There are over 2000 species of flea in the world. Thankfully, only the cat flea and the dog flea (Ctenocephalides felis, Ctenocephalides canis) are important to dogs and cats. Despite the name, cat fleas infest dogs just as much as they infest cats.
The problem is that fleas breed in stupendous numbers. Female fleas can lay from 20 to 50 eggs a day and up to 2000 eggs during their lifetime, which immediately fall off the animal, all around your home.
This is why, even today with very effective products to treat adult fleas, it may become necessary to practice Integrated Flea control where a combination of an Insect Growth Regulator, an adulticide and environmental cleaning (vacuum etc) are being used to tackle the problem from all sides.
The degree to which you need to control fleas will vary from person to person, and from pet to pet.
Where do fleas come from?
You might think that a pet kept entirely indoors would be at no risk of catching fleas. But don't forget that it only takes a visit from one untreated animal to trigger an infestation in your home, so even housebound pets may require flea control.
Pets that routinely go outdoors will likely come into contact with fleas from time to time, and require regular treatment.
Finally, some pets are allergic to relatively small numbers of fleas, and may need particularly stringent flea control.
Discuss the most appropriate level of flea control with your veterinarian surgeon. Before you do, though, it is important that you have a basic understanding about fleas.
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Flea Life Cycle
In order to understand how flea infestations occur, it is important to have a basic understanding of the flea life cycle.
Flea control is always best discussed with your veterinary surgeon who will recommend the best product or products for your pet.