Please Help with My Flea Problem

Updated on July 01, 2010
V.M. asks from Virginia Beach, VA
10 answers

I have scanned previous posts in regards to fleas but wanted to post my own and also ask for some encouragement - I am so frustrated, we have had our dog 9 years and never had fleas and this is my first encounter with them and I am about to go crazy. He has always been on frontline so I feel he must have picked them up when we put him in the kennel on a recent vacation. Since I have two small children and generally opposed to chemicals I am trying not to go some toxic route. We have salted the house about three times, I am vacumming every day, keeping my dog outside all the time but still the fleas are rather bad. I did relent and let my husband spray the back yard with a chemical which I hated to do but thought it may help. I just see no end in sight with the fleas and am grossed out by these little fleas jumping on me and the kids. Can anyone offer suggestions or encouragement. Thanks

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So What Happened?

We finally ended up calling Terminix and it was like a miracle - I do not think I saw anymore after they came - completely worth the money. We also changed my dog from frontline to Advantix - a little more expensive but from my research I think it is worth it.
Thanks for all your help.

More Answers



answers from Boca Raton on

I used to work at a vet and have 5 animals and 2 children. Try and use Revolution instead of Frontline. It is absorbed into the skin so it will not wash off and does not leave the toxic residue on their skin and works better! The flea collars are extremely toxic to your dog and the kids DO NOT use them. Go to the grocery and find a laundry soap with Boric acid (used to one called Borax) sprinkle that in all the carpets, couches etc. Salting is not going to help. Synerkil is one of the best products I have used for fleas and ticks. Good Luck!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Hi Victoria,
I just wanted to let you know that I think it is just a bad year for them. We don't even have pets and we had a really bad outbreak of them in our house and yard. My ankles were eaten up. My husband used the Ortho Home Defense and has used two bottles. We only have a few here and there now but he is going to spray again with one more bottle to help take care of it I hope. I used a nontoxic spray in the house. It is called Hot Shot Natural and it is in a white spray bottle. It has helped too. Good luck!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

I detest chemicals, too! I relented and agreed to have the yard sprayed with a liquid form of Frontline for outdoor use that is supposed to last 90 days and will keep the tick population down. We used Superior Pest Control to do the work (I won't get near the stuff) and they said the lawn should be okay for kids and pets as soon as the spray dried. I've kept everyone off the lawn for 24 hours just to be safe. Other than that, you should vacuum each day and throw out the bag immediately. Fleas can breed in the bag and repopulate quickly. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Orlando on

Try sprinkling Borax laundry detergent on your carpets. Grind it in with a broom and let sit for 30 minutes and then vacuum it up. It is supposed to suffocate the fleas. I tried this when I moved to a new apartment and my two cats had fleas everywhere that they would jump on the furniture, piece to piece to avoid stepping on the carpet. The Borax worked.



answers from Charlottesville on

Go to the grocery store, buy some Borax Powder (on the laundry aisle). Sprinkle liberally into your carpets and furniture in the morning. Go outside and have some fun for the day. When you get home vacuum it up (you may have to clean your filter with a toothbrush if you have one of the bagless vacuums). Do this once a week for 3 weeks and you will not have any more fleas. They eat the soap, which dehydrates them and kills them. If you have a baby who crawls on the carpets - you may need to find another method.
My former landlord had the house and yard treated multiple times and it still have fleas, we did this treatment the weekend we moved in (we let the powder sit for 3 days since no one was in the house) and saw very few fleas - and they didn't survive very long. It did pretty much ruin the bagless vacuum that my DH bought for the house, but it did get rid of the fleas and was inexpensive. You do NOT want to sprinkle the borax and sleep in the rooms before you vacuum the powder up because breathing in or ingesting great quantities of the powder (a little is fine) can cause problems in some people - dehydration if you are not careful, diarrhea, etc. We sprinkled the powder everywhere in the house and after 3 days there were no more bugs. We continued to sprinkle it in the basement and it killed all of the bugs (crickets, spiders, ants) down there, too.



answers from Washington DC on

Here is one non toxic solution that has worked for me. It is great if you have carpets. Any type of salt on your carpet for a day. Take a rake or your feet and get it deep into the fibers. Then vacuum it up the next day. You might have to repeat. Fleas spend more time off the animal than on. They are ocd groomers. So, they pick up the salt and like a slug, it dehydrates them and they die.They, like us, need water to live. Canadian fleabane baths for your dog works well.



answers from Sioux Falls on

He must have been ready for another dose when you boarded him at the kennel? Either that, or would your kides have brought in a stray dog or cat briefly? When your pet is frontlined, and there are fleas in your house, this is what is happening; the fleas cannot feed on your dog. They will die, so they are starving and still laying eggs and reproducing in your house! They will bite you and your family! Getting rid of the dog is not going to help. Call you vet, or better yet, an professional exterminator. It is going to be very hard to eradicate an infestation of fleas inside your home. They are very tiny and can hide in a million places! I understand you don't want chemicals in the house, but this warrants them. Call Orkin and get your home back!



answers from Savannah on

Retreat the dog with either frontline or advantage. These products are only good for a month for treating fleas. Fleas can't live off people
and they have about a 14 day life cycle. Look to your neighbors yards too. Has someone had a cat or dog they no longer have or got a dog?? You can get infested that way as well. My cats got fleas bad from my neighbors yard after they moved out and they had 2 dogs. My cats don't go outside by they do go on our screened in porch (on their side of the house too!) so the fleas lost their meal and came to our place to feast on my cats!! It took two months of back to back frontline to get them gone. I never treaded my yard or sprayed/sprinkled anything in the house. I did buy flea collars and cut them up and put in my vacuum bag to take care of anything that got sucked up and I tossed the bag into a walmart bag and tossed in the outside trash once a week till it was all taken care of too.

Good luck!



answers from Miami on

We had a flea problem too a few months ago. Unfortunately, we had to have an exterminator spray and it still took 3-4 months to eliminate them. The other things I did were vacuuming pretty much daily and throwing out the vacuum bag since fleas could jump out of it. I also washed every small rug in the house about every 2 days. I threw out our dogs beds and gave them folded sheets to sleep on and washed them very often. We found something way better than those topical flea treatments. Ask your vet for Comfortis. It's a pill they take and the fleas literally fall off the dogs dead in about 30 minutes. It lasts a month like the topical stuff. Our dogs did really well on it.


answers from Chicago on

Revolution is the best thing for fleas/ticks/heartworm. Ask your vet for it. If your dog is treated with it correctly, the fleas won't have a host and they will die out. Obviously the Frontline wasn't working or you didn't apply it correctly. Dogs and cats on flea preventives REPEL fleas, even when there are many around. So something was wrong there. Your dog should have never even gotten them. I promise you that if you put Revolution on your dog correctly, the fleas won't have a "host" and they will die. They need a host animal to feed on. They won't live on you. (If you have other pets in the house you'll have to treat them too.)

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