Cat Fleas – Effects on Cats, Dogs, & Humans

Table of Contents


Although there are many different species of fleas, the most common ones are:
Cat Fleas Ctenocephalides felis
Dog Fleas Ctenocephalides canis

What is the difference between Dog fleas and Cat Fleas?

Although one is called a dog flea and one is called a cat flea you won’t be able to tell the difference without the aid of a microscope.

The most common flea found on dogs and cats is the cat flea.
It is a misconception that dogs only have dog fleas and cats only have cat fleas.
It has been reported that 95% of fleas found on dogs and cats are cat fleas

Dog fleas are rarely found in the United States.

Fleas on Humans

Fleas do not usually live on humans although they certainly bite them!

What are Sand Fleas?

Sand fleas should not be confused with dog and cat fleas. They do not live in our homes or on our pets.
Cat and dog fleas eggs can develop in sandy situations and that is why they are sometimes mistakenly referred to as sand fleas. Read this article about sand fleas

Which type of fleas bite humans?

It is usually the cat flea that will attack humans. Most flea bites affect the lower legs of humans. Some people are very sensitive to flea bites and can have an allergic reaction to them.

Get Rid of fleas in your house and on your Pets is a detailed article on ‘Do it Yourself’ flea control

What is the best treatment for flea bites?

  • Try not to scratch the bites. Very hard not to I know.
  • Use Calamine lotion or anesthetic creams
  • Apply an ice pack.
  • Talk to your pharmacist about taking an antihistamine.
  • Wash the bites with antiseptic soap to reduce the risk of infection.
  • See your doctor if the flea bites get infected.

How do I know if my cat or dog has fleas?

Suspect fleas if you see your pet scratching. You can inspect your cat or dog for fleas by examining near the base of the tail. You may not see a flea but if your pet has fleas you will see evidence of them by the presence of flea dirt.

Flea dirt is flea excrement. It appears as black specks like grains of sand. If you blot these grains with a wet tissue or cotton wool you will notice reddy brown staining on the tissue.

Another way to detect flea dirt is to stand your pet on a white fabric such as a pillow case or on a white piece of paper and comb or brush your cat. If your cat or dog has fleas then the tell tale black specks will be found on the white fabric or paper.

How do I get rid of fleas in my house and on my pets?

You can easily have flea control in your home and on your pets forever.
Go to How to get rid of fleas – House and Pets