Four Steps to Eradicate Fleas
Four steps are required to completely eradicate a flea population, and if they are not all done in the appropriate time frame, the fleas will be back in full force within a few weeks.
Step 1: Treating the Infestation on the Pet
Pets need to be treated to remove fleas. Effective methods for removing fleas include having the pet shampooed or dipped. If the pet has a mild infestation, a topical treatment, spray, or powder can be used.
Step 2: Treating Infested Areas Around the House
The house/apartment needs to be treated using a product with an Insect Growth Regulator (IGR). The IGR is a synthetic form of a hormone that prevents the flea eggs and larvae still existing in the home from developing and hatching.
Once a female flea is exposed to an IGR, any eggs she lays after the exposure will not hatch. IGRs can protect against flea breeding populations for up to 270 days.
If foggers are used, one must be placed in each room of the house/apartment. A hand spray will be needed for use under and behind furniture, drapes, etc.
A hand spray can be used exclusively, if desired, but it is much more labor intensive and can be very expensive in large homes.
Walls and the backs of window coverings that are near the floor should be sprayed at least to a height of three feet.
Foggers do not need to be used in the bathroom or kitchen, unless they are carpeted. However, a hand spray should be used around the baseboards and cabinet bases.
All people and pets, especially birds or fish, should be removed until the insecticide product has dried and the room has been aired out.
Step 3: Use a Preventative to Stop Re-infestation
Once all this is completed, the pet should be protected from a new infestation with the regular use of a product such as a topical treatment, flea collar or oral preventive from a veterinarian.
Step 4: Treat the Premises Again in 14 Days
Insecticides cannot kill one part of the four stages in flea development (the pupae), so the premises will need to be treated again in 14 days.
This second treatment does not need to include an IGR, although it is okay to use one if it is more convenient.