fondle pets treated with pesticides. Medicated
lawn cover sprays are not as effective as careful
treatment of pet resting areas and wild animal habitat.
ointments can be used on pets, especially dogs, with
severe flea allergy dermatitis.
Kennels, dog runs and dog houses are also
Indoor. Never apply pesticides until thorough
obvious areas to treat. Perimeter fences where pets and
wild hosts roam may be the pest interface between one
vacuuming has been completed.
yard and another. Crawl spaces, areas under porches,
Insect growth regulators (IGR) have proven very
and openings into basements and attics where pets or
efficacious in flea control. Growth regulators interfere
wild animals nest should not be closed off until the
with or replace natural hormones essential for the flea
animals are removed and the area adequately treated.
larvae to change into pupae. IGRs have long residues
Emulsifiable concentrates or microencapsulated
and leave a good margin of safety for humans. Since
insecticides can be applied as spot treatments where
IGRs do not affect the pupa or adults, fleas that have
labels permit. Emulsifiable concentrates of many
reached those stages complete their development. The
pesticides have a short residual when exposed to
"pre-adult" under adverse conditions (cool or dry
outside light and weather fluctuations.
weather) may not leave the pupal cocoon for a period
Dusts where they can be applied are often more
of weeks, even months. This means that some fleas
effective. Take care not to overapply dusts. Dusting
will be able to "dodge" treatments and expose
burrows or the protected nesting areas of reinfesting
themselves after pesticides have lost their
wild animals can be very effective and might eliminate
the need for trapping or killing these animals.
Spot treatments with pesticides are applied to kill
Pesticides should be reapplied when rainy weather
flea larvae and adults that come in contact with the
follows pesticide application.
sprays. These pesticides (e.g., microencapsulated
Ultrasonic devices. Clients have been led to
pesticides, emulsifiable concentrates, dusts, and space
believe that ultrasonic devices are effective flea
sprays) have varied residual periods. Carpet staining
deterrents. Cat fleas have NOT been shown to react to
or color alteration can occur and should be considered.
a broad spectrum of ultrasound; consequently, there is
The sprays should be applied as even, fine overlapping
no utility for ultrasonic devices in a flea management
fan sprays under low pressure. Overwetting carpets
must be avoided. During very humid weather, carpets
dry slowly and ventilation or dehumidifying is
necessary. Sprays will not reach larvae or adults deep
Thorough client education is essential both before
down in the carpet, but they will come into contact
and after flea pest management programs are
with the pesticide residue when they move up or out of
conducted. Clients must be well informed or they will
the nap. Some fumigant action may kill pests as the
not be motivated to carry through with the steps they
pesticide dries. Do not allow pets or children on the
alone can do. Flea infestations, often bring about
treated carpet while it is wet. Contact with the treated
emotionally charged situations -- especially when
carpet will also help kill adult fleas on an infested pet.
Preventive treatment. Preventive treatment is
anxieties prevail, such as when children are involved
or the infestation is long term.
helpful: where flea infestations were particularly
Pest management technicians must be able to
severe the previous year, where flea allergy dermatitis
clearly and patiently explain the flea life cycle and
must be avoided, where animals are in poor health,
how each stage is important. They must clarify how
and where outside infestations can be predicted. If
infestations can persist and that there may be no easy
IGRs are to be used alone, they should be applied
or quick solution. Where infestations are severe or
before spring flea activity gets underway -- at least one
where management procedures may not be completely
month before flea problems even begin to be noticed
carried out, a reinspection and possible retreatment
(depending on the local climate). IGR application can
should be scheduled before a rebounding population
be repeated according to predicted need.
cancels out all of the previous work and cooperative
When summer visitors bring their infested pets, a
flea infestation can be anticipated. Thorough
vacuuming should be recommended, but where
previously uninfested pets are involved, preventive
treatment with an IGR might be indicated.
Fleas are mainly parasites of mammals and birds.
Outside. Where pet reinfestation brings on
They undergo a complete metamorphosis. The eggs
repeated inside infestations, the outside environment
drop off of the host where they are deposited by the
should be treated. Random outside treatment or full
female during feeding periods. The larvae with
Module One, Chapter 7, Pg 4