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What's Eating Me? Bedbugs and Other Creatures in Your Bedroom


Fending off Fleas
Fleas don't just feed on Fido. If they're hungry enough, you'll do.
Fleas don't just feed on Fido. If they're hungry enough, you'll do.
Dorling Kindersley/The Agency Collection/Getty Images

As if two blood-sucking bugs weren't enough to disturb your slumber, if you have pets, you'll have to watch out for fleas, too. These tiny parasites prefer your four-footed, furry friends, but if they're hungry enough and you're handy, they'll dine on you, too. Fleas can go months without a meal in your carpeting and bedding, and if you can see fleas on your pet, they're only the tip of the buggy iceberg. About 5 percent of the fleas in your home are adults hopping around the family mutt. The other 95 percent are distributed among flea eggs, larvae and pupae, the other three parts of a flea's life cycle.

Like mosquitoes, fleas can also carry nasty diseases like Bubonic plague and typhus. Fleas are typically easier to get rid of than bedbugs, but you may have to employ flea growth and development inhibiters or pesticides to do it. There are also effective flea repellents on the market, like those containing DEET that will make you and yours less appealing to fleas in the first place.


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