The fleas that invade our homes and feed on our pets are almost always cat fleas, Ctenocephalides felis. Despite their name, cat fleas are just as likely to feed on your dog. They don’t usually live on humans, preferring furry animals, but they can and do bite people.
Dog fleas (Ctenocephalides canis) can also infest homes, though far less commonly. They also will feed on you and your cat.
Fleas don’t live on people, the human flea (Pulex irritans) prefers to feed on humans or pigs, but these parasites are very uncommon in homes and more often associated with wildlife.
Adult fleas are built for hiding in fur, their laterally flattened bodies help them navigate between pieces of fur or hair. Backwards-facing spines on their bodies help them cling to the fur when its on the move. Our relatively hairless bodies don’t make great hiding places for fleas, and it’s much harder for them to hang on to our bare skin.
People living with pets often find themselves faced with a flea infestation, as they multiply in number some will start to bite and feed on you. Flea bites typically occur on the ankles or lower legs, and can itch badly especially if you’re allergic to them.
While fleas rarely take up residence on the human body, they can and will live in a human home with no pets present. If fleas find their way into your house and can’t find a dog, cat, or something to feed on, they will use you as the next best thing.
For biting insect problems in Cardiff and surrounding areas call 02920 552243 to speak to a professional pest controller