Learn What You Need to Know about California Fleas

Versa-Tech Flea Control

Fleas have been a nuisance to humans and animals for centuries. Measuring just a few millimeters in length, these tiny, bloodsucking insects are resilient creatures that have adapted to survive in various environments worldwide, including here in Southern California. While their size may deceive, fleas possess remarkable abilities, formidable jumping power, and a notorious reputation for spreading diseases.

In today’s blog post, we’re diving deeper into what you need to know about fleas, the risks they pose, and how to rid your home of these pesky pests.

Flea Facts  

Fleas undergo a complete metamorphosis, progressing through four distinct stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Female fleas lay their eggs on the host animal, but these tiny, white eggs quickly fall off onto the surrounding environment, such as bedding, carpets, or grass. Within a few days, the eggs hatch into larvae that are blind and legless but possess strong survival instincts. Larvae feed on organic debris, including flea feces, and can remain hidden in dark and humid areas for up to several weeks.  

After reaching the pupal stage, fleas encase themselves in a protective cocoon, where they can stay dormant for extended periods, waiting for ideal conditions to emerge as adults. Stimulated by vibrations, heat, or carbon dioxide emitted by potential hosts, the adult fleas emerge, ready to jump onto their next victim. Fleas are exceptional jumpers, capable of leaping up to 150 times their body length, enabling them to effortlessly move between hosts or escape detection. It is this pupa stage that makes fleas difficult to eliminate. When fleas are in the pupa stage, they are chemically resistant. They are triggered by vibrations that will cause them to hatch out of the pupa. If there is no chemical residual actively present when the adult flea emerges, the adult will survive causing a recurrence or longevity of the activity. This is why follow-up services are set as part of any goods flea service. Also, using the correct chemicals such as insect growth regulators and a proper liquid chemical with a lasting residual to account for this is critical in any good service. It may take up to a few weeks to fully eliminate fleas. 

Flea Behavior

Flea Diseases and Risks Versa-Tech  

Fleas are ectoparasites, meaning they feed on the blood of their hosts. The most common species, the cat flea (Ctenocephalides felis), prefers to infest cats, dogs, and other domestic animals. However, in the absence of their preferred hosts, fleas are opportunistic and will feed on human blood as well. Flea bites can cause intense itching, skin irritation, and even allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. 

Fleas possess specialized mouthparts designed for piercing the skin and siphoning blood. Their saliva contains anticoagulant compounds, which prevent blood clotting and facilitate continuous feeding. These tiny pests are remarkably efficient at obtaining blood meals, consuming up to 15 times their body weight in a single feeding session. The excess blood is excreted as flea feces, which serve as a vital source of nutrition for flea larvae. 

Fleas | Diseases They Carry & Risks They Pose 

Aside from their annoying bites, fleas are notorious for transmitting diseases to humans and animals. One of the most well-known diseases associated with fleas is the bubonic plague, caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis. Although rare today, fleas played a significant role in transmitting the plague throughout history, leading to devastating pandemics. Fleas can also transmit various bacterial and rickettsial infections, such as murine typhus and cat scratch disease. 

In addition to bacteria, fleas can transmit several types of parasitic worms. Flea larvae can ingest tapeworm eggs, and when the larvae develop into adult fleas, they can transfer the tapeworm to a new host during feeding. This commonly occurs in pets that have ingested fleas while grooming themselves. Infestations with tapeworms can cause digestive disturbances and weight loss in affected animals. 

Preventing & Control Flea Infestations 

Preventing and controlling flea infestations requires a multi-faceted approach. Regular grooming and bathing of pets, along with the use of flea collars or topical treatments recommended by veterinarians, can help minimize flea populations. Maintaining a clean environment is also crucial. Along with proper flea management of pets, discovering and eliminating the source of the flea activity is critical in eliminating the activity, and is part of a proper flea service. Regular wild animal traffic or harborage around or inside a location such as stray cats, skunks in a crawl space, or a high population of rodents can contribute or be the source of the flea activity. Along with finding the host or source, property maintenance is key also. Making sure that grass is kept well-trimmed, bushes are not overgrown, and structural access is eliminated are all part of flea control and elimination.  


A flea treatment will take some preparation on the client’s part. Drying items such as bedding, blankets, clothing, pet beds and other related items on high heat for 60 minutes will eliminate any flea activity on those items. Also, clearing the floor and furniture areas of any clutter will help the treatment get to more surface areas and protect items that cannot be treated like kid’s toys. Treatment is done along all interior perimeter areas, surface treating carpets and rugs, and surface treating furniture items. Outside we are surface treating the structure perimeter areas, lawn and green areas such as planters and bushes. Crawl space and attic areas can also be treated. We have preparation guides ready for our clients. Plan on being out of the treatment area for about a day, 8 hours. Once the chemical is dry it is safe to come back in and live like normal. Fleas may be present for up to a week, and that is generally when a follow up service is set, one to two weeks after the initial service. All our flea services come with a 30-day warranty. We can also perform any exclusion work of the structure to stop animals from entering areas like crawl spaces and attics. Flea services start at $400. Click here to get started.

Do you have a problem with fleas in your San Dimas, Covina, Glendora, Pasadena, Los Angeles County or Northern Orange County home? Our highly-skilled, dedicated team of pest professionals are here for you! Book your free inspections and get your free quote today!

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