Cat Flea Management

     Monitoring your pet for infestations is the most important part of cat flea control.  By just simply combing your pet for 5 minutes you can get an accurate and precise estimate of flea populations. (Rust 2005)  If your pet has become infested, elimination can be accomplished through using insecticides such as shampoos, sprays, dips, foams, spot-ons, collars, powders, and oral systemics.   When selecting an insecticide formulation you should be sure take into account the several factors, such as the species and age of the animal treated, the level of infestation, rate of potential reinfestation, thoroughness of environment treatment, and insecticide resistance pattern of the flea population. (Rust and Dryden 1997)

      If you are looking into products, the safest "on-pet" solutions to use are botanicals or silica gels as flea collars have been found to, in fact, be ineffective.  After application of products such as dusts, shampoos, or dips, the animal may be free from fleas, but once it is put back into an infested area it is very likely that it will once again become populated.  Due to this it is essential to treat the home, yard, and the animal simultaneously.

     For yard treatment, insect growth regulators (methoprene, hydroprene, and pyriporxyfen) are suggested due to their effectiveness and safety to humans and pets.  For indoor treatments surface treatments or space treatments are often recommended. (University of Florida 2003)  There are many of these but a list can be found on page 3 of this pdf:

If looking to check a room for flea infestation a technique that can be used is to wear knee high white socks and walk around the suspected room for about 5 minutes while counting or just watching the number of fleas that jump onto the socks. Otherwise another tool you can use is a hand-held vacuum cleaner with a handkerchief inserted into the dust bag.  This technique has actually been shown to collect 96% of the adult fleas in the room. (Rust and Dryden 1997)

For more information and a great list of flea management products visit: