What To Do If Fleas Have Invaded Your Tennessee Lawn

What To Do If Fleas Have Invaded Your Tennessee Lawn

Springs has sprung and fleas are becoming more and more of a problem for residents in our Tennessee service area. If you have a pet, your furry friend has the potential to pick fleas up every time he goes out into the yard. If you don’t have a pet, fleas can come into your home on mice, rats, and other critters. And when flea infestations take root, those fleas are hard to control. So, what do you do if fleas have invaded your Tennessee lawn? You keep doing what you’ve been doing. Apply flea prevention to reduce fleas in your yard and prevent them from getting into your home.

Flea Prevention in the Yard

Fleas are brought into your yard by animals. The more you do to control wildlife, the fewer fleas you’re going to have in your yard. It’s just that simple. How do you control wildlife? Here are a few tips:

  • Keep exterior trash in sealed receptacles. Trash smells lure pests in.
  • Keep yard clutter to a minimum. Rodents and other small animals use clutter to hide in.
  • Create a fenced-in play area for your dog(s). This will keep animals from bringing fleas into that sensitive area and prevent your pet(s) from exploring your landscaping and picking fleas up.
  • Reduce moisture to make it hard for fleas to survive in your yard. Trim tree branches to allow the sun to dry shaded areas near your home. Create space between the plants in your landscaping to allow the air to flow through and keep the topsoil dry. Fix leaky spigots and hoses. Fix or clean your gutter system and fix any broken downspouts.
  • Put pet or livestock foods down only during meal times.
  • Do routine inspections of your exterior and address any entry points that rodents can use to get into your home.

 What to Do if Fleas Have Invaded Your Home

If you’re seeing fleas inside your home, reach out to a licensed professional. Fleas can be a nightmare to get under control. Also, consider an ongoing reduction of fleas in your yard to reduce exposure. A residential pest control plan that includes coverage for fleas is something every homeowner should have. Fleas and other pests can significantly threaten the health of your pets and everyone living in your home. If you’re in the Greater Knoxville area, let the experienced and friendly professionals at Russell’s Pest Control help you get the right plan in place.

When Do Fleas Become A Problem In Tennessee?

When Do Fleas Become A Problem In Tennessee?

If you have ever experienced a flea infestation, you know it is not a fun experience and that they are not easy to get rid of. When fleas invade an area, they multiply rapidly, leaving you with annoying flea bites that turn red and become quite itchy.

Typically, people with pets are more prone to have issues with fleas since the pets themselves pick them up. While outdoors they pick up fleas brought onto your property by other animals and then bring them into your house in their fur when they come back inside. Even if you don’t have any pets at all, you can inadvertently pick fleas up in your own backyard, at a friend or neighbor’s house, or at your local park. They travel on shoes, clothing, bags, or other personal items and, before you know it, your entire house will be invaded.

Fleas are mostly found where people and pets spend much of their time. You may most frequently find them jumping around in sofas, beds, and carpets. They have just one thing on their mind – food! Fleas feast on human and animal blood in order to survive and reproduce.

Problems Fleas Cause

Fleas are active all year long, but they become more of a problem in the southeast during our warmer months. Throughout the entire spring, summer, and fall seasons the flea population will flourish, especially since people and pets spend a lot more time outdoors during these times of the year. Fleas become more dangerous during this time, due to their large numbers. They can transmit tapeworm to pets and humans, and may also spread murine typhus and the plague. Mostly, fleas cause itchy red bites that can be annoying or even lead to secondary infections such as staph or impetigo.

Fleas are hard to get rid of on your own using DIY methods or over-the-counter products. Most of the time those methods don’t kill all of the eggs and live fleas, leaving you with an ongoing problem. Female fleas can lay upwards of 500 eggs at a time, and fleas can live for about 100 days. Flea infestations can become a huge problem in no time at all if not taken care of properly and in a timely fashion.

Getting Rid of Fleas

Flea removal and prevention is best handled by professionals. In Tennessee, you can trust Russell’s Pest Control to take care of your flea problems efficiently and effectively. We offer quality service to everyone in our service area, to control fleas and other pests that plague their homes and yards throughout the year.

Give us a call at Russell’s Pest Control to learn more about our state-of-the-art pest control technology and to get rid of fleas for good.

Are Fleas Dangerous To Tennessee Residents?

Are Fleas Dangerous To Tennessee Residents?

