Is your dog or cat scratching themselves all time? Maybe you’re thinking, “They can’t have fleas, it’s the winter!” Often, we assume fleas are only a problem in the summer, before the first frost ices up the trees and grass. Unfortunately, fleas can be an issue in the winter as well.
In our homes, fleas can survive in low numbers all year-round because we keep our houses comfortably cool or warm, in direct contrast to the dramatic hot and cold temperatures outside. The flea pupa can reside in a dormant state for many months in the cracks of your wood floors or beneath the carpet.
On a positive note, winter is the best time to get rid of the fleas in your home, while the numbers are low. It’s much easier, compared to the spring and summer when flea populations are rising.
Common Responses From Owners Whose Pets Have Fleas In The Winter
How come no one in the house has flea bites? - The type of flea that bites your cat or dog doesn’t really care for humans. As such, fleas won’t bite people unless the population numbers are high.
We can’t have fleas, our home only has hardwood floors. – Unfortunately hardwood floors aren’t a flea deterrent. They can just as easily lay eggs and develop in between the wood boards of your floors as they do beneath your carpet.
I don’t see the fleas on my pet. - Often, your pet may lick or scratch the fleas away from the affected areas so you don’t see them. In addition, pets that are allergic to fleas do not have to have large numbers of fleas to be uncomfortable, just a few fleas can wreak havoc.
Signs Your Pet May Have Fleas
- Your pet is uncomfortable and itchy. Maybe they are scratching themselves every chance they get or you can hear them scratching at night as you fall asleep.
- You notice scabs or scratches on their skin.
- You see fleas, flea dirt or droppings (which looks like pepper).
If your pet is showing any of these behaviors or if you find fleas or flea dirt, bring your pet in as soon as possible for a checkup. If there are no fleas, your veterinarian can discuss other causes of itch and if your pet is miserable, can certainly help with your pet’s discomfort. One of the most effective ways to eradicate fleas is the proper application of flea products, especially in the winter when flea populations are low.
Please contact us (513-829-8989) today if you suspect that your pet has fleas!