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In addition to the itchy bites, fleas can also transmit diseases and possibly affect you and your pet's health if they are not controlled. Fleas live and feed on the skin of animals all over the world. Fleas are small (113 - 18 inches long; 1 - 3 mm), wingless insects with flattened bodies that are dark brown. Their small flat bodies allow them to move through body hair where they bite and suck the blood of their host. Only adult fleas bite their hosts. Female fleas can lay 30-50 eggs per day on their host and many of the eggs can fall off of the pet and end up in the carpet, furniture, pet bedding, or other locations. They hatch into flea larvae in about a week. After feeding on dried blood left behind by the adults, the larvae spin a cocoon and change into adults. That is why it's important to focus on both the pet and the living environment when controlling fleas.

Control tips:

If you are unable to locate your county extension office, or you have questions about the product(s) you are considering, please call NPIC at 1-800-858-7378 (8:00am - 12:00pm PST), or email us at npic@ace.orst.edu.

Additional Resources:

Last updated June 22, 2015

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