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You've spotted a flea on your dog now what?

Contrary to popular belief, there is no flea treatment that repels fleas. They need to come into contact with your pet’s fur or skin, in order for them to die. So don’t be alarmed if you spot one or more fleas on your dog, they can be dealt with using preventative treatment for your pet, cleaning in the home and some clever traps. We’ll explore just why the pests might be there and how you can get rid of all the fleas on your family dog.

It’s a gross and itch-inducing thought, but there will be many more flea pupae, larvae and eggs in your home than adult flea. The eggs will be hatching constantly when they reach the perfect temperature, and the adult fleas appear from their cocoons (or pupae). They only hatch when an animal is near to them, as they need their blood as food to survive. And only then will you notice them on or near your dog. If you’ve given your dog a flea treatment then as the adult flea feeds on your pet, this is when the cycle is broken.

You can pick up household flea spray for the home to get rid of both larvae and fleas, and it also stops the eggs from developing in the home environment for a whole year. Sometimes, it’s just bad luck that your dog happens to pick up a flea on a walk or in your garden. It’s possible for you and your kids to bring flea eggs in to your home on clothing or shoes too, so it’s important to use regular flea prevention medicine to ensure those fleas that are carried in will die within 24 hours of meeting your dog.

If you’ve spotted a flea infestation in your home, here’s a great overnight flea trap hack to help you kill some of the critters, quickly.

Grab a large plate, oven tray or pasta bowl, it will need to be wide with low sides. Fill it with strong soapy water.

Pop the bowl of soapy water in the area in where you have seen the most flea activity. Put an electric tea light behind the tray and, as the lights are turned off overnight, the fleas will be attracted to the electric tea light and leap into the soapy water. The trap works best overnight, so keep it out the way of any pets. Make sure your tea light is battery operated, never use a tea light with a naked flame.

In the morning you should be greeted with a flea graveyard, so remember to empty the water out and repeat again if necessary. Combine these traps with a thorough wash of all pet and human bedding at a high temperature, and keep your dog’s flea treatment up to date, to ensure even those rogue fleas that chance it on your pet will be stopped in their tracks.