Fleas are tiny, flat, six-legged, reddish-brown colored parasites that feed on the blood of warm-blooded hosts. These pests most commonly feed on cats, dogs, and humans inside homes across the United States but are also spread by wild animals outdoors. Fleas have the ability to jump vertically up to eight inches and frequently travel on skunks, raccoons, and opossums. These parasitic pests will also hitchhike inside homes on shoes, pant legs, and pets; once indoors, they will reproduce very rapidly. The lifespan of a flea is about one-hundred days, which is enough time for a female to produce up to five-hundred eggs that will then be deposited in carpets, bedding, and other areas around your home.

Though these pests are definitely a nuisance, they can also be dangerous to both humans and pets. Fleas carry and transmit murine typhus, and are also intermediate hosts of tapeworm. Flea bites result in raised, itchy bumps that can cause flea allergy dermatitis; in some cases, these bites cause secondary infections due to the excessive scratching.

Fleas love warm, humid climates which is why pets and pet bedding along with the Tennessee climate is so appealing making it a hot-bed, literally, for fleas. Here are some warning signs you can be looking for in your home that may indicate that you have a flea infestation:

  • If your pet is exhibiting unusual behavior like excessive scratching, licking, or biting, especially around head, neck, tail, and groin, your pet may be infested with fleas; this itching is caused by the fleas crawling on your pet and feeding on their blood.
  • Noticing red spots on the skin of humans or pets, which may be flea bites. Some people or pets may experience an allergic reaction to the flea saliva; these spots can also easily turn into a lesion and can lead to a secondary infection.
  • If your pets are experiencing hair loss, this may be a sign that they are experiencing an allergic reaction to fleas or flea bites, but it can also be due to the excessive biting and licking.
  • If your pet is being fed on by fleas regularly, your pet may become anemic; pale gums are a common sign of this.
  • Finding flea dirt, which is small black or reddish-brown flecks that look like dirt, on your pet or pet bedding is a sign of bed bug activity; these are actually flea feces that are made up of digested blood.

It is important to treat your pets with a flea deterrent prescribed by your veterinarian on a regular basis; however, treating your pet and taking preventive measures against them will not necessarily prevent a flea infestation. Since fleas are very difficult to get rid of and can cause some serious health problems, you should seek the help of a professional pest control company like Russell’s Pest Control in Eastern Tennessee to handle any flea problems you are experiencing! We can eliminate an entire infestation of fleas and prevent them from coming back! Contact us at Russell’s Pest Control to learn more about our residential pest control options.

Flea Infestations On The Rise In Knoxville

Flea Infestations On The Rise In Knoxville

Our phones have been ringing off the hook with flea complaints. It seems that these parasitic little pests just keep coming back around in Knoxville, and homeowners, renters, and business owners alike want them gone and gone for good. Flea infestations are very common because they have two incredibly helpful traits for getting around, their small size and incredible jumping ability. No pest can hitch a ride quite as easily as the flea, and with plenty of warm-blooded animals on the move, they can’t help but end up all over the place. And once they reach your home, it’s time to eat, lay eggs, and settle in.

Fleas get into homes almost exclusively by being carried. For the pet owner, this is no surprise. If Fido spends his days sniffing around the backyard, he could quite easily return carrying some quiet stowaways. But how do these fleas end up in our backyards? And what about homes without pets? Well, wildlife is the main culprit. Deer, raccoons, and rodents can all carry fleas, and having these animals in the area greatly increases the chances of them getting into your home. Neighbor pets may also introduce fleas onto your property, and even a quick visit from someone carrying fleas could be enough to start an infestation.

This all sounds very scary, especially when we hear of fleas carrying disease or tapeworms. Luckily this is fairly rare, and there are some things you can do to minimize the risk and fight against flea infestation. Your first step should be getting pets treated for fleas. This is huge, as pets are a much easier host for fleas to take advantage of than humans. Next, vacuum regularly, even often. It is a fact that milder flea infestations can be completely defeated with vacuuming alone. Finally, flush any flea you see. Most often you will feel an itchy sensation on your arm or upper ankle; quickly grab the offending bug between your thumb and forefinger and take it straight to the bathroom. The fewer opportunities adult fleas have to feed and escape to lay eggs, the more quickly their population will thin out.

Another option and best one for defeating fleas is to call in the pest control professionals. While milder infestations can be dealt with yourself, as mentioned, it doesn’t take long for a flea infestation to reach levels that are more than you can handle with good housekeeping and diligence. Over-the-counter methods might be considered here, but they have their own health risks for people and pets, and it’s especially frustrating to enter a cycle of DIY pest control and find that it just isn’t getting the job done, even after weeks of effort. At Russel’s Pest Control we have been fighting the good fight against fleas and other pests right alongside home and business owners in the Knoxville area, and we know just what it takes to clear out a flea infestation of any size. A visit from us can identify risks and treat your problems, and even better, our year-round pest control plans cover at least 30 different common household pests, including fleas! Russell’s Pest Control can even put pest prevention methods in place to minimize the risk of future infestations. In fact, we’re so confident in our work that we offer a pest-free guarantee; if the pests return, then so do we, at no cost! Don’t let the menace of fleas keep you and your pets indoors. Call Russell’s Pest Control and let us defend your home for you, so you can enjoy it instead.

