Flea-control (fail-proof eradication)

Old 05-17-05, 07:33 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Question Flea-control (fail-proof eradication)

Last Thursday I discovered that my room is heavily infested with fleas. I have three cats who, due to a shared-home situation, live only in my room-I used topical Advantage-like treatments and flea collars, and they're currently staying in my dad's room until I can fix the problem (we'll be treating his room afterwards as well).
My main problem, however, is that I have obsessive-compulsive disorder and an especially severe paranoia concerning small crawly bugs (ie haven't slept since Thursday, taking three or more showers a day, spending hours at a time checking my clothing to make sure it's flea-free). I've been camping out in the living room with a small bag of carefully inspected and sanitized clothing and a can of OFF! bug-repellent, which I'm surprised hasn't given me seizures because I use it so much.

The thought of going back into my room for an extended period of time to clean, wash, and treat my cluttered messy room- is almost too overwhelming to grasp. I managed, with the aid of rubber gloves, long sleeves/socks/pants, and strong sedatives- to grab most of the flea-riddled clothing from my very-messy floor, and put it all in trash bags. Besides that, no progress has been made. I'm more than willing to do the job of eliminating the fleas, provided that I can do it without them anywhere near my skin, face, clothes, or hair..if that's even possible.

Basically, what I'm trying to accomplish is TOTAL, fail-proof eradication of these little monsters. I'm ready to just light the room on fire at this point. I have "Hartz 2 in 1 flea-killing carpet powder", "Hartz flea-repellent for cats", OFF! flea repellent, and a third of a gallon of flea killer; I also live in a eucalyptus grove so I have unlimited access to the leaves.

-What orders/combinations should I use these in?
-How can I kill the fleas hopping around in my trash bags of clothes? Getting them to the washing machine is all I have to do but I don't want to "infect" any other areas of the house.
-Is there any alternative stuff I can use on my clothing/skin besides the OFF!, that I can obtain or make, without buying anything? I'm broke.
-How should I treat the mattresses on my bed?
-I read that virtually nothing can penetrate the flea cocoons, so re-treating the area after awhile is advisable. Would it be wiser to keep the cats out of my room between the first and second treatments?

Any additional advice, help, or suggestions would be immensely appreciated. Thanks in advance..
Old 05-18-05, 11:48 PM
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 15,047
Upvotes: 0
Received 2 Upvotes on 2 Posts
Flea infestation

Borax (found in laundry aisle) is often recommended for fleas. It is not toxic and you can sprinkle it on your carpet. Just don't breathe dust while applying, because it can be irritating to lungs. Make a shaker out of a cottage cheese container or jar other container that you can punch holes in lid. Sprinkle along baseboards, all over carpet, and anywhere else fleas may have laid eggs. You can sweep Borax into carpet with a broom to make sure it gets down into fibers. Let it sit for a few days and then vacuum it up.

I've heard that you can place on the floor a plate of water with a drop of dish detergent in it at night. Place a lamp beside the plate. The fleas are attracted to the light and will jump in. The dish soap breaks the surface tension and causes them to sink and drown. Run the vacuum like crazy to remove fleas, eggs, and larvae. Dispose of vacuum bag each time you vacuum and seal in plastic bag and dispose of it outdoors in garbage can.

If you do not take action, the flea infestation will continue to grow and fleas will find their way into other rooms of the house. A flea can lay 60 eggs a day. Wear long sleeves and pants and rubber gloves. Wash laundry in borax, rinse, and dry.

1. Apply Off

2. Treat cats and keep out of room until flea free.

3. Declutter room.

4. Apply carpet powder (Borax) to kill live fleas in carpet and mattress

5. A few days later vacuum carpet and mattress & dispose of bag as instructed

6. Retreat carpet & mattress in 10 days

7. Keep cats groomed with flea comb & maintain flea repellent as product label recommends
Old 05-20-05, 08:54 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
You said you were using Advantage type treatments, so I take it you were using another type of treatment but something like Advantage, If it was the store bought Hartz product you are wasting your money. Go get Frontline original formula and put on the cats the fleas will be gone off the cats and out of the house within 48 to 72 hours. Don't waste your money on the other stuff and also do not get the new formula Frontline get the original Frontline and use it once every three months and you will not have this problem again.
Old 06-04-05, 02:46 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Some more info on fleas

Dear Miki,

I understand your repulsion from these beasts very well. I felt the same way. I canít attribute much more to the great treatments offered by the other members, but I can give you an idea how to overcome your fear and disgust. When I found out I was neck deep in fleas, I freaked out, started jumping and running, and my whole body was convulsing. As much as I wanted to run away, I realized it was impossible. So, what I did was this. I clenched my teeth, started breathing deeply, got very angry, and allowed the adrenalin of war to overcome my whole body. I did not have any room for disgust in me anymore. The only feelings were rage and hate. I took a bowl filled with water and a little bit of dishwashing liquid, went into the most infected room, and as the fleas started to jump on my legs, I began snatching them like crazy, taking only a fraction of a second to put them in the water, and grabbing more and more, until there were no more left, at least no more willing to jump on my legs. It is easy for people to suggest embracing your fears, but it is not so easy to do it, if you donít have the right state of mind. I honestly believe that when you get that adrenalin pumping, the rest is easy. When I did this for the first time, I stormed into the room, and could not think of anything else, but this: ďO.K. now! It is either you or me! Letís see who is stronger and smarter. Letís see if I am going to let you win! You dreadful creatures! You bloodsuckers! You are not going to kill my precious cats! You are not going to run or ruin my life! No!!! Because I am going to kill you! Yes, you are disgusting, but you know what? I am big, scary, and mad, and there is no way you are going to prevail! No, you are dead meat! Oh, what a wonderful feeling of victory! One more is dead, and one more, and one more, and one more...!Ē

I am sure my psychology teacher would have me seek serious professional help, if she reads this, but that is a way to overcome phobias and fears. Take it from a person who did it. After the second time, I had no problem drowning at least 50 fleas on each visit to that room, and with every next visit, I was getting calmer and calmer, until they became just a small nuisance. To drown more, I purposefully wear shorts, so I can see them when they jump on my legs, but you can wear white or light color long pants. The most amazing thing is that I have never been bitten by these monsters. My husband is a different thing. :-))) Some say to eat row garlic and to apply lemon juice on your exposed parts to prevent biting.

I am about to deal with the whole flea problem in 2 days, when my female cat is going to stay at the vet for almost a whole day, because she is going to be spayed, and my male cat is going to stay with friends. What I am going to do is this. I will put Borax and salt (yes, table salt) into my vacuum cleaner, vacuum very well everywhere; then fog the place for a few hours; let it air for a few hours; then spray something called Demize carpet spray, which kills adult fleas and contains an IGR; let it dry; vacuum again in 2 days; repeat the whole treatment in 2 weeks and again in another 2 weeks. I will also put flea traps in each room. That ought to do it.

You can also use diatomaceous earth in combination with the Borax and salt, but I donít have the time now to order it and wait for it, so next time. The problem with this combination is that it does not get rid of all flea stages. So, you need an IGR as well. If you decide to use diatomaceous earth, DO NOT USE the kind for pools!!! It contains tons of chemicals that are harmful to you and your pets. Also, it has to be AMORHOUS and should contain NO MORE THAN 1% CRYSTALLINE SILICA. Plenty of websites sell the right kid and it is not expensive.
Here you can read about Diatomaceous earth:

These people sell the right kind. I donít know how much it costs, because you have to call them to obtain price:

Here is some cheap Diatomaceous earth:

This is a Diatomaceous earth based product: http://xxxxx

This company sells the stuff they use as professional exterminators, but I am not sure it gets all 4 stages of fleas. Besides, I think it is Borax based, and if that is the case, it will probably be cheaper to buy Borax from the store.

This is another website that sells the same product as the previous one, but gives you more info about it:

Another Borax based product:

Some more flea products:

I donít have websites for foggers, but you can easily find them, even in a pet store in your area. I read about them too and I do not think that Adams is a good brand to use.

I ordered the Demize carpet spray from here. It seems to me, it is the best product out there when it comes to IGR:

Whatever you decide to use, in no way you are to apply any essential oils to cats or around them. It seems like a great natural way to repel fleas, but cats do not tolerate essential oils. Also, a lot of people suggest you give your cats garlic in different forms, but that is not a good idea, because garlic is dangerous to cats.

I forgot to tell you something very important. When you go to your vet to get flea medication for your cats, buy Revolution. It works like Advantage and Frontline, but it is better and contains heartworm medication as well. It is amazing, because cats do get heartworms also, but not many vets prescribe anything to them. I read wonderful reviews about this Revolution stuff. It costs as much as Advantage and Frontline Ė around $10 per application. Something else that you might not be aware of is that these medications come in a package of 3. If you get 6 (which with your 3 cats will last you 2 months), most vets give you a 7th free. So, for every 6 months you will be accumulating 3 extra applications and will have a free month. It is a $30 saving and it is not to be ignored. If your vet does not offer a 7th free application, insist that they start this practice. Not many people buy so much flea medication at once, so they should do it.

I hope some of the info provided here helps and I wish you the best of luck!

POST EDITED: These and similar products provided in the links can be found in the DoItYourself.com store. Click "Go Shopping" and search.

Last edited by twelvepole; 06-05-05 at 02:17 PM. Reason: Commercial links that compete with the DIY.com store

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: