We have a flea problem in our house. Can you help us by answering the
following questions so we can combat the problem?:
1. Are there human fleas versus cat/dog fleas, someone told me that cat/dog
fleas cannot reproduce by biting humans they need cat/dog blood. Is this
true? If so, how can we tell whether we have human or cat/dog fleas? Since
we have no pets, I am hoping we have cat/dog fleas and that they will die
out on their own.
2. Is Borax toxic to humans?
3. Once a flea comes in contact with Borax, how long does it take to die?
Thanks in advance.
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We have a flea problem in our house. Can you help us by answering the following questions so we can combat the problem?: 1. Are there human fleas versus cat/dog fleas, someone told me that

cat/dog
fleas cannot reproduce by biting humans they need cat/dog blood. Is this true? If so, how can we tell whether we have human or cat/dog fleas?

Since
we have no pets, I am hoping we have cat/dog fleas and that they will die out on their own.

AFAIK, fleas are fleas. The ones that rode in on my brother's dog may have
preferred dog blood, but they feasted on me nonethless.
2. Is Borax toxic to humans?

Not that I know of but I have heard that it's very bad for cats.
3. Once a flea comes in contact with Borax, how long does it take to die?

Don't know on this one. I can recommend that you repeat whatever you do
about 2 1/2 weeks later because the flea life-cycle is about 3 weeks. Then
you'll catch the ones that hatched after the first application but before
they reproduce. We always had much better luck with the chemicals from the
vets office than anything else.
Leigh in raLeigh
I once had horrible fleas. I got some basic flea powder at the store and dosed all the rugs. I took bedding to the laundry and ran it through boil/bake. Clothing was bagged for 2 weeks and I only wore things that could be boiled and baked. I vacuumed twice a day and put snipped-up flea collars in the vacuum bags, which I burned on a daily basis.
At the end of two weeks I was flea-free. Had to treat the cats for tapeworm subsequently...
Hi Suki,
There are many types of fleas, Non of them inhabit man exclusively. Flea bodies are designed to live on a particular host animal by grabbing onto the fur. Fleas will bite people ( as you have already experenced) but will not live on a person. Fleas have four stages of develpoment. Egg, larve, Pupa, and adult. When a pupa hatches it will feed on any warm blooded animal( you and me included.)
Boric acid is a stomach poison that works by being ingested. If you ingest enough of it you will be sick. Some people think that its dessicant qualities effect flea development but it is a more common theroy that flea larva eat the boric acid and it kills them.

The boric acid can attack an adult fleas outer cutical and kill it but it is not the most efficent method of control.
If you have a pet, most of the spot on treatments can solve your problem. fleas like to stay ont he host so by treating the animal you can eventually control all of the fleas. Without an animal your best recoures is to use a product that attacks as many stages of flea development as possible. Vaccum regularly, find a product to apply directly to your homes floor that is both an adluticide and has a growth inhibiting hormone to control further development.
Emotion: smile 1. Are there human fleas versus cat/dog fleas, someone told me that cat/dog Emotion: smile fleas cannot reproduce by biting humans they need cat/dog blood. Is this Emotion: smile true? If so, how can we tell whether we have human or cat/dog fleas? Since Emotion: smile we have no pets, I am hoping we have cat/dog fleas and that they will die Emotion: smile out on their own.
There is a Human flea that usually are spread by working with pigs. I believe it is more of an European/African issue than American. Cat/dog fleas don't need specific type of blood but have just developed as mentioned to specific furs and body temp of host animals. Cat fleas (I believe dog fleas too) will have a "moustache" of bristles where the Human flea will just have a few. Your flea problem may be from wild animals living under your home or in the attic or walls.
Emotion: smile
Emotion: smile 2. Is Borax toxic to humans?
As with anything else it can be and can also cause respiration problems.
Emotion: smile
Emotion: smile 3. Once a flea comes in contact with Borax, how long does it take to die?

I believe the Borax treatment, due to its particle size will mainly effect the larvae stage where as boric acid designed for carpet treatments will have smaller
particles that the biting adult will ingest and die from also. Borate treatments will be a slower mode maybe taking several days to see results, but can work.

Lar. (to e-mail, get rid of the BUGS!!
We have a flea problem in our house. Can you help us by answering the following questions so we can ... humans? 3. Once a flea comes in contact with Borax, how long does it take to die? Thanks in advance.

Ingesting borax can cause irritability, anemia, skin inflammation and lesions, hair loss, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and even death. Potentially lethal doses from borax ingestion are one teaspoon for infants, two for children, and five for adults. The most significant toxicity concerns for borax center around ingestion poisoning and its reproductive toxicity through ingestion. While borax has not been shown to cause cancer or mutations, some animal studies have prompted concerns that it may be a human reproductive toxin, and the California EPA is currently evaluating it for possible consideration as a reproductive toxin under Proposition 65. Borax's conversion to boric acid in water prompts concerns for dermal absorption through broken skin, especially among sensitive infants and children.

Cheers,
Ned
It's likely that the flea eggs were left in the house by previous inhabitants with pets. I have heard that the eggs can last for a couple of years undisturbed. Frequent vacuuming will help to hatch the existing flea eggs.
I believe the company "flea busters" uses boric acid in it's home flea treatments. You can use the same methodology at home by sprinkling the powder onto carpeted areas, then beat it into the fibers with a broom. Frequent, regular vacuuming will help in alleviating the problem.
I had this same problem that I solved by calling a professional exterminator. Problem solved.
As another poster pointed out, your problem may be caused by wild animals that have made a home with you. Rats or mice are common, and they have fleas too. This needs to be checked.
It would probably help to put a flea collar in the vacuum cleaner bag as well, but this alone won't solve the problem. Even if no animals are present, the flea eggs will continue to hatch in waves over time. Professional exterminators know how to deal with this.

Bill
What about diatomaceous earth (food grade) for fleas? I know it's supposed to work for insect control:
http://www.custommilling.com/Diatomaceous%20Earth.htm

http://www.usaemergencysupply.com/faq/diatomaceousearth.html

http://www.groworganic.com/a/item PMB105 DiatomaceousEarth50LbBag.html

Lauren

See my cats: http://community.webshots.com/album/56955940rWhxAe Raw Diet Info: http://www.holisticat.com/drjletter.html http://www.geocities.com/rawfeeders/ForCatsOnly.html Declawing Info: http://www.wholecat.com/articles/claws.htm
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