Eradicating fleas (and eggs) in empty house

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I have to 'fumigate' two houses occupied until recently by elderly people with flea ridden cats. After several weeks of non-occupation I assumed it was safe to enter but I still get bites on my legs and I gather this will continue as my footsteps disturb the fleas and 'activate' the eggs/larvae/pupa. I've done the usual Google and it's all very interesting reading!
Can anyone suggest where I can buy the supplies to fumigate the houses myself please? Whatever I get needs to have a 'residual' effect to eliminate future hatchings. Or am I right in thinking one can no longer get these sort of chemicals and I have no choice but to bring in the pest control experts and pay the bill?
The only thing I can get is a sulphur candle from the garden centres but I doubt that will be very effective. I have face masks, pressurised mask, protection suit, long gloves.
many thanks
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Flea eggs can last for months in the right conditions, but they don't hatch immediately so there must be some live ones still left.
Go to a vet and get some spray (I've forgotten the name, but it comes in a tall black & white spray) It's not cheap probably 8 quid a can. You'll need a can or 2 per floor.
Vacuum the house, spray the floors, nooks & crannies, leave a day then vacuum and spray again.
I have a cat which is allergic to fleas and this is what I do in the house from time to time. End of summer is probably the worst time.
If you are bothered by them as you are working there, get some DEET from an outdoorsy style shop and spray your legs and arms - look for stuff with 50% DEET in it. DEET is horrible, nasty stuff, but seems to work well on just about any biting insect I've used it against. IT won't be called DEET, but look for it in the ingredients.
Good luck!
Gordon
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says...

One brand is called Acclaim. This works by inhibiting the development of the eggs and larvae. As well as the nooks and crannies pay particular attention to any soft-furnishings and carpets.
Colin
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On Tue, 16 Sep 2003 12:27:56 +0000 (UTC), snipped-for-privacy@unicorn.drogon.net (Gordon Henderson) wrote:

Friend of mine used DEET, after a change of tenant in a flat they rented out. Despite the tenancy agreement, they had kept a number of flea-ridden moggies.
It melted the carpet ! Afterwards the pile was sticking together with a thin solidified crust at the top of the strands.
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Andy Dingley wrote:

He applied the DEET to the carpet? I thought it was meant to be a repellent, not a pesticide.
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interesting
get
Try a local vet surgery or the local council environmental department. I had this problem a few years back and had to use "flea bombs" which are probably similar to the sulphur candle. It may be that with recent legislation regarding chemicals and pest control doing it yourself is no longer an option.
Regardless of whether you can do it yourself or have to pay an "expert" I would strongly recommend that all soft furnishings (carpets, curtains, furniture) are removed and destroyed as these will harbour eggs.
Good luck,
P.
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wrote:

To be honest I'd get the local pest control guy to come and have a look. We had a rat visit our loft last winter so my wife called the local council, they sent the guy over, he checked the loft and laid some bait and then left. Cost was about 30 quid as I recall.
That might sound a lot based upon what he actually did in terms of physical work, but he was extremely knowledgeable about the problem and very willing to discuss what to do to resolve it. That sort of expertise is worth a lot of money, and you can borrow his brains for a half hour then set to with what he suggests. Well worth 30 quid for us.
Unlike a more commercial enterprise the pest control people don't seem to want to come along and stroke their chin whilst saying "ooh, I haven't seen one that bad before, let me see which week I can book in to resolve this problem....".
PoP
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wrote:

Permethrin-based stuff is not too bad to use. Spray, close door for 30 minutes and then ventilate. A good vacuum to get the eggs up helps as well.
Don't buy from a vet - cheaper from a pet shop...vets often have a big mark-up.
Is Pet City still in existence?
--
Bob Eager
rde at tavi.co.uk
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I had a similar problem with a former pub I bought. Walking through the bar area activated fleas a couple of years after the last dog had sat there. A good clean through with a powerful vacuum cleaner and a generous application of pyrethrum dust got rid of them. The stuff you buy from the vets is effective, but if there are no animals in the property you need to clear, there is little point in paying the extra for a product that is guaranteed to be safe for use with pets.
Colin Bignell
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It may be an old wives' tale, but I've heard that if you put a bowl of hot water on the floor, the heat attracts fleas - they jump towards it and drown. Can't hurt to try!
Incidentally for anyone needing "Frontline" I recommend http://www.pets-megastore.com.au/ - even with postage from Australia it's about half the price we pay at the vet.
--
Laurie R



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I heard this and tried it - didn't work!!
P.
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snipped-for-privacy@elessar.org.uk says...

It works for adult fleas which can jump and then only those within spitting distance while the water is warm. It is bugger all effect on the larvae and the eggs which are the real problem in the longer term.
Colin
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Hello BAH

Vets, "Frontline spray for dogs and cats". They also do drops, but that's no good for this.
VERY effective, just spray lightly over all carpets and soft furnishings. Kills live fleas/ticks and eggs.
--
Simon Avery, Dartmoor, UK
uk.d-i-y FAQ: http://www.diyfaq.org.uk /
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BAH wrote:

If I remember rightly, the vibrartion of you walking around causes the fleas to hatch. However, they have to feed within a certain amount of time after hatching before they starve to death. So you could spend half an hour or so walking around the house in big clumpy boots, and then leave the place empty for a week. :)
-Duncan
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"Duncan Lees" <duncan-at-snsys-dot-com> wrote in message

people
it
will
interesting
Fleas also need to feed on the blood of their natural host. Ie. cat fleas need cats blood, dog fleas need a dog, human fleas need people, for a particular enzyme that will only be in the blood of the host. Without the enzyme a flea can feed and irritate but it can't reproduce.
P.
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Also, I think that although cat/dog fleas can bite you, they can't survive on human blood and will eventually die off
--
geoff

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Well, lots of advice, but no-one's really hit it yet. I looked into all this in depth several years back, due to having some persistent problems.
The one effective method is to use those slow release flykillers like Vapona - but - some of them kill fleas and some dont. Look for the ones that use dichlorvos as the active ingerdient. With them in the place, your flea problem is history.
As far as destroying all the furninshings - no.
Dichlorvos is cat safe.
Regards, NT
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people
And also now banned in the UK.
--
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One other possibility (I missed the earlier part of the thread) would be diatomaceous earth - it looks a little like sand, but is extremely sharp and happily carves slices out of fleas as they come into contact, so they dry up and die.
If the house has been vacant, the flea eggs may still be lying dormant, and will only hatch when they figure out there`s activity around them again.
If you are doing the house up and haven`t yet put carpeting down, it might be worth just sprinking some about to see if it helps.
Failing that, get a "sacrificial" cat and some decent flea killer (Frontline works great) and the problem should be resolved within a few weeks with any luck :-p
--
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Gasp. Horror! Cover our Toastie's ears quick, hubby.
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