Why Does My Dog Flea Bite Me and How To Stop It Happening?

The reason why a dog flea bites a human is because it’s all about the food! When a dog flea bites a human it wants to feed, and one of the most important things it needs to eat is blood. Does this sound familiar? It’s the same reason why a dog flea feeds on your dog – it wants to eat blood also.

Why Does My Dog Flea Bite Me?

When a dog flea bites a human, it wants food too. In this article we’ll show you the main reasons that your dog fleas bite and why your dog may be suffering from Dog Flea Bite Symptoms and how to get rid of Dog Fleas. It’s all about understanding what a dog flea wants, which food it’s looking for and whether or not you can satisfy that desire.

Dog Flea Bite Problems: If you’re reading this article, then most likely you have already been bitten by a flea (or more than one). So… why do they bite humans so hard? Because they want food. Fleas bite because they can.

If you’re wondering why you are being bitten and why your dog has fleas on them, then hopefully you’ve read this article so that you can have the answers you were looking for.

Whether they’re just a minor annoyance or an allergy inducing parasite, the nasty little critters can infect your whole family including your pet, so it’s important to know more than just how they look and what they do. Here is a list of every question you’ve ever had about these parasitic pests:

1. What are dog fleas?

They’re reddish-brown insects that feed on blood from their host dog and other animals like cats. Feral dogs are the host of choice for the flea, but they are also found on sheep, rabbits, deer and other wild animals. They have two pairs of legs and their heads are hairy.

The female dog flea can lay up to 50 eggs per day. The larvae mature into pupae for a month, then emerge as larvae within the host’s skin (larvae on dogs measure 6 – 8mm). They then mature further into adult fleas in four more weeks. Pupae have brownish-black heads and black bodies. The flea life-cycle takes up to two months to complete.

2. What do fleas like to eat?

They’re cannibals, so their host animal’s blood is their favourite food. However, they will not suck on human skin for this reason.

Underneath the skin, flea larvae eat dead organic matter. Adult fleas feed on blood which has been broken down into tiny droplets using their mouth parts.

3. How long do fleas live?

It is not known how long fleas live, but a flea called the Cat Flea has been found to lay eggs after only a few hours. It is thought that this has to do with the temperature and humidity of the area they are in.

4. How do you get rid of dog fleas?

Insecticides can be used on a pet at home, but this may not be appropriate for dogs that spend their time in the great outdoors. Systemic tablets are available, but these can be expensive and carry the risk of side effects. A topical collars are used to combat fleas on dogs and cats, but don’t treat the home or kennel. Fleas on dogs can be killed by ‘spot-on’ creams which are applied at an early stage.

Additional considerations include:

1. Vacuum your carpets and flooring: Fleas are tiny and light, which means they make their homes in some of the most protected places – dark carpet fibers or cracks in tile floors. Your vacuum is your best weapon against these pests, but don’t forget to empty it afterwards!

2. Treat your pet: You can kill dog fleas with shampoo, and some products are even formulated to treat your home.

3. Launder your dog’s bedding: If you have any blankets or comforters that your dog sleeps on, be sure to launder them in hot water and detergent to eliminate fleas and their eggs.

5. How do dog fleas get into your home?

If you live in an area where there are a lot of wild animals, then your dog is likely to pick up a flea infestation on their walkies. Wild animals like deer have a high population of fleas and they will get onto your pet when they go for a walk in the wild. Your pet may seem fine, but will pass fleas onto you when they jump up for a pat.

6. Do fleas have to bite you to infect you?

No, fleas can bite you and then die on your clothing. You can then bring them into your home and let them infect the whole family. This is especially dangerous if you have young children in the house who are still in nappies (diapers).

The reason for this is that a female flea can lay hundreds of eggs in a day. The eggs will surround themselves with sticky hairs which make it easy for them to stick to clothing fibres or hair.

7. What does a flea bite look like?

Fleas can cause itchiness and the bite will leave a red, itchy mark. The problem is that most people don’t know that they’ve been bitten – which means that they wear clothes over the mark. This can mean that your problems may not be solved until you pull your clothes off.

