How To Kill Fleas In The House

Updated November 29, 2020

I’ve previously discussed ways to kill fleas on pets and stop them coming back. Part of the solution may also be environmental flea control.

How To Get Rid Of Fleas In The Home

Here are some of the countless ways people kill fleas in their house. No wonder people are confused. Afterwards I’ll give you a more practical shortlist.

  • Apple cider vinegar (pet spray)
  • Brewer’s yeast (dietary)
  • Botanical dust (environmental?)
  • Borate & boric-acid-based products (environmental)
  • Capstar (insecticidal pill)
  • Diatomaceous earth (environmental)
  • Foggers or flea bombs (environmental)
  • Household spray (environmental)
  • Lavender essential oil (topical)
  • Lemon spray (pet spray)
  • Nematodes (environmental)
  • Pennyroyal plantings (environmental)
  • Pest control services (environmental)
  • Rosemary flea dip (topical)
  • Shampoos and collars (topical)
  • Sticky flea pads (environmental)
  • Vaccuuming (environmental)
  • Soapy water flea trap (environmental)
  • Washing bedding (environmental)

According to me, most of these ways are either not effective enough, hazardous, too hard or overkill.

Home Flea Killing In Adelaide

Here’s what I recommend for severe household flea problems in Adelaide.

  1. Focus on where your pet sleeps and where family members are getting bitten. Make sure this area is vacuumed thoroughly and pet bedding is washed in hot water at least weekly.
  2. Use environmental sprays containing insect growth regulators on these same areas. That way any leftover eggs will die without hatching.
  3. To avoid chemicals, many people use food grade diatomaceous earth in these areas. Just watch out that it doesn’t get airborne and be inhaled.
  4. I’m not a fan of flea bombs or foggers but they are safe if used correctly. I can see how I might use some if I was getting really frustrated. If so, follow the safety directions closely and take special care with fish, amphibians and your friendly huntsman spider.
  5. Many flea controls (especially spot-ons like Advantage, Activyl and Revolution) exert a local killing effect where your pet sleeps. Adding one of these for a few months to your existing flea treatment should help, and they are quite compatible with the flea tablets Simparica, Bravecto, Nexgard or Comfortis.

Fleas In The Garden Or Yard

I shudder when I hear of people treating the whole garden with insecticides. You’ll kill a lot of beneficial invertebrates and hardly make a dent in the flea problem. Treat outside areas the same way as inside ones, without the flea bombs of course.

Lastly, don’t forget that you can just choose to use one of the flea treatments recommended by veterinarians and wait. That’s until all the eggs hatch into larvae, the larvae all pupate, and the adults all jump on your pet, bite and die.

If patience isn’t their thing, your dog, cat or children might have left home by then of course.

Have something to add? Comments (if open) will appear within 24 hours.
By Andrew Spanner BVSc(Hons) MVetStud, a vet in Adelaide, Australia. Meet his team here.

2 Replies to “How To Kill Fleas In The House”

  1. We see a few fleas on our indoor cats since we moved to FL. I have been sweeping, vacuuming, washing sheets and such for weeks. We usually find one or two a day on each cat. Would lavender spray help kills the fleas?

    1. Any beneficial effect will be outweighed by the unpleasant or even possibly harmful effects. Scents or oils are strongly NOT recommended on cats.

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