Top Five Flea Prevention Tips

Top Five Flea Prevention Tips

Fleas again? Fleas are undoubtedly one of the most annoying pests we face in Knoxville, but have you ever stopped to wonder how these pests got into your home if you have inside pets?  

Fleas are parasites and they are very successful at what they do. They can survive for long periods of time in many types of climates and can even lay dormant for many months without a host.

Now, it’s pretty obvious how outside pets get fleas; they jump onto your pet while they are roaming around outdoors. Once indoors, the climate inside your home is perfect for them regarding temperature and humidity, making it simple for them to survive. Flea survival includes reproduction, and their population increases pretty rapidly which makes them very difficult to get rid of.

But, what if your pet is an indoor pet or if you do not own any pets at all? Can you still get fleas? Well, sadly, the answer is, yes! Fleas do not need your pet in order to find a way into your home. Other ways they enter your home include on clothing, on shoes, and on pests like rodents.

As soon as these jumpy little pests find a host, they start their blood meal right away. Adult fleas will stay attached to hosts, but the larvae will move about and hide in your home in pet bedding, carpets, furniture, baseboards, and other cracks and crevices. Once they become adults, they feed and remain on their host…and so the cycle goes!

You need to avoid a flea infestation, and not just because their bite is annoying! Fleas carry and transmit some pretty serious diseases. Your pets can be at risk for tapeworm and secondary infections from scratching at flea bites; and people can become infected with endemic typhus and murine typhus among others. At the very least, fleas can keep you awake at night with itching, especially if you are sensitive to their bite.

So, how do you prevent fleas from entering your home, feeding on your pets, and becoming a full-blown infestation? You can follow these top five flea prevention tips:

  1. Treat your pets with vet approved flea control.

  2. Inspect your pets and pet areas frequently for fleas.

  3. Vacuum and wash pet bedding regularly.

  4. After time outdoors, check your clothing and shoes for fleas before going indoors.

  5. Contact a professional pest control service to help you achieve a flea-free home and yard.

In Knoxville and Eastern Tennessee, you can count on Russell’s Pest Control. Our Power Plan offers protection from fleas. To learn more about our effective, environmentally responsible services for fleas and other pests, give us a call today.

We Know Fleas Are Annoying But Are They Dangerous?

We Know Fleas Are Annoying But Are They Dangerous?

As any pet owner can tell you, the flea is the bane of our favorite furry friend’s life. But, a lot of people have no real idea that a home without pets can also become infested with these easy to get, hard to get rid of pests. These little beasts can be deposited near our homes by stray animals as well as by wild animals that rest a bit too close. They can also be introduced by rodents who might have snuck in while the homeowner wasn’t looking. However they came to be, a flea problem is so much more than a biting annoyance hopping from the carpet to an unsuspecting leg in the living room.

The flea bite can leave a red, welted, itchy reminder that can last for days on both a human host and a beloved pet. Continual scratching can, of course, lead to an open wound and infection if it is not cared for. It is also not uncommon for people and pets to have allergic reactions to flea bites making the matter so much worse. The flea carries around the larvae of the tapeworm. If the flea is accidentally ingested either by the pet or by a person, they stand the chance of developing a tapeworm. And still worse news, the flea is also a carrier of several diseases that their bite can be attributed to. Cat scratch fever and even the plague have been proven to have been caused by flea bites.

It is important to do your part to make sure that fleas do not become an accidental part of your household. If you have pets, make sure that you are using the flea and tick prevention treatments your vet recommends on a regular basis; and make sure that you are taking the time to regularly vacuum pet bedding, carpets, and furniture thoroughly as well.

The flea is a tiny bug, looking more like a speck of dirt then a pest on first glance. But, the moment it bites or jumps when you try to brush it away, it becomes quite clear that it is a flea. Once you see one, you need to be very aware that there is not just one in the house. Fleas breed very quickly and are extraordinarily difficult to eliminate.

When you begin to see fleas is when it is time to call Russell’s Pest Control. Our licensed pest control team is well trained on how to deal with problem fleas in a home. Our methods remove not only the adult fleas but also the eggs which so many over the counter solutions will generally not touch. A call to Russell’s Pest Control will put you back in control of any problem pest in your home, including fleas.

What Makes Flea Populations Thrive

What Makes Flea Populations Thrive

Fleas can seem like a mysterious pest, appearing out of nowhere and multiplying like crazy, but the more you learn about these tiny little biters, the more you’ll realize that they’re not really all that mysterious after all. There are really only a couple of things that will allow them to thrive in your home and in your yard.

How they get into your home is pretty simple. They ride in. If you have a pet, it is pretty much a no-brainer. But, if you have a flea infestation and no pets, it can make you scratch your head. It wouldn’t though if you had an ability to see how they actually got in. They probably rode in on you when you came in from the backyard or took a trip in on a mouse, rat, or squirrel. The one thing you can be sure of is that they hitched a ride. So, the first item on our list of what will make fleas thrive in your yard is furry animals. More animals coming into your yard from the woods and more animals going in and out of your home will add up to more problems with fleas.

The second thing that will allow fleas to thrive on your property is the right temperature. Fleas are cold-blooded creatures, and, like most cold-blooded creatures, they must rely upon the outside temperature to thrive and stay alive. If it is too cold, they will freeze and die. If it is too hot, they will overheat and die; but between 70 and 85 degrees, these pests will thrive. If you want to stop those fleas from thriving, there are a few things you can do. Reduce areas of shade in your yard so that there is no place to hide from the midday sun, and fleas will be very unhappy. If you’re finding fleas in your home, take bedding and clothing and put it into the washer on the hottest temperature. This should take care of those fleas in all stages of their life cycle; but, just in case, be sure to also dry those items on the hottest temperature as well.

The third thing fleas need to thrive and survive is moisture. If it gets too dry, fleas will get dehydrated and die. Moisture is also necessary for the development of eggs in your yard. However, if you want a beautiful lawn, it can be problematic to keep things dry out there. The best way to reduce fleas in your yard is with pest control.

Most people don’t think of calling a pest control company when they find fleas, but the truth is, calling a pro can save you tons of frustration. Fleas can be hard–if not impossible–to get rid of.

Don’t let fleas torment you or your pet. Get Russell’s Pest Control and get control of those pests. Life has enough issues without adding flea trouble to the list. Take back your yard and your home from fleas today.

Why Do I Have Fleas In My Home & What Can I Do?

Why Do I Have Fleas In My Home & What Can I Do?

“I have fleas in my home! Why do I have them, and what can I do?”

This is a statement we hear all the time here at Russell’s Pest Control. Fleas have got to be one of the most tenacious and irritating pests around. I mean, you don’t even have to own a pet to get fleas. How infuriating is that? And fleas can put rabbits to shame with the rate with which they are able to reproduce! Fleas seem to come out of nowhere in a hurry, and one seemingly lone flea on your sofa can turn into hundreds in no time at all. So how exactly did you get those fleas in your home and what should you do about it? Let’s take a look.

Pets are certainly the number one way that fleas come into homes, but they are not the only way. Fleas are looking for mammal blood. They don’t really care if it comes from your dog, your cat, your kids, or you. They will take whatever comes easiest. They are also lazy travelers. They will hop on anything that will bring them closer to their mealtime goal. They typically hitch a ride to your property on a passing raccoon, mouse, fox, squirrel, or any other furry wildlife friend. After all, what a deal! Free meal while you travel – it’s an all inclusive travel plan for fleas! Once in your yard, they’ll lurk around just waiting for the chance to pounce onto their next taxi (aka: your pet, your child, or you) and gain access to your home where they have shelter and ample access to blood.

You may be tempted to think that those fleas are nothing more than a nuisance. Not so! Fleas are known carriers and transmitters of disease to humans and pets. Dog tapeworm and rodent tapeworm are not only a danger to your pets, but to you as well. Both these parasites are introduced by fleas. Also, I am certain that you have heard of murine typhus and the plague! Yup, these are transferred by fleas too. Yes, the plague is still around and is still infecting people (even in the U.S.). Even if your fleas are not infected or hosting these, there is no denying that their bites are extremely itchy. Scratching of flea bites can lead to infection such as impetigo or staph. Any way you look at it, those fleas have got to go. But how?

Once fleas have gained access to your home, they are extremely difficult to eradicate because not only do the adults have to be eliminated, but you have to get to all those eggs as well. The good news for us here in Tennessee is that you can partner with Russell’s Pest Control to control fleas in our homes.

With a desire to serve his community by providing quality service at a fair price, Russell Bull began this company in 1971, and we have been living up to that goal ever since. When you partner with us for year-round pest coverage, fleas will not be a problem. Neither will a whole host of other common household pests. That’s because we utilize state-of-the-art technology and treatment options to safely and effectively control pests in your home.

