If your furry friend has been scratching more than usual, then you must check them out for fleas as soon as possible.
You need pretty good eyesight to spot these tiny, black, crazy-fast insects, but if you see any, you must act immediately.
You must treat your dog for fleas as soon as possible, for their comfort as much as yours.
Flea eggs, on the other hand, can be more difficult to spot.
As authorities on the subject of dogs and fleas, we’re often asked: “What do flea eggs look like on a dog?”.
So, today, we'll help you identify flea eggs, and give some advice on what to do next, should you find any.
What Do Flea Eggs Look Like on a Dog?
Flea eggs are tough to spot on a dog of any color, but especially difficult on white dogs.
If you know that you don’t have good eyesight, then it might be best to ask a friend or family member for help.
Even if you do have good eyesight, though, you still might need the help of a magnifying glass!
After all, there’s no point in spending ages looking for flea eggs and end up just missing them completely.
1. Useful Inspection Tools
Before checking your dog for flea eggs, see if you can get your hands on any of these useful tools:
- Magnifying Glass: As mentioned, a magnifying glass will come in handy for spotting foreign objects, as well as for closer inspection to confirm their presence.
- Gloves: Just in case you’re squeamish, you can use gloves, but not particularly necessary since a good handwash afterward will suffice.
- Tweezers: This item will help you grab any specks that you suspect to be a flea egg.
- Flea Comb: This is even better than tweezers to help you grab any potential suspects, although not ideal for all fur types.
2. What to Look For
We’re sorry to say that flea eggs are even smaller than a single grain of sand.
They are oval and typically measure around 0.5 millimeters in length and only about half as wide as that.
They’re also clear or look off-white, making them even harder to see in your dog’s fur, especially if your dog has thick, light-colored hair.
They also can easily be mistaken for sand or even small pieces of dry skin, which is why having a magnifying glass on hand is very useful.
Fleas will lay their eggs in clusters, so if you find one, then, in theory, you should find quite a few in the same spot.
If you think you’ve found one, then you can tease it out of the fur with a special flea comb to inspect it more closely.
It will help if you lay it on a dark cloth, piece of paper, or any dark surface for better contrast.
If the suspicious object is oval, then it’s more than likely to be a flea egg, sorry!
3. Where to Look
Fleas could lay eggs anywhere on your dog’s body, so the best place to look is where the dog likes to be fussed the most.
Under the collar at the back of the neck is an excellent place to start, but areas with less hair will make them easier to see.
What's more important is for you to check the places where your dog sleeps and likes to relax since flea eggs do not stick to fur.
They quickly become airborne and will probably be easier for you to spot against a dark-colored dog bed, carpet, or couch.
4. Other Signs to Look Out For
Other things you can look for, which you may have more success in finding, are flea larvae, flea dirt, flea bites, and the fleas themselves.
a. Flea Larvae
You might be able to spot flea larvae if the eggs have already hatched, although you have to be quick, or they’ll burrow into your carpets, furniture, and more.
They are also off-white and are like tiny worms ranging from two to five millimeters in length, depending on how old they are.
b. Flea Dirt
Flea dirt, or in other words flea feces, is easier to spot since it’s dark and crumbly in texture.
If you think you’ve found some, then you can place it on a piece of white paper and drop a tiny bit of water on it.
If it goes red, then it’s very likely to be flea dirt as the presence of red signifies the digested blood it fed on.
c. Flea Bites
Flea bites look like tiny, red, raised spots on your dog’s skin unless your dog has a stronger reaction to them, causing larger spots.
Other insects could also cause small red marks, but still, you should continue to search for other signs if you find any.
Fleas are around three millimeters long and usually brown or reddish.
They have flat bodies, move fast, and can jump incredibly far and high, which is why it’s so difficult to protect your dog from them.
How to Get Rid of Flea Eggs
So finding flea eggs or any sign of fleas on your best friend can make you feel anything from upset to downright freaked out.
But there’s no need to panic since we can help you get rid of them safely and quickly.
If you’ve recently treated your dog for fleas, then check the instructions of the product you used before treating them again.
Some products take longer than others to kill the intruders, and it also depends on where the fleas are in their life-cycle.
1. Treat Your Dog First
Find the best dog flea treatment available on the market for treating your dog to ensure you're using something effective and safe.
There is a good range of products from tablets to shampoos that can kill both eggs and fleas.
2. Treat Your Home Next
It’s also important to treat your home for fleas as the eggs fall off your dog easily and can hide and hatch in carpets and furniture.
a. Flea Spray
Use a good flea spray or make your own and spray it in areas where your dog spends a lot of time indoors.
Spray their bed, in front of the fireplace, literally everywhere where they like to relax and roll around.
