Flea & tick solutions for animal lovers
A case of the fleas or ticks is commonplace in Australian homes with pets. However, other residents are not immune, especially if you work closely with pets or your home was previously lived in by pet owners. Fleas and ticks bring an irritating itch to both humans and pets, and some people believe this is the extent of their harm. However, there are reports of ticks causing paralysis and even death in animals. Protect your beloved pets and family from these critters with the assistance of Flick Anticimex.
From Preparation to Treatment
How do I need to prepare my home for a flea or tick control treatment?
- Treat pets with vet-approved flea treatments. A bath with a registered flea product should be carried out ASAP, and all pet bedding and resting places should be treated with a product registered for the purpose. This should be conducted prior to making a booking with Flick Anticimex
- Vacuum all rugs and carpets, especially where any pets sleep or rest. Empty the contents of vacuuming into an airtight plastic bag, mist with an aerosol ‘bug’ spray and dispose into a bin.
- Clear all floors and built-in cupboards of boxes and any other items such as toys, shoes etc.
- It is preferable that any animals are removed from the property (or at least the vicinity of the treatment area) until the treatment has dried (a few hours).
- Remove children’s toys and any similar items from the yard. No need to move tables, chairs etc.
- Mow lawns, preferably within a week of treatment.
- If the yard is dry, pre-wet the yard area approx. 1 hour prior to treatment, to allow for optimum application to the soil (where possible).
- Discuss any other requirements with your local Flick Anticimex office.
How do flea & tick inspections work?
One of our professional technicians will inspect your home, checking internally and externally. Inside the home, all floor areas will be inspected, particularly areas where there are rugs, mats, etc. We recommend that these rugs or mats be replaced. The technician will also inspect areas frequented by your pets. These areas are usually the resting and feeding areas.
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What methods are used to control fleas & ticks?
Management and treatment of ticks and fleas are best achieved through an Integrated Pest Management approach. The main options include:
- Habitat Modification – Habitat modification involves altering the environment to make conditions less habitable. This is generally best achieved by changing the vegetation to increase the sunlight to the soiled areas. This will increase the surface temperature, which will reduce soil moisture and humidity. By creating drier conditions, the tick population will reduce. In practical terms, this means clearing of bushes, removal of leaf litter, removal of low growing vegetation, reduction in foliage cover, and keeping lawns cut. All these methods are designed to increase sunlight penetration to the ground and reduce humidity levels close to the ground. We generally discourage the use of mulch, as it is a favourable environment for ticks.
- Chemical Treatments – There are three forms of chemical treatments. First, there are personal repellents which can either reduce or prevent the incidence of a tick bite. Repellents can be applied to clothing and skin, depending on the formulation; however, they need to be applied regularly. Second, are host treatments which involve treating hosts with a longer lasting systemic product, so that ticks will be killed either on contact or once they start feeding on the host (e.g. tick treatments for pets). Third, is habitat treatments which involve the application of registered and approved insecticides to tick/flea breeding, congregation and travelling areas.
There are other methods to managing fleas and ticks outside of these two options, including:
- Physical Control – These aim to prevent a potential host from coming in contact with ticks. By staying away from high-risk areas the problem of tick infestation can be minimised or eliminated. It some cases exclusion fencing has been used.
- Biological Control – Biological controls can involve a number of factors including the use of predators or pathogens to reduce a pest population and host removal (removal of a host species can lead to a natural decline in the tick population).
Depending on the severity of the infestation, retreatment may need to occur to break the flea breeding cycle long term.
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Professional versus DIY Flea & Tick Control
Fleas and ticks are considered one of the most irritating pests for pet owners.
Many DIY flea and tick control methods are used as a preventative action before an infestation occurs. Otherwise, control methods, like veterinary recommended medication, are used to protect pets but not the entire home from fleas/ticks. Once a flea or tick gains access to your home, the problem will grow exponentially as some fleas take as little as 18 days to go from eggs to adult.
Without the help of approved and registers insecticides, your flea and tick problem will suffer, possibly spreading to other households. Ticks are also known carriers of disease that can affect pets and humans. Thankfully, Australia is generally free from tick-borne diseases.
Regularly wash pet bedding
02Regularly clean floors and furniture with vacuum
03Use general flea treatments and preventative methods on your pets
04Regularly mow your lawn