot treatment that is applied directly to the dog’s skin. These treatments usually contain insecticides that will kill the fleas on contact. There are many different brands available, so be sure to read the labels carefully and follow the directions exactly. Most of these products are administered based on the weight of the dog, so be sure to give the right dosage. Administering a big dog dosage to a smaller dog can be very bad for their health.
Another good option for getting rid of fleas on a dog is to give them a bath using a special shampoo that is designed to kill fleas. These shampoos usually contain pyrethrins or permethrin, which are effective insecticides. Be sure to follow the directions on the bottle carefully, as using too much shampoo can be harmful to your dog.
If you prefer not to use chemicals, there are some more natural methods you can try. One popular method is to make a mixture of 1 part water and 1 part vinegar. You can then use this mixture to bathe your dog or spray it directly onto their fur. The acidity in the vinegar will kill the fleas on contact.
A natural method for getting rid of fleas on a dog bed is to sprinkle baking soda onto your dog’s bedding. The baking soda will absorb any moisture in the area and will create an environment that is inhospitable for fleas. Just be sure to vacuum up the baking soda after a few hours so that your dog doesn’t end up ingesting it.
If you have tried all of these methods and you are still finding fleas on your dog, you may need to consult with a vet about other options, such as prescription medications.