neohippie(8b)March 30, 2004

Does anyone know a good, safe, relatively non-toxic way to get rid of and/or prevent fleas on cats? I live in an apartment, and somehow my mostly indoor cat got fleas. There must be fleas outside from the strays around here, and she must have picked them up when she goes out on the balcony.

Most of the stuff out there looks pretty toxic. Is there any better way I can get rid of the fleas? If not, and I have to use the pesticides anyway, then is there at least a way for me to prevent her from getting more fleas once the ones in here are gone?

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I hate to tell you this, but you probably will have to bomb your apartment...flea eggs can live for 8 years in wooden floor...that's not rugs...which are better for flea eggs.
Neem oil baths can help kill fleas...I am trying this stuff called Bio-spot, which is like half toxic...

    Bookmark   March 30, 2004 at 11:44PM
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Put 1/2 teaspoon dried yeast in the cat's food every day as a prevention.

Put chamomile in the cat's bed.

Some people will tell you that feeding a cat or a dog garlic will help keep fleas away. It is probably true, but garlic and other members of the onion family can sometimes be fatal to cats and dogs.

Sprinkle with borax and leave for 48 hours, then vacuum. Keep pets and children away during treatment.
Wet pieces of newspaper with oil of cedar, scatter these over the floor, under beds or on rugs, and leave overnight. Fleas will gather on the newspaper, and you can put them, newspaper and all, into plastic bags and dispose of them in the garbage bin.

And, unfortunately, The Passenger is quite correct! It's no good just treating the cat. You have to treat it's entire environment, house and garden included. Borax is a very good and effective treatment, just sprinkled around, but you must keep animals and children away while it's there.

Salt will also help get rid of fleas, sprinkled around as with the borax. It kills the adults, and dries out the eggs. You could try bathing your cat in a weak salted water solution, but don't do it too often, or it may dry out the cat's skin too much. Or just rub a little salt through its coat, leave for a while, and brush out.

Having said all that, though, I think fleas can be a big enough problem to warrant some chemical big guns and professionals.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2004 at 3:46AM
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Ok, well, thanks for the suggestions. It's just that, I looked at this container of commmercial flea powder, and it has all these warnings about not breathing it in, using it in a well ventillated area, etc, and then it tells you to sprinkle it all over your cat or dog. Huh?

But I'm willing to pull out the big guns if that's what I have to do.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2004 at 9:13AM
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oh yes...I got poisoned once by a flea bomb... it is a neurological toxin... no joke! My doc didn't know what it was, except her mentor worked with gassed vets from the first gulf war! No joke stuff...NEVER BREATHE IT IN! take it from someone who suffered for months....

    Bookmark   March 31, 2004 at 11:01AM
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Daisy's advice is right on. Brewers yeast in the cats food will do the trick. I haven't had fleas on any of my animals since I got rid of my rugs. fleas are around and you could be bringing them in on your shoes. Please don't use that horrible flea stuff on your cats. It can kill them. Bio sopt is just another horrible chemical that has very bad efects on the animal. Please please find another way.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2004 at 3:50AM
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Also get pennyroyal and rue plants to put on your balcony. Apparently help repel fleas.

wow 8 years in wood floors and longer in carpet?????????????? darn

    Bookmark   April 4, 2004 at 9:23PM
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I have posted the answer to this problem in this forum many times, but there is always someone who missed it. I see that Daisy knows about it, but she does not quite have it straight.

Flees as well as any kind of pest only attach themselves to people or pets with nutritional deficiencies, in particular a vitamin B2 deficiency. Brewer's yeast is not likely to be eaten by any pet. It is a byproduct of beermaking and tastes bitter because of the added hops in the beer. You need to by a good tasting nutritional yeast instead. The best one is Torula yeast flakes, because they don't fly like yeast powders. If the animal does not eat the yeast, you can rub it onto the fur, and no pest will come near him, even if they are jumping all around the house.

People need the same treatment, of course, but many North Americans are allergic to yeast, because of they have been raised on yeast bread, whereas Europeans have been raised on sour dough bread. If you are allergic to yeast, you can take the vitamin B2 in a 100 mg tablet. It is also called Riboflavon, and it looks bright orange.

If you are not sure if you are allergic to yeast or not, I can send you a simple reliable allergy test which works for any kind of food. It costs nothing and doesn't hurt. I only send the description out on request.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2005 at 2:27AM
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johnyb(QLD Aust)

Do headlice only attach themselves to people with nutritional deficiencies?


    Bookmark   March 21, 2005 at 3:33AM
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All pests life off blood with nutritional deficiencies, just like garden pests only attach themselves to plants which are grown on soil with mineral deficiencies.

BTW, before you send a message to someone who posts here, be sure that your GW profile has your current email address. I just sent info to a GW member who asked for it, and the email bounced.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2005 at 6:55AM
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johnyb(QLD Aust)

"All pests life off blood with nutritional deficiencies, just like garden pests only attach themselves to plants which are grown on soil with mineral deficiencies."

And where did you get this idea? I've never heard of this before.


    Bookmark   March 28, 2005 at 9:19PM
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I would like to know as well. No animal (human or othewise) is perfectly healthy 100% of the time. Even if we were, we're still all a little different. Mosquitos are attracted to some and not to others and it's not due to any "nutritional deficiency".

Nutritional yeast doesn't just appear out of nowhere in nature for wild cats to ingest to prevent pests. This doesn't mean those cats are nutritionally deficient. Some areas are simply more inclined to have a higher population of fleas or other "pests", therefore chances are increased for anything in their path with blood to become a meal - healty or not.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 4:19AM
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Johny b and violet I have heard that theory many times in holistic vet books and the like. It may or may not be true but the theory is that parasites will attach and feed off a nutritionally deficient animal and while they may hop on to a nutritionally well animal they do not stay. For example..."The most important measure you can take is similar to that with any illness, and that is to stre4ngthen the overall health opf the animal. In general, given the same environment, healthier animals suffer less from fleas. It all comes back to good food, lots of love and minimal stress. Cleanliness is important also, but healthy animals generally stay clean." This is a quote form Homeopathic care for cats and dogsd by Dr. Don Hamilton. He then gives advice on how to control fles using various remedies, oils, herbs, vaccuming, borax etc. a good read. My dogs rarely get fleas even though I live on a large property and have lots of insects. They get a tick occasionally but rarely. I feed them a raw food diet and brewers yeast and oil and other things. They are healthy. Also the rugs can be a problem. I have none. hope this helps

    Bookmark   August 3, 2005 at 11:10AM
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I would disagree with pest only attaching to pets/people with nutritional deficiences. My long hair cat is very healthy and eats a well balanced diet consisting of prey, vegetation and a good kibble.

He got fleas last year and it was the WORST!!! We tried the sprays, we tried the powders, nothing worked. this went on for a month or so so we decided to go to the vet. He prescribed advantix and the problem cleared up in 24 hours. no kidding. no house bombing was necessary. The advantix attracts the fleas to the pet and once they feed they die shortly after. The cat becomes a walking flea killing machine...

Advantix is a bit pricey but well worth it when absolutely nothing else worked.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2005 at 12:11PM
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PurpleRainbow(z8 NW WA)

Traute_Biogardener, you wrote ... but many North Americans are allergic to yeast, because of they have been raised on yeast bread, whereas Europeans have been raised on sour dough bread."

Do you have a recipe for sourdough starter that doesn't contain yeast in one form or another? I thought the yeasts in sourdough were what caused it to rise. People would let their starter sit outside to capture natural yeasts, or so I've read. I've seen recipes calling for beer, but that would actually be a yeast source. You've got my interest and I'd love to give a yeastless sourdough a try.