8. Why is my dog’s fur so itchy?

Fleas will bite on the skin of your pet causing them to become covered in red spots which are very itchy to touch. Itches can be extremely frustrating for both you and your pet because they make the dog uncomfortable and anxious.

9. What do flea bites look like on humans?

The bite marks will appear completely circular – about 5mm in diameter. The skin around the bite will be itchy and red.

The whole mark may not be visible to start with – sometimes only part of it will react to light, which could explain why some people seem unaware that they’ve been bitten.

10. Is there any vaccine to protect my dog against fleas?

There is a vaccine that can prevent your dog from being infested with dog fleas. But, this does not give protection from cat fleas or other types of sucking insects such as tics or biting lice.

11. Is there any home remedy that will get rid of dog fleas?

Vinegar is a common natural home remedy for fleas. But, it is only effective if you treat the whole family in your house with vinegar. The idea is that you bathe your pet in vinegar to get rid of fleas, then wipe all the surfaces with vinegar to kill off the eggs and larvae. You can follow this up by washing all bedding and clothing in hot water.

12. How big are dog fleas?

Adult female dog fleas are about 4-5mm long (1/4-1/2 inches). The males are a little smaller at around 3mm long (1/8 inch). Adult flea larvae are about 6-8mm long (1/4 to 1/2 inch).

13. Do fleas really bite humans?

Yes, fleas will bite humans on the skin. Fleas bite in order to suck blood from their host and then die. It could be possible for a female flea to drop her eggs into your bed or it could happen when you go for a shower.

It is even possible that you may have been bitten unwittingly while in the bath or changing your clothes. Fleas will bite humans and other animals.

14. What are the symptoms of dog flea bites?

Most dog owners don’t know that they have been bitten by their pet’s fleas. They won’t know about it until they start to feel a little bit itchy in sensitive areas – the neck, armpits, groin and ankles are common places for people to be bitten by their pet’s fleas.

If you cannot find the cause of your itchiness after two weeks, then it could be time to contact a doctor or pharmacist for advice.

15. How do I get rid of dog fleas?

Fleas can spread very quickly if you don’t deal with them at an early stage. You can use sprays or powders to kill fleas, but these can be expensive. A more cost-effective and environmentally friendly approach is to get a flea comb and some insecticide.

Apply the insecticide on the dog to kill fleas, then comb through with your comb to pick up any eggs. Wipe everything down with a hot water towel and leave it for 30 minutes before putting it all back in order.

You can then place an insecticidal dust onto your pet’s bedding, furniture and yard to kill off any remaining larvae or pupae in the environment.

This will also kill any other insects that are present in your home.

16. How to prevent the fleas from coming back?

You can prevent fleas from coming back by treating your dog and your home with a home flea remedy such as Flea Collar or Preventic Collar. A monthly flea treatment is also a cost-effective way to promote your pet’s health.

What if My Dog’s Fleas Persist After Treatment?

If after following the standard approach to removing the fleas on a dog, the fleas still persist, there may be other reasons. Flea eggs can continue to hatch for months and more than one treatment may be required to destroy all the offspring.

Fleas on dogs can also persist after being treated because of an infestation in the environment where it spends time or perhaps a second infection. Most often the main reason for persistent fleas that occur over and over again, is because of a second infection.

A dog can get new fleas from a number of sources. A new puppy or dog in the house, if not treated with a preventive product, can bring fleas into the environment. Even leaving the house for just a couple of hours may provide enough time for new fleas to be brought into the environment on boots and clothing.

A recently treated dog can become reinfested if it visits an area where fleas remain a problem.

In Summary:

Dog fleas are a very common problem for dogs and their owners. We have all heard horror stories of pet owners whose dogs were covered in fleas and then went around the house biting their family members until the family’s were driven out of their home.

Fleas are not only annoying because they cause your pets to be itchy for no reason, but are also a serious health risk as they can carry flea-borne diseases such as tapeworms, Lyme disease or heartworm disease. So if you have a dog…get a flea treatment!

The best tip for preventing fleas is to get them on your pet before they bite you. Then a dog flea treatment is essential.

References:

Pets Webmd

America Kennel Club

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