Fleas - Safe Control Measures
Excerpts from Steve Tvedten's book "The Best Control"
(Used here with permission.)

[Pesticide Solutions - things you should know]
[Are Lice Resistant to Current Products?] [About the poisons in lice treatments]
[Symptoms of Pesticide Poisoning]
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[First Strike Measures for Fleas]


Preventing fleas infestations is always easier than removing them. The simplest and least expensive way is simply not have pets or only to keep them inside or outside at all times. It helps not to let your pets roam. Remember to keep your pets and their bedding clean at all times and to comb your pets with a flea comb at least weekly, especially during warm weather. Flea combs have very close teeth which remove fleas from your pet. Most pets love this attention. Dip the comb in hot, soapy water or enzyme cleaners to kill the fleas you "catch". If you choose to use dangerous flea collars you must replace them on pets about every 3 months. It is better, however, and safer to wash your pets weekly with a good pet shampoo, or wash them with a human shampoo and a mixture of orange oil (which is available at health food stores) as an aid in flea destruction. Please note that many pets and people can get skin irritations and other health problems because of their exposure to the poisons in organophosphate flea collars and other direct applications of toxic insecticide poisons in sprays, dusts, shampoos or dips. Proper control of fleas always involves controlling the fleas on your pets as well as controlling them in the infested areas of your home. There are many veterinarians who recommend weekly applications of a lightly misted flea spray containing Precor, which is an insect growth regulator, IGR, and/or sprays containing pyrethrins and pipernol butoxide as a control especially during the peak flea months in your area. Some pet owners have told us they have had success using diluted enzyme cleaners or Avon's Skin-So-Soft lotion directly on their pets or in their pet's bath water for safer flea control on their pets. There are many kinds of home and commercial flea preparations available for flea control on pets, but we suggest you check with your veterinarian and follow his/her professional advice. Great care must be taken, however, especially in the case of cats as they lick themselves and might swallow enough insecticide poison or shampoo to damage themselves. Please note there are many skin problems which can make your pets scratch, (as though they had fleas) that are caused by other factors, e.g., overbathing, diseases, etc., this is why it is wise to see several veterinarians before treating your pet for imaginary fleas with poison.


(Web Mistress Note:  A little license was taken with title and some emphasis.  However, the content is correct as it appears in "The Best Control)