Can dogs also get fleas in winter?
In contrast to what many people believe, fleas can easily make it through winter, since indoor temperatures are warm enough for them to survive in. Outside, fleas die, but indoors, temperatures don’t drop below 0° C, creating an ideal environment for them to continue developing.
The behaviour of fleas on dogs
Fleas are only attracted to dogs to drink their blood. They sometimes lay their eggs in a dog’s fur, but are more likely to lay their eggs in the dog’s surroundings; in the dog’s basket, the carpet or other fabrics, for example. The eggs themselves decide when to hatch. When the eggs hatch, they’re small larvae at first. After four weeks, the larvae change into fleas. They have the unique ability to use vibrations to detect when the dog is nearby to drink its blood. As such, it often happens that they hatch on a large scale when sensing the first vibrations after a holiday for example. Larvae can survive up to a year and a half without sucking blood.
Fleas need blood to lay their eggs; they usually lay dozens of eggs at the same time. The eggs are sticky, making them hard to remove.
Should I continue to treat my dog in winter?
Has your dog had fleas in the past two years? If so, there’s a considerable chance that there are still eggs in its surroundings that could hatch – in winter as well. And, because fleas are usually only detected once the problem has become too large, we advise continuing preventative treatment against fleas in winter. Make sure to choose a natural solution, because there is already a lot of resistance against chemical substances. Natural solutions are also much healthier for your dog. Read more about natural ways to protect your dog against fleas here.
Don’t forget the surroundings
Eggs can survive for a very long time in your dog’s surroundings. Therefore, regularly clean your dog’s surroundings. Some examples of places where fleas can lay their eggs are:
- The dog’s basket
- The dog’s toys
It is best to regularly hoover and to wash materials that can be washed in the washing machine at the highest possible temperature.