Flea in home, but no pets

Blackbeard7Blackbeard7 Registered User regular
edited September 8 in Help / Advice Forum
Ran into something recently that is causing my mind goblins to work overtime and wanted a second opinion

tl;dr is I encountered and removed a single flea on my person very late saturday evening. I've never dealt with them with no animals present but I am aware just one is usually unlikely.

- I live alone and do not have any pets nor do I encounter any belonging to others on a normal day
- I have been at this apartment for almost 2 years so shouldn't be a present left over from prior tenant that did
- other 2 units in the building I'm 99% sure don't have pets
- my place is a studio apartment with hardwood floors minus one or two very tiny rugs that i checked to the best of my ability
- I have seen no further evidence of more fleas besides the one
- I was inside a petco the day before and bought a few items

My best guess is that I picked up the new friend at said petco and that I shouldn't be facing some larger ongoing problem, but having dealt with a flea crisis in the past this is really letting loose The Paranoia™. I've been aggressively vacuuming and cleaning to be safe

Is there anything I should keep an eye out for/do, or probably just chill out until I see anything more beyond the one I disposed of?

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  • Local H JayLocal H Jay Registered User regular
    The good news is that fleas can't really live off people so they'll probably just die. The bad news is they lay eggs that can last months and they can be hard to kill.

    One time my dog had fleas bad, and one of the tools I used to kill them en masse was a small plastic light that sits on the floor, with a sticky pad on the bottom. They're drawn towards warmth like moths to a light. It was only like 20 bucks on Amazon and killed hundreds of them.

    Also fleas can jump from people to people so it could have come from someone you interacted with

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  • HappylilElfHappylilElf Registered User regular
    Ran into something recently that is causing my mind goblins to work overtime and wanted a second opinion

    tl;dr is I encountered and removed a single flea on my person very late saturday evening. I've never dealt with them with no animals present but I am aware just one is usually unlikely.

    - I live alone and do not have any pets nor do I encounter any belonging to others on a normal day
    - I have been at this apartment for almost 2 years so shouldn't be a present left over from prior tenant that did
    - other 2 units in the building I'm 99% sure don't have pets
    - my place is a studio apartment with hardwood floors minus one or two very tiny rugs that i checked to the best of my ability
    - I have seen no further evidence of more fleas besides the one
    - I was inside a petco the day before and bought a few items

    My best guess is that I picked up the new friend at said petco and that I shouldn't be facing some larger ongoing problem, but having dealt with a flea crisis in the past this is really letting loose The Paranoia™. I've been aggressively vacuuming and cleaning to be safe

    Is there anything I should keep an eye out for/do, or probably just chill out until I see anything more beyond the one I disposed of?

    What Local H Jay said but I'd also recommend letting the Petco that you were in know that they might have been the source. I'm sure not all of them are the same, because chain business gonna chain business, but the one local has actually been really good about taking this kind of thing seriously. Though that probably makes sense considering it's a place that does grooming and encourages people to bring their pets into the store.

  • Jam WarriorJam Warrior Registered User regular
    edited September 8
    Fleas live in the wild. One flea could have jumped on you from anywhere. I really wouldn't give it a second thought unless you find more.

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  • dispatch.odispatch.o Registered User regular
    Even absent domesticated animals fleas would still exist in grass and on wildlife. Could have come from anywhere.

    If you had an infestation, you'd know... there would be no wondering. If you really want to set your mind at ease you can put a few pieces of tape sticky side up on the floor by your bed, the couch and your door/windows. Be warned, you will learn that bugs are all around you - all the time. Fleas are easy to identify though.

  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    edited September 8
    Vacuum your floor more than usual (maybe every day this week and next). Empty it into the trash and empty the trash. You'll be fine.

    fleas suck. My dog had them and it's annoying. Like professionally I've dealt with a massive bedbug outbreak, and fleas were harder to get rid of.

    Since you don't have a pet, it's way easier.

