Check your pet's indoor bedding and favorite resting areas for white and black specks that resemble salt and pepper. Flea eggs and feces typically accumulate on the fabric or surface on which an infested pet sleeps. If you're unsure of whether the specks are "flea dirt," pat the area with a damp paper towel. Tiny red blotches will appear on the towel if the specs are from fleas, as the feces contain dried blood.
Put on a pair of white socks and walk around your home. Adult fleas, which are brownish-black and about 1/8 inch in length, will sometimes jump onto a person's ankles and are visible against the white color of the socks.
Mix 1 tablespoon of dish-washing detergent in a light-colored pan of water, and set it on the floor beneath a 60-watt or lower lamp, as recommended in the book "Fix It, Clean It, and Make It Last." Shine the light on the pan overnight, and examine the mixture in the morning for dead fleas that jumped or fell in.
Things You Will Need
- Paper towels
- White socks
- Light-colored pan
- Dish-washing detergent
- 60-watt or lower light bulb
- Small, itchy red bumps around your ankles and on your legs may indicate a flea infestation in the home. Flea bites show a single puncture point and often appear side by side in a row of two or three.
- Vacuum your home thoroughly and seal and discard the vacuum bag immediately if you notice fleas. Wash all bedding, too. This helps eliminate the infestation.
- Treat both your pet and the environment to eradicate the problem. Your veterinarian will advise you of the best treatment for your pet. He or an exterminator can also recommend proper environmental control options.