Borax on the carpet cured a fleafestation for me once, I used borax because I had a cockatiel, the fleas stayed gone for as long as I was there. The cats were gone with my DD when she moved out and I only became aware of the fleas because no other hosts were present, I suppose. I can be in a flea infested area and never know it.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2005 at 10:35PM
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Someone please help, Me and my four children ages 14, 12, 10 and 23months old just got a kitten Sunday Dec. 4. Now before I got the kitten I knew he had some fleas because I ask the owner but she assured me that she would bath the kitten a day before she brought him to my home. Also there were other kittens and two adult cats where the kitten came from. So after about three hours after the kitten had been there I notice fleas and I freaked out and my older three kids also did the same they ran into there rooms and wouldn't come out, we have had this problem before with another kitten about 1 1/2 yrs ago so they know how much of a problem they can be I was still pregnant with my baby at the time. But last night it was one on my baby forehead, so I got the flea off his forehead and went into the bathroom and turn the water on to wash the flea down the drain. The I got the litterbox, kitten food and water bowl and put the kitten out in the cold storage and gave him a rug. I feel soooo bad, I could sleep last night knowing the kitten was out in the cold storage. The lady who gave the kitten told me if I change my mind then to give her a call. But I really want to see if I can get rid of the fleas but also keep the kitten contained to one area because my 23month toddler doesn't know what to do if he see's a flea, my other children do. Some please give me some advice.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2005 at 9:02AM
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First of all why are you freaking out and running out of the room and teaching your kids to do the same over a flea? The lady probably didn't bathe the cat. Bathe the kitten immediately and clean the rug and everything else in the cold storage oin hot water and bleach. Then bathe the kitten every 2 weeks at minimum with a non toxic flea bath and wash evewrything in the cold storage again. Fleas have a 14 day reproductive cycle if you do not keep doing it you will not get rid of the fleas. If you can't take a little flea in your environment without freaking out maybe you shouldn't have a pet. What are you going to do if it has worms? or gets sick? or God Forbid, gets a tick?

    Bookmark   December 7, 2005 at 8:38PM
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What type of non toxic flea bath do you suggest? And am I able to find this in a pet supply store? I have 2 5 week old kittens that have fleas and I need something fast to get rid of them. Can anyone suggest what to purchase to rid these pesky fleas???

    Bookmark   June 2, 2006 at 10:28PM
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All it takes to kill fleas on our cat is soap. I have had 3 vets recommend regular Ivory dishsoap (not Dawn). So thats what I used and it worked. The sink was full of dead fleas. Apparently the soap water suffocates them. This is why some people spray soapy water on their plants to get rid of insects. I then used Frontline Plus Just one dose which is effective for one month to make sure they did not get anymore fleas. And vacuumed once a day with a new bag each time for about a week. The vet also recommended Brewers yeast not just for the fleas but it is full of vitamins and good stuff. In fact most cat food and treats actually have some Brewers Yeast in it. Wal-Mart sells Brewers Yeast in tablet form in a bottle in the pet food aisle next to the cat toys and Catnip. I feed my cats one tablet a day. In two years I have not had to use the Frontline and have had no more fleas. By the way my cats are indoors only so if yours go outdoors I dont know if this would work as good.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2006 at 1:24AM
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I have four big dogs ages 6-11. When we have lived in high flea populated places (Nebraska, North Dakota) we have always resorted to Frontline Plus. Works great and have never had toxic issues while using the proper weight dosage. In eastern Wa I've never had to use any flea products (lived here the majority of the 11 years) and they spend time both in and out, they are older and I'm sure not quite as healthy and have never had a diet of nothing more than Pedigree (well one is on Beneficial Healthy Weight now) and some steak, turkey, and chicken once in awhile. Today I'm more concerned with the Malathion we are fogged with every wed. evening, all season long, for west nile/mosquito prevention. We have never had high pops of mosquitoes but they are fogging never-the-less as a precautionary step.
Let me ask what do you all use for hearworm prevention in high populated mosquito areas known for heartworm? In Nebraska it was always Heartgard Plus which are chewables.


