It is important to know how a flea grows and develops in order to prevent and fight infestation. Remember, this is war and we have to know our enemy!
Much like any other living thing, the cycle of a flea’s life always starts with an egg. A female, adult flea can lay as many as 10-100 flea eggs a day, during her life. Oh my! I shudder to think of that multiplied by how many fleas are lurking around a pet, the yard, the car…Obviously, the sheer numbers make it very difficult to halt the cycle.
The flea uses your pet as a sort of baby nursery, using the fur as a cozy bed and its blood for feeding. They lay their eggs right on your pet’s fur, but some of the eggs typically fall off onto your carpet, in your yard, on the furniture, you get the idea.
The next step in the flea’s life cycle is the larvae stage. The larvae comes out of the egg and then uses your animal to sustain itself. It does this by feeding on the pets’ dander and dried blood. Yep, it keeps getting better and better, huh?!
After the larvae stage, the flea becomes a pupa. Now, a pupa can lay in wait for months at a time in the carpet, on your pet, etc. It’s just waiting for the perfect conditions to present themselves. Ah, the joy of spring, when the weather warms, it becomes more humid and pupas become adult fleas.
This brings us to the adult flea. You probably already know what happens next. These guys jump around looking for the blood of a host. Yuck! It doesn’t matter if this blood is canine, feline or human. It just needs blood to survive.
To sum it up, in order to properly control fleas, we must keep in mind their cycles. They can actually phase through these cycles in less than 3 weeks, so if we want to “nip the infestation in the bud” then we will have to treat not only our pets, but our environment, too. No worries, we will win this war by taking no prisoners!