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Fleas are the most annoying and common types of pests. They cause discomfort to our cats, dogs, and even us sometimes. To make matters even worse, there are around 2 000 different types of fleas that exist around the world. Different species prefer to feed on different types of pets. Here are the most common types of fleas that you may find feeding off of your pet.
- Cat Fleas
This is the most common type of flea that can be found on both cats and dogs alike. The domestic cat flea also goes by the name Ctenocephalides felis. The cat flea selects dogs, humans, and cats as its preferred victims.
- Dog Fleas
Despite its name, the god flea will not just stick to dogs as its victims, but it can also be a problem for humans, cats, and other animals. The dog flea is scientifically known as Ctenocephalides canis, and can also be found on wild animals like raccoons, opossums, and livestock. Cat and dog fleas both carry the common tapeworm parasite that can affect cats, dogs, and humans alike.
- Oriental Rat Flea
The scientific name of the oriental rat flea is Zenopsylla Cheopsis. These fleas feed off of cats and dogs when their preferred meal is not available – rats. They carry the bubