The oriental mouse flea is also known as the tropical rat flea, or Norway rat flea is a flea that feeds on rodents, primarily Norway rats. These bugs are the primary carriers of bubonic plague and murine typhus, which occur when the flea feeds on an infected rodent and then bites a human. These bugs can also act as hosts for tapeworms. Did you know that any diseases they the mouse fleas do carry can be transmitted from generation to generation through their eggs? Yes, they do. And that you should control mouse flea’s infestation seriously.
Oriental mouse fleas do not have pronotal or genal combs, a comb-like structure found behind and below the head, respectively. This is what makes them different from other flea species like the dog flea and cat flea. They typically do not infest homes or pets but can be brought into your yard by rabbits, rat or mice. So if you have a pet mouse, rat or rabbits, it is imperative to clean environment to keep fleas and other parasites out.
Oriental mouse fleas grow 2.5 mm in length and consist of three parts; the head, thorax and the abdomen. The adult mouse fleas do not have wing; they are constructed to jump long distance with ease. Oriental mouse fleas can smell the heat and smell carbon dioxide as they jump rapidly to the source to feed. Do not their body lengths fool you; they can jump up to 200 times its body length.
One way to tell if you have fleas in your home is finding fleas bites on your skin. Oriental mouse flea’s bite will look like a tiny red dot surrounded by a red halo. However, there is no swelling, but some people and pets that are allergic may become itchy.
How to Prevent the Oriental Rat Flea from Feeding on Pets
If you stay in an urban area, one of the best ways to prevent an oriental mouse flea infestation from coming into your home is to limit the number of places that rats, mice and other rodents can hide. This includes keeping your home, garage, yard clear of garbage and food rubbish, as well as any other potential rodent food source. Also, call a pest control operator to inspect your property.
When you outside, make sure you use flea repellants on yourself and your pets, fleas like to hang around hiking trails and campsites where they can smell out warm-blooded host.
After your outdoor activities, always brush your pet with a flea comb, and if you find fleas, take your pets to the vet as soon as you possible for treatment. Oriental mouse flea’s infestation is difficult to remove from your home.
Some of the signs that your pet may have a flea problem are excessive scratching, licking and biting and scabs or hot spots on the animal’s skin. So the easiest way to check for mouse fleas on your pets is to gently separate the fur using a flea comb and look for dark, moving spots on the skin.
Get the help of a professional to help you prevent the flea infestation. They are the ones to call if you cannot handle oriental mouse flea infestation.