Flea circus

7 thoughts on “Flea circus”

  1. OMG. What a nightmare.

    Your tale makes me think, PT, that you have bed bugs, not fleas. The reason I suggest this is that you haven’t seen fleas, and also what the vet said about high altitude. (That’s a new one to me.) Fleas are visible. If you turn your pet on her back they will be visible in the hair-free area (I call it the “park”). Bed bugs, I’ve heard, are hard to spot because they are not only smaller but nocturnal. BTW, Frontline works great on Winston, our little Yorkie.

    I wish you the best.

    1. Besides not seeing any of the classic signs of bed bugs (although I’m not seeing fleas either) is that the bites have tended to follow the lines of my underwear. Also my watchband. Things I don’t wear at night. Plus I’ve been aware of being bitten while sitting in the living room. I got a couple of more bites last night in the living room that I thought I felt at the time, but they weren’t visible until this morning.

  2. It’s not fleas. I adopted a kitten once – can’t recall where from – and didn’t realize it had fleas. After a while, I noticed I was getting bites, but hey… that was Indiana in the summer, lots of bugs. Then almost overnight, the carpet was infested with fleas! And I mean infested!! They reproduce rapidly. When I would walk inside my apartment and look down at my calves, there would be at least a dozen fleas there. At least.

    I tried all the bombs and household type sprays I could find. Did not work at all.

    Finally, I called in exterminator and told him the story. But also told him I was a poor college student and just could not afford a visit from a professional exterminator. So, he told me what to do…. (Now, mind you, this was back in 1994). I had to go to a Home Depot type store (this was before those existed). And in some section there was this gallon of flea spray. It was the strongest available directly to consumers. It came with a hand-sprayer – the kind where the thin hose goes down into the container, screws on, and another couple of feet of tubing to the hand spray. So, I used that and sprayed my entre apartment, which really was not that big. I mean everywhere! And, thankfully, it worked.

    Never again will I bring an animal with fleas into my home. Down here in NM, we don’t have fleas, thankfully. Too dry. They don’t like the desert.

    But the one ingredient that is crucial in killing fleas is Pyrethrins. It’s in flea shampoos and other flea products. That will kill fleas instantly. I’m not sure if the bombs had that in them or not, but if they did, then the concentration was too weak to do anything.

    When I worked at the vet many moons ago, people would bring their dogs and cats in for flea baths. Guess who the lucky person was…. me. The dogs weren’t so bad… but the cats were awful. Had a cat one time that was horribly infested with fleas. I would lather up the pet, and I mean really lather it. Then I would search through their fur and find all the fleas I could. Pull them off, then “pop” them by setting them down on the counter by the sink (they’re rather comatose from the shampoo – or possibly dead already, but I wanted to make sure) then I would use the flat of my thumbnail and press down hard until I heard and felt it “pop.” That when I knew it was dead for sure. They’re very thin in height, so the only was to smash them was using my thumbnail.

    If you are not seeing fleas, especially when you come inside and don’t see them on your ankles and calves. then you don’t have fleas. I agree with Jim above… sounds like bed bugs. Wow… I hope not. I really hope not.

    1. At this point it’s a mystery. I’ve yet to see either a flea or a bed bug, or evidence of either (but without reading glasses on, all specks look the same). Maybe some kind of mite? Beats me. Very few new bites in the last three or four days, but I’m still very jumpy. Housecleaners coming tomorrow. Tuesday I’m leaving dog and cat at vet for baths and thorough flea and skin checks while I do the Raid Fumigator (permethrin, a pyrethroid, is primary ingredient). I’ll probably repeat the Raid once or twice more, at weekly intervals. Maybe by Wednesday, I’ll be able to relax a bit. And I may finally treat myself to a new couch, if I can make up my mind about upholstery and styling. At the very least, all this has spurred a long overdue de-clutterizing of a house that’s really too small for me. I’ve got to come up with some storage solutions or just break down and pitch more stuff. We old ladies tend to cling to a lot memories.

      1. Well, best of luck! Sounds like more of a “normal” mite issue. We all have them (shudder). Never hurts to have the pets checked out – then that will ease your mind. Oh, and fyi… Raid Fumigator sucks – from MY experiences anyway. That what I tried when my apartment was infested with fleas. I might have well have sprayed holy water around the place and tried to do an exorcism on the bastards. I spent freakin’ $100 some dollars on that and a few other Raid products, and this was 1994 and I was a student. You talk about hitting me hard in my bank account….. Anyway, keep us posted.

      2. I was about ready to try anything. It was awful! I’m not kidding… I’d walk in and those bugger (literally) would be all OVER my ankles and calves instantaneously. When I called the exterminator, I was ready to beg for a payment plan, give him sex, something. But he was kind enough to tell me of the product at the hardware store to look for. That cost me less than $20.

... and that's my two cents