Fleas affect all warm blooded vertebrates and are very hard to control or kill. The most common flea species here in southern B.C. affects domestic animals, particularly cats and dogs.
Fleas are small (1.5mm to 3.3mm) and have a dark, hard body that appears thin and tall making it easier for them to move between the hairs on the host’s body. Their bites can be itchy, and be the source of minor dermatitis; more extreme reactions of red inflamed very itchy patches could be caused by flea allergy dermatitis.
Flea larvae don’t like the light so they seek dark places like room cracks and crevices to continue growing, feeding on shed skin, fur, feathers and dried blood in flea feces. In the pupa stage the flea can remain dormant until it senses that a suitable host is nearby, at which time the adult flea can emerge. Adults cannot survive for very long without a host to feed on.