Fleas!

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Fleas!

Post by SaraBloo on Mon Apr 30, 2012 7:41 am

So my sister and I were talking about our current flea problems with our cats/dogs. No matter what we do they seem to come back faster than we can get rid of them.

Now, my sister caught my cat on top of the rat cage and it doesn't seem to phase the rats (Obvs we removed him right away) but I'm worried if some of the fleas get on to them. THEN, as we talked about it my sister noticed there was one on my cheek. I dunno where it came from, I haven't actually been that near the cat today.. only thing I've been near are the rats (Edith had actually been on my head not long before).

So anyways, just wondering has anyone dealt with fleas on their rats before? The one on my cheek was rather big, and I'd imagine I'd see them on Edith and Sybil if they had them cos they're still quite small.

I probably sound gross, though a woman at the vet said flea problems seem to be at a high at the moment.
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Re: Fleas!

Post by Simba on Mon Apr 30, 2012 7:53 am

Have you done all the hoovering the house/treating the bedding/ cutting down high grass in the garden or treating sheds stuff? They can reinfect animals fairly quickly if they're lurking in the floor or the couch.

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Re: Fleas!

Post by katherine on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:01 am

Don't worry about it. There are different types of fleas. Most of them on cats and dogs are cat fleas. These fleas can't live on rats or humans. They're pretty stupid though so when they detect an animal nearby the only way they can tell if it's edible or not is hopping on and having a taste, but they'll realise if it isn't right and hop off again, so if you get a bite that''s all it is and the same for the rats. However, they do live and lay their eggs in carpets, between floorboards, in cushions, curtains etc so treat your house - I swear by wipe out because it's non toxic - and vacuum regularly. Also treat both the cats, and the dog if you have one and comb them with a fine tooth comb - either crushing or drowning and fleas you find. Also as an aside, I'd definitely treat all the cats/dogs in the house for worms if they're not up to date as fleas carry tapeworms - disgusting things.

I know how you feel, one of my cats seems to constantly have them ... though I'm rather more lax with the treatments than I should be.

The main thing is don't panic, they wont hurt your ratties or you, they're just gross is all. Smile

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Re: Fleas!

Post by Zoundz on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:14 am

As above - rat fleas are not found in the UK or Ireland.

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Re: Fleas!

Post by SaraBloo on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:25 am

Yeah, we treat all of our pets regularly with flea stuff. Also tried a couple of different kinds. We also have a couple of different kinds of spray for the house that we've used and my dad cuts our grass every week. (Though that's just our garden, can't really stop the cats going into others gardens and no idea how they're kept.) Our vet also gives you vaccine and worming reminders so they're usually up to date with that stuff.

Glad to hear my ratties won't get them. I didn't realise that. I always figured if they can live on dogs and cats they can live on any pet. Though I knew they couldn't live on humans, so I dunno why I find it surprising my rats are safe. Lol.

Luckily I have no bites and neither have my dad, but my sisters and mum are getting bitten constantly. It's weird. Oh well, hopefully we'll get them cleared up. Embarrassed
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Re: Fleas!

Post by Catz on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:28 am

Ugh fleas.. I had a bad infestation of them a few months back. Fleas can be difficult to get rid of but a bit of hard work usually puts a stop to them.

First you'll need to wash all soft fabrics that the pets have been near (bedding, clothes, seat covers, curtains etc.) Any thing that can fit in the washing machine should go in.

Next you'll have to treat your pets. Treatments that go on the back of the neck are the best. Frontline, Advocate and Stronghold are good brands but avoid Bob Martins stuff, it doesn't work and is dangerous. I haven't had much luck with flea collars on an animal but I do cut one up and put it in the hoover bag to kill any I might suck up.

I treated the entire house with a flea spray as well (can't recall the brand) and sprinkled Borax powder (fleas eat it and die of dehydration but its non toxic to pets) on the carpets and on the mattresses. Then I hoovered every day religiously for about 2 months. Flea's lay their eggs in dark spaces to you'll need to treat all the cracks and crevices like under furniture, under the fridge and along the skirting boards.

It is important to note that while the fleas are in the pupae stage (in their cocoons) they are not affected by insecticides. The cocoons are watertight and protect the developing flea. This is why you may think you have killed all the fleas and larvae in your home but two weeks later a new flea infestation may occur as new fleas emerge from these cocoons. If this happens you will need to repeat the process.

Hope this helps Smile
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Re: Fleas!

Post by SaraBloo on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:32 am

Yeah, we use frontline and sometimes advocate. Also couldn't even try flea collars, my cats are like the king and queen of collar removing. Lol. They're gone within literally 20 minutes of putting them on. Laugh

Thanks for the advice! Smile
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Re: Fleas!

Post by katherine on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:54 am

Ooh that's a great idea about putting the flea collar in the hoover bag, Catz, also the Borax, thanks!

SaraBloo, there's no such thing as a silly question, as long as your minds at rest Wink

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