If your dog is allowed on furniture, then don’t forget to target under the couch cushions and all corners.
b. Wash All Bedding and Throws
Once the flea spray has been left to work it’s magic, killing all fleas, larvae, and eggs, wash all your fabrics, blankets, sheets, and the like.
You must also wash the items in rooms where your dog is not allowed because humans can carry them around too.
c. Vacuum Everything
Vacuum everywhere, too, especially in the corners of rooms and couches and even gaps in flooring.
Don’t forget those hard-to-reach places, such as under and behind your couch and beds.
Top Tips for Flea Prevention
Preventing rather than curing flea outbreaks should always be a top priority for any pet owner.
Not only will your poor pup be saved from lots of unnecessary itching and discomfort, but you’ll save cash and time spent on treatments.
Another huge benefit is that staying on top of the problem will save you from hours of work trying to get rid of an infestation.
Carpets, rugs, couches, and cushions can all provide an attractive home base for eggs until they hatch and jump straight back onto your dog.
Some of the best ways you can prevent flea problems from going this far include:
1. Use Collars
Some collars can kill fleas, but these aren’t necessarily needed if you’ve already treated your dog and know that they are flea-free.
A flea collar designed to repel fleas can make your dog an unattractive host for when they come into contact with fleas again.
There is a huge variety of flea collars available, some use chemicals, while others use natural ingredients.
That said, always make sure that you change your dog’s flea collar as recommended by the manufacturer.
Also, flea collars can vary massively in their lengths of protection, so always read the instructions.
2. Choose the Right Shampoo
Bathing your dog regularly and using flea repellent shampoos will help to keep fleas at bay.
You can add some essential oils to your regular dog shampoo and make your own flea repellent wash.
Nonetheless, you can find a great variety of flea shampoos on the market; some kill fleas, while others help to repel them.
Just remember always to double-check the ingredients to make sure they are safe for your pet, especially since some natural ingredients aren’t recommended for dogs.
3. Use Essential Oils
Diffusing essential oils around your home can not only keep fleas away from your home but also make your home smell great!
As mentioned, adding essential oils to your dog’s shampoo can also transform it into a far superior one that repels all sorts of insects.
Just be mindful of the following:
- Use the oils in small amounts, remembering that your dog’s sense of smell is better than your own.
- Be careful not to use or diffuse citrus, peppermint, or tea tree oils too regularly. Even though they are often found in pet products, including shampoos and collars, they can be harmful to dogs.
Symptoms of allergy to look out for include watery eyes, runny nose, and excessive scratching; you should discontinue use immediately if you’re at all worried.
Some essential oils that you should consider are:
a. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is a fantastic and natural tick repellent that you can add to your dog’s shampoo, around five drops, or diffuse in your home.
Lavender contains the terpene and linalool, which also has a calming and relaxing effect, so it’s great for all the family when diffused late in the evening.
b. Lemongrass Oil
Fleas hate the smell of lemongrass, which is great news for those of us who love the smell of it!
The terpenes are citral and geraniol and you can add a few drops to water and lightly mist or spray your dog’s coat from time to time.
c. Rosemary Oil
Rosemary is not only an excellent flea repellent but also can be used to help heal flea bites.
Add a few drops to your dog's shampoo to help repel fleas and also soothe their skin.
d. Cedar Oil
Cedar oil is the number one go-to for pet owners who prefer natural flea remedies.
Cedar oil not only repels fleas and ticks, but it can also kill them.
You can add it to your dog’s shampoo or a water spray and spray them and their bedding.
4. Wash Your Dog’s Bedding Regularly
Speaking of bedding, regularly washing your dog’s bedding in hot soapy water will massively help keep potential flea problems at bay.
5. Regularly Groom Your Dog
Groom your dog regularly and check them for any signs of fleas at the same time. They’ll love the attention, too!
Using a flea comb will help you spot tell-tale signs, and as we know, early identification is key.
6. Look After Your Garden
Another tip is to make your garden as flea-free as possible; otherwise, you’ll have a constant battle with them hitching-rides into your house or on your dog.
They love clutter and debris, so get rid of it!
Pull weeds and keep the grass short to eliminate possible hiding and infestation areas.
Consider laying down cedar chips to act as a natural flea repellent for your garden, and they’ll look and smell nice too!
Even the word “flea” is enough for us to itch, and we wouldn’t be surprised if you’re scratching already after reading this!
Although identifying flea eggs is extremely difficult, it’s definitely worth trying since the earlier you spot them, the sooner you can do something about it.
Rather than asking “What do flea eggs look like on a dog?”, it's probably better to be familiar with how they look in general since they're easier to spot them in your dog’s bedding.
As a pet owner, it’s best to stay ahead of the game and do everything you can to prevent your dog from getting fleas in the first place.