How Much Does it Cost to Get Rid of Fleas?
You love your pets, but you certainly don’t love when they bring fleas into the home. Fleas are among the most common household pests, with more than 2,000 species. Once the tiny bugs invade your home, they are extremely difficult to get rid of without hiring a professional exterminator.
About Flea Extermination
Fleas are small, wingless parasites that survive by attaching themselves to a host that provides nutrients. Most of the time, your cat or dog is the host. But if separated from animal hosts or unable to get enough food, fleas will bite humans, leaving the skin itchy and uncomfortable.
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The most common flea in North America is called the cat flea, but don’t be fooled by the name - it attaches to cats and dogs. Like other types of fleas, cat fleas have a tough time surviving cold weather winters if they’re outdoors, but they can survive and multiply in the warmth of your home.
If your pet is scratching more than normal, that is often the first sign of fleas. Even if you’ve used flea prevention products, it is possible the animal has been infested. Do a physical inspection of your animal’s skin to look for fleas. If you’re still unsure, take the animal to the veterinarian for a checkup.
Keep in mind that flea treatment is a three-step process. You’ll need to treat the pet, your home and your lawn to get rid of the problem entirely. In addition to hiring a professional exterminator, there are also many steps you need to take at home to get rid of fleas, including:
- Vacuuming and cleaning all carpets, floors and upholstery
- Washing all bedding and linens in hot water, particularly pet beds
- Cutting the grass to prepare for treatment
- Making arrangements for your family and pets to be elsewhere during and several hours after treatment
- Covering all unwrapped food
- Picking up clutter and tidying the house so all areas can be properly treated
Cost of Flea Exterminators
The price of flea extermination varies based on the severity of the problem, the company and your geographic location. Generally, expect to spend anywhere from $150 to $350 per residential treatment.
If the problem is really pervasive, you might have to spend more. If the fleas are burrowed behind walls or floorboards, for example, it will cost extra for the exterminator to get to those areas. Repairing the walls and floorboards after the treatment will also add to the cost. Or, if rodents or other pests are responsible for the fleas, you’ll have to pay to get rid of those, too.
Subsequent visits, if necessary, will cost extra. But, in most cases, they are not as expensive as the initial treatment.