Fleas are a huge problem for many residential property owners, particularly if they currently own pets. If you have been dealing with red, swollen and itchy bites throughout your household, you may be asking the question, “Do fleas bite people?”. Knowing more about these parasitic insects and the impact that they can have on your household is key for identifying the source of your problem and properly resolving it.
Do Fleas Bite People?
It is important to note that fleas need a proper host. As such, humans cannot harbor these bugs. They need to have a warm-bodied mammal to live upon. You might find them terrorizing your dog or your cat. You may even have a hamster or another rodent in the house that you choose to keep as a pet. All of these common household pets definitely make suitable hosts for these bugs.
If you have a warm-blooded pet that can host these bugs, then you have probably noticed your pet doing a lot of scratching and showing other signs of physical and emotional irritability. When hosting parasites, dogs, cats and other mammals do not have any feasible way to get away from the source of their irritation. This can make them edgy after a time.
Given that pets are being bitten constantly, they can also experience a range of health issues as the result. This is especially true when an infestation is severe and many insects are living on a single animal. For instance, if left untreated, this is a problem that can cause your dog to become anemic. Anemia is characterized by significant behavioral changes and very low energy.
Some animals even develop painful and potentially dangerous, secondary infections. These infections can be caused by aggressive scratching that actually tears the skin. Once the dermis has been comprised, harmful microorganisms can find their way and serious problems can ensue. If your pet has blood on his or her coat, matted fur, inflammation or a fever, you should consult with a vet right away.
Although humans cannot act as hosts to fleas, they can certainly be bitten by them. Fleas are most prone to aggressively targeting humans when their populations become so robust that they can no longer be comfortably supported by host animals. If your dog is anemic and severely infested, it is only a matter of time before these blood-sucking insects will come looking for you and any other warm-blooded mammal that they can feed upon. Humans are also subject to secondary problems like anemia and severe skin infection when infestations are left untreated.
You may be wondering where your bites are coming from if you do not have any pets in the home. Surprisingly, humans can still suffer from flea bites even if they do not own cats or dogs. Some properties become infested with these insects as the result of more severe, underlying infestations.
As an example, you may have a family of raccoon or rodents living in attic or basement areas. If these wild animals are infested, the insects that live on them can bite you too. The only way to get rid of flea infestations and the ensuing bites in these instances is by first implementing a multi-dimension pet management plan that gets rid of the actual host.