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How To Get Rid Of Fleas In The Yard

One of the most overlooked places when it comes to getting rid of fleas in the house is what is just beyond the four walls of your home: the yard. When it comes to killing fleas, most people know to treat their cat or dog and home, but neglect the garden at the front or back of their houses. This is detriment to all your efforts, especially if your pet spends a lot of time outside.

While fleas do not like direct sunlight, they can still survive outdoors. This means even if you have managed to kill all the fleas on your dog, cat, and in your home, all your pet or you need to do is to be near the infested dirt or grass in the yard, and soon, you’ll be struggling to get rid of a flea infestation inside your house all over again.

So after you’ve given your house a thorough vacuum and all the bedding a good wash, and after you have gotten rid of all the fleas on your dog or puppy, cat or kitten, make sure you turn your attention to your yard.

Preparing to kill fleas in the yard

Treat your house and pet

First, focus your efforts on getting rid of fleas in the house and treating your pet for fleas. Vacuum thoroughly, wash everything at high temperatures and spray or fog your home if necessary.

When it comes to your pets, you can choose from one of three different types of flea treatment options available: oral and topical treatments, or collars. Bravecto is a great oral flea treatment product for your dog (and cat, as it comes in topical form as well). Bravecto chews (for dogs) and Bravecto topical kill fleas, eggs, and larvae, and provide up to 12 weeks of protection, preventing new infestations.

For pets who refuse chews, Revolution is a good topical treatment for both cats and dogs and will protect your dogs and cats from fleas for 30 days.

The Seresto flea collar is also good to use on your pet as it not only kills fleas and their larvae, it also provides one of the safest and longest lasting flea protection (up to eight months) for your pet.

After you have treated your house and pet for fleas, keep your dog or cat indoors before you begin work to get rid of fleas in the yard.

Find where the fleas are hiding

While you may find fleas hiding in different areas in your yard, there is a high chance they are not everywhere. To find where the infestation is and you can target your efforts there. Fleas do not like the sun and hot temperatures, so look for areas in your yard that are shady, warm, and moist. Consider the places where your pet loves to be, as there is a high chance you’ll find a thriving population of fleas there as well.

The usual hiding spots for fleas include the dog kennel, outdoor furniture, under the porch, near trees, below shrubs, and along the fence lines. Bear in mind fleas can hide in multiple places, so do a thorough inspection in order to get rid of all the fleas in the yard.

Treating your yard for fleas

Clear

Get rid of any debris in your yard. Mounds of dead leaves, grass cuttings, wood piles, bushy growths can all encourage fleas to multiply, so clear your yard of them. You want to make sure your yard gets as much exposure to direct sunlight as possible. Rake the area well and be sure to seal all debris in bags before disposing of.

Wash

Your pet will likely have toys out in the yard and these—not to mention the soft garden furniture—are favorite haunts for fleas. Wash any pet’s bedding, toys, outdoor cushion covers, and blankets at a temperature of at least 120°F to kill and remove fleas, eggs, and larvae. You may need to do this regularly—at least once a week—until you are sure you have eradicated all the fleas in your yard.

Mow

Give your lawn a good cut and trim back all shrubs and trees. This will enable sunshine to reach previously shaded areas, helping to kill the fleas in your yard.

Flood

A surefire way to kill all the fleas, larvae, and eggs in the yard is to inundate it with water. This is an easy option but may not be viable if you are an avid gardener with a yard full of plants that won’t survive a drowning.

Ideally, you want to flood your entire yard, but if you have a large and open yard, this may be difficult. In this instance, turn the garden hose on the areas where your pet spends the most time and ensure everything in it is slightly submerged in water to ensure you kill all the fleas, larvae, and eggs.

Diatomaceous earth

Diatomaceous earth is a fine white to off-white powder and is a natural way to get rid of fleas in the yard. Diatomaceous earth, also known as D.E., kills fleas by dehydrating them. Sprinkle diatomaceous earth around the yard to kill fleas. Make sure you purchase the food grade type as this means you won’t have to worry about it accidentally harming your pets or children.

Keep in mind diatomaceous earth only works in its powder form, so avoid using it during the wetter part of the year.

Nematodes

Another natural way to get rid of fleas in the yard. Nematodes (also called roundworms or eelworms) are microscopic worms that are harmless to humans, pets, and plants, but deadly to fleas. You can purchase beneficial nematode solution to spray, focusing on areas where you have found fleas, and they will kill the fleas, larvae, and eggs in the grass and soil. Nematodes don’t survive very well under the hot sun, so concentrate on spraying in the shadier areas.

Spray

There are plenty of highly effective commercial insecticides that will help you to kill the fleas in your yard. They normally come with a spray applicator, which makes it very easy to use around your yard. Concentrate on warm and shady spots since fleas will not likely survive in areas exposed to the sun.

While sprays will quickly and effectively kill adult fleas, some products do not get rid of the larvae or eggs. As such, you will need to repeat the process weekly for at least a month, in order to completely clear your yard of fleas.

At the same time, note that while the sprays are safe to use on your lawn and garden, they can still be harmful if ingested. So be very careful when using them, especially around animals and children. Allow the insecticide to dry completely before allowing pets and children out in the yard again.

Preventing future flea infestations

Flea treatment

Often, your pet is the main source for any future flea infestations, so you want to make sure you keep on top of preventing your dog or cat from catching fleas. This can be challenging, especially if you don’t have an exclusively indoor pet, but there are some steps you can take.

The oral or topical medication, or flea collar that you use when treating your pet for fleas are great for preventing future flea infestations as well. Using flea treatments such as NexGard, Revolution or Frontline Plus monthly (or every 12 weeks in the case of Bravecto) will ensure your pet has continuous protection against fleas. The Seresto flea collar, on the other hand, only needs to be replaced every eight months.

Mow regularly

A clean and tidy yard will reduce the chances of a flea infestation. Keeping your grass short and being vigilant about raking and discarding leaves will go a long way in preventing fleas from returning. Shady, cool, and damp areas are favorite hiding spots for fleas, so keep the wood piles and bushy growths to a minimum.

Water constantly

Giving your yard a good hose-down frequently means you are also washing away any adult flea droppings. This is significant because these are the main source of food for flea larvae.

Wild animals

Raccoons, feral cats, skunks, and a whole gamut of other furry wild animals play hosts to fleas. Try to keep them out of your yard as they will drop fleas, larvae, and eggs. This is especially important if your pets go outdoors, but even if they don’t, remember that fleas can also enter your home through your shoes or clothes.

Make sure you have a good fence and try to plant certain types of plants around the perimeter of your yard that these wild animals dislike. You can also use a wildlife repellant, but make sure you look for the natural and non-toxic types so your pets (or children) won’t be harmed if they come in contact with the repellant.

Cedar chips

Fleas do not like the smell of cedar chips, which make them an effective and natural way to repel fleas from your yard. Sprinkle them along the fence line, where sunlight doesn’t usually reach, where it tends to be moist, and in areas where your pet tends to hang out. Don’t worry if you do run a mower through the chips as this will only result in a fine dust that can be just as effective.


How To Get Rid Of Fleas In The Yard

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