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  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    I feel like without carpet being in the mix, you dont have to worry nearly as much. We dealt with fleas a few years ago, which hitched a ride on a friend. The massive pain in the ass was really getting them out of the carpet and protecting our one animal. I woulds think that starving fleas would make themselves known by trying their best to get at you, so if you haven't noticed anything else, I would feel safe to relax.

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  • Blackbeard7Blackbeard7 Registered User regular
    Yeah my other thought was pure chance outdoors, they do come from somewhere after all

    I've been vacuuming daily instead of weekly so that the mind goblins can go back to sleep, but yeah I figured if there were more they'd find me.

    I planned to adopt a new cat in the near future and after the flea incident my prior cat had one time seeing one was like, instant nightmare scenario.

    Guess I'll just chill the fuck out then unless I see anything further, thanks folks

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  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    For what it's worth, the most effective flea trap I've ever deployed is a short-haired cat booby-trapped with that flea medication you put on their shoulders.

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  • TofystedethTofystedeth veni, veneri, vamoosi Registered User regular
    For what it's worth, the most effective flea trap I've ever deployed is a short-haired cat booby-trapped with that flea medication you put on their shoulders.

    God the invention of that stuff. Night and day compared to stuff at our disposal when I was a kid.

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  • SoggybiscuitSoggybiscuit At the edge of spacetime lies a path with no end.Registered User regular
    For what it's worth, the most effective flea trap I've ever deployed is a short-haired cat booby-trapped with that flea medication you put on their shoulders.

    God the invention of that stuff. Night and day compared to stuff at our disposal when I was a kid.

    If you like that stuff, the Serestro collars are amazing. Last about 8 months. We went from finding multiple ticks on our dog and cat to watching them die if they even came near them. Supposed to be good against fleas, but we’ve never had problems with those so I can’t vouch for that aspect.

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  • BetsuniBetsuni Insert Disk 4 and Press Any Key to Continue Registered User regular
    For what it's worth, the most effective flea trap I've ever deployed is a short-haired cat booby-trapped with that flea medication you put on their shoulders.

    Easier flea trap is to put a wide container (we used a pie pan) filled with dish soap and water (only need about a half inch deep) on the floor near where you sleep (or sit, wherever you think you'll have fleas). Dangle an old school incandescent night light bulb above it (around a few inches above the water) and go to sleep. If you have a lot of fleas you'll see some in the pan the next morning. We used to do this in Hawaii whenever we had a few fleas show up in the house and after a few days they would be all gone. The idea is that they go after the light and hit it, fall into the pan and drown with the dish soap (we used the all famous Dawn, but I'm sure all types would work) would help them drown.

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  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    You sure it wasn't a tick?

  • ArchArch Neat-o, mosquito! Registered User regular
    For what it's worth, the most effective flea trap I've ever deployed is a short-haired cat booby-trapped with that flea medication you put on their shoulders.

    All of the advice given here is solid, but I want to echo this point. One of my colleagues is a flea biologist, and this is his actual answer when people ask him how to deal with fleas.

    This kills the adults, and then as long as you keep the cat or pet indoors so it can't pick up a secondary infestation, the one-two punch of constant vacuuming and medicated cat will take care of the problem in about a month.

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  • admanbadmanb unionize your workplace Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    Arch wrote: »
    For what it's worth, the most effective flea trap I've ever deployed is a short-haired cat booby-trapped with that flea medication you put on their shoulders.

    All of the advice given here is solid, but I want to echo this point. One of my colleagues is a flea biologist, and this is his actual answer when people ask him how to deal with fleas.

    This kills the adults, and then as long as you keep the cat or pet indoors so it can't pick up a secondary infestation, the one-two punch of constant vacuuming and medicated cat will take care of the problem in about a month.

    My family used to have indoor/outdoor cats so we dealt fleas pretty much every year, but the worst flea infestation I ever dealt with was when the cats that lived in the apartment I lived in moved out and left their fleas behind.

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