Fleas in our homes
In the summer months, flea season is in full force. For some areas of the globe, fleas are always in season. Fleas are nearly indestructible and they reproduce at alarming numbers. In many cats, fleas cause skin allergies with lots of scratching and raw bloody sores because they are allergic to the flea’s saliva from the bites.
Did you know that fleas spend most of their lives OFF your pets? Fleas spend most of their time reproducing off their host. They love living in carpeting and bedding (people’s and pet’s bedding), and nook and crannies. This is where they are laying eggs, which turn into larvae. The adult fleas jump back on their host, feed, then poop. That’s the little reddish-black specks, which is your pet’s blood. The larvae eat the poop of the adult fleas. Sounds lovely, doesn’t it?
Poisonous indoor flea control
The conventional way to kill fleas in our homes is a very toxic, poisonous method — for our pets and for us. The sprays, flea bombs, and powders are full of poisons that have a negative effect on our pet’s nervous system and weaken the immune system. These chemicals are bad news for anyone being exposed to them. Poisonous chemicals accumulate in our bodies and our pet’s bodies (birds and fish included) and have adverse effects over time. They may even cause immediate reactions. The pet aisles are full of containers of these poisonous flea control products, leading the consumer to believe they are safe for their pets! Have you ever read the Warning Labels on these products? Perhaps you have, but feel there is no other way to get rid of the fleas in your home.
If we want our beloved cats to have thriving health, we have to get rid of the poisons that weaken their immune system and lead to disease. Flea control is one area where you can help your cat to avoid being poisoned. But what to do?
Borate crystals, the safe way to eliminate indoor fleas
Borate crystals have been used for many years to kill fleas, flea eggs, and flea larvae. This substance is odorless, nearly dust-free, and perfectly safe for your pets, for you, and for children. Borate crystals are less toxic than boric acid and table salt! (Federal regulations require a warning label, but the product is not as lethal as the requirements make it out to be. Of course, you don’t want to ingest it or roll around in a pile of it.) When the eggs, larvae and fleas come in contact with the borate crystals, the crystals cut their hard exo-skeleton, and they dehydrate to death. It works for cockroaches, ants, and silverfish too.
The best part is the application of the borate crystals kill indoor fleas for one full year! As long as you don’t shampoo the carpeting, in which case you’ll need to reapply the borate crystals. I have used borate crystals in the past for indoor flea elimination, and I can attest that the application really does last for one year. Even with bare floors.
The brand I’ve used is by Dr. Goodpet, and you can purchase borate crystals on their website: goodpet.com
Applying borate crystals for safe, non-toxic indoor flea elimination:
1) Purchase the correct amount for the square footage of the area you are treating. (Amounts are listed with product: one canister of Dr. Goodpet’s Inside Flea Relief is 1.5 lbs. and treats 150 sq. ft.) My former home in Hawaii was 1200 sq ft, of which only the master bedroom and two smaller bedrooms were carpeted. The rest of the bare floor space, I applied it along the floorboards (trim). I used only two canisters. Considering it lasts for one year, it’s quite a bargain!
2) Thoroughly vacuum all floors, carpeting and rugs, under furniture cushions, and your pet’s bedding. You might want to shampoo your carpeting prior to application, since it’s best not to shampoo them after application.
3) Simply sprinkle the crystals all over carpeting and rugs, under furniture cushions, in the crevices of your pet’s bedding, and along floorboards for bare floors.
4) For carpeting, you then use a stiff whisk broom (made of corn, palm, or straw) to work the crystals into the carpet, rugs, and under the seam of the floorboards. This is quite a workout. I had to take rest periods.
5) For bare floors, I used a small dust pan brush to push the crystals under the floorboards as best I could. There was some still showing, and I left it there for one week before vacuuming right up against the floorboards to make sure most of it had worked its way under.
6) Wait one week before vacuuming the carpeting treated. During this time, the crystals will fall deeper into the fabrics and all crystals will NOT be removed when you vacuum.
7) Make a mental note or mark a calendar when it will be one year for the next application. You will also know when it’s been a year because you’ll see more fleas appearing (if your pets are going outside and bringing more in).
8) Please note, this does not prevent fleas from coming in on your pets or you. That’s another topic for another article. But it will kill fleas in your home, and then quickly kill any future fleas that get indoors and their eggs.
9) You will see the results in about one week.
Hire Flea Busters service to do the application
This is another option if you don’t want to bother with the job. They come to your home and apply their product. You can find them here.
Finally, have you ever experienced a bad reaction to chemical laden indoor flea control products? Do you have a safe, effective and natural method of indoor flea control? Share with us in the comments below.
Healthy Life Cat Coach