If fleas are driving you crazy this summer, give us a call. Not only will we help you to eliminate those fleas, but we can also help you to identify access points and install exclusion methods to keep pests out. For good!

Adult Fleas Are Only The Tip Of The Iceberg

Adult Fleas Are Only The Tip Of The Iceberg

Are fleas driving you and your pets crazy? Have you already washed all the bedding in the house and vacuumed all the rugs twice, but those fleas won’t go away? It can be a real pain to get rid of these blood-eating pests, especially if you don’t understand what you’re up against. The scary truth about fleas is that only 5 percent of the fleas in your home are adult fleas. Those are the ones you notice. Those are the ones that wiggle through your pet’s fur when you part it down the middle or spring onto you when you sit on the couch. But there is a vast population of fleas you don’t see.

Pupae Stage

The next highest population of fleas you’ll find in your home are fleas that have grown to the pupae stage. This is when they have matured enough to make their own cocoon. In this stage they will be hiding in your pet’s bedding, behind baseboards, under furniture, in your rugs, and in other out-of-the-way places. Cocooned pupae make up 10 percent of all the fleas typically found in an infested home.

Larvae Stage

These are the baby fleas, and they make up an alarming 35 percent of the flea population in your home. Why is this alarming? Because all those babies are going to eventually cocoon and turn into adult fleas that bite. In the Larvae stage, they don’t eat a blood meal. They eat pre-digested blood from adult fleas (called flea “dirt”). But someday, they will be crawling on your pet’s fur and crawling in your bed.


Here is where it gets scary. Eggs make up 50 percent of the flea population in a home. These are laid in bunches of about 20 (usually in the fur of your pet) after a flea has had a blood meal. But, unlike many other insect eggs, flea eggs are not sticky. This allows them to roll off of your pet and “seed” the house.

What can we learn from all this?

If you’re trying to kill “adult” fleas, you will lose this battle. Adult fleas are only the tip of the iceberg. You need to kill the eggs, larvae, and pupae as well. This requires an application of special products to strategic areas inside your home.

If you’ve been battling fleas and you’re ready for the nightmare to be over, give Russell’s Pest Control a call. Our technicians know how to treat for fleas in a way that is safe for you, your children, and your pets. We don’t just kill adult fleas, we kill all stages of fleas in your home. If you were following the math, that is 100% of all the flea population in your home.

Help For Fleas

Help For Fleas

Summer temperatures are now upon us and, oh the joyous fun of all those summer activities. So many things are associated with warming temperatures, ranging from beautiful flowers to the newly hatched baby birds and wildlife. However, not all things are met with such happiness.

Warm summer weather also brings an increase of fleas. Your dog is beautifully groomed, bathed and has his summer haircut. He looks so nice for all the guests you are expecting this weekend. The house seems to be immaculate, the kitchen is spic and span and the aroma of fresh baked bread is floating throughout the house. Finally, you sit down to catch your breath before the guests begin arriving. Suddenly, you notice a speck out of  the corner of your eye. You reach to brush it off your pants when it quickly disappears. You look more closely and see two or three more of those “jumping specks.” About this time, you notice your freshly groomed dog scratching with a vengeance and one word leaps into your mind…fleas!!!

Most fleas enter into the house on your pet. Some come in on mice and other unwanted rodents. They also have been known to hitch a ride on your trouser leg as you walk through the grass into the house. Flea eggs do not stay on their host. Unfortunately, they fall off and stick in the carpet or even furniture until they hatch into larvae then pupae stage. Unfortunately, the most recent batch has chosen the day of your summer bbq to become jumping and biting adult fleas.

Identifying a flea population is one thing. Coming up with a quick, successful solution is another. You can be assured this is not the time for any those over the counter products and DIY flea bombs or sprays.

Fleas are very swift reproducers and are extremely difficult to remove from the home. Normally, the adult flea is the only thing that can be seen. However, all eggs, larvae and pupae have to also be found and treated to completely eradicate the flea problem. Any pets in the house must be treated at the same time of the home treatment. Contacting professional Knoxville pest control specialists, like the experts here at Russell’s Pest Control is the best and only real complete answer to ridding your home of your flea problem.

Russell’s Pest Control has three home pest control programs that include treatment and control of fleas in the house and other residential pests. You will enjoy the benefit of quarterly pest services, Russell’s Pest Free guarantee and year round protection from more than 30 common pests. The key to keeping your home free of fleas and other household pests centers on the year round protection and guarantee. Contact Russell’s Pest Control today to select the service that best suits your needs and enjoy your pest-free summer!