    Bookmark   June 26, 2006 at 8:24PM
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I haven't read any of the comments so I'm sorry if I repeat some things, and this isn't an herbal treatment.
If you give your cats baths with dawn liquid dish soap it kills the fleas, and makes your cats smell nice. if you have carpet or rugs vacuum them everyday, flea eggs live in them and can be vacuumed up easily. All this has worked for me once with my two cats and dog. They all got fleas again though because we moved to a place that had them, so I have to do it all over again. *sighs*

    Bookmark   June 27, 2006 at 2:21PM
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Last year it was "tent catapillars", this year it's fleas. Our cats are going nuts. Years ago I had a Madewell sprayer/fogger and used Tigress Natural Insecticide. This combination was highly effective. Does anyone know where I could get these now?


    Bookmark   July 3, 2006 at 11:54AM
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the dawn does work, but how do you keep them off of YOU???

i'm highly allergic to any and all insect bites and within 20 minutes, my legs are all welted and look horrible (stupid fleas... we didn't have a problem with them until a couple of weeks after my stepson's graduation party... now i can't seem to get rid of them no matter what i do!)

we have 5 cats (oldest is 2, then one is a year and a half old, the youngest three are just over a year old) and they're INFESTED. I tried the OTC stuff but it doesn't work. when the fleas bite, it actually HURTS me... like someone's jabbing in a needle. I know they're fleas from past experience and i drowned a couple in a bottle with some tap water and dawn antibacterial dish soap. the only thing that seems to be keeping them down out of the couches at all is the febreeze antimicrobial spray... HELP!!!!!!!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2006 at 3:25AM
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diatomaceous earth. you can rub it onh the animal and puti it in the cracks and crevices of the floor and sofa etc. it kills soft bodied insects as they walk over it. go to petmedecinechest.com they have a product called worn out which contains the de.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2006 at 10:38AM
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I have a feral cat that we got fixed, shot, etc. However, he is allergic to fleas, and now that the initial treatment has worn off, his fur is getting patchy again. I've been putting nutritional yeast on his food, but it's not working. Tried pulverizing Capstar and hiding it in canned food, but he wouldn't eat it. Any other hints?

    Bookmark   August 5, 2006 at 12:54AM
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what was the initial treatment?

    Bookmark   August 5, 2006 at 1:13AM
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I have been finding fleas in my apt. I do not have pets. There are alot of stray cats around my apartment though so could we be picking these up from outside? I dont know anything about them because i have never dealt with them. Most of the info i find online has to do with having pets. I was told by a friend that they like to live in bark and i have a lot of bark outside of my apt but i never had this problem last year and i havent found anything to back them up on that theory. I just want to get rid of them i dont have pets because i live in a small place and dont wanna deal with this kind of stuff. If they dont have an animal to feed off of will they die off?? Help me i am tired of finding them and them trying to bite me!!!!

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 5:10PM
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I have 13 little baby kittens and they have fleas, I have been combing them with a LICE comb because the flea combs teeth were too far apart for the baby kittens, I quickly dunk the comb in a bowl of warm water, they drown, but I don't have time for anything else but combing baby kittens. HHHEEELLLPPP

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 1:07PM
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Lately I've also had a problem with fleas. I have 2 dogs, and cats. The fleas seems really only to be bothering the dogs though. I've tried Frontline and Advantage through the years and my results were mixed. This year I'm trying brewers yeast for everyone. My two cats love these tablets, they think they're cat treats. For my 21yr old cat, she gets the tablets (now in powder form) in her food. I have also read that garlic tablets for the dogs (not the cats) will help. The yeast and garlic make their blood unattractive to the fleas. I'm also trying B-1 for the dogs. This is supposed to help aid in repelling pests, they say that it makes the animals emit a odor that humans can't smell, but pests hate it. I rather try the natural route first before I use any more chemicals.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2007 at 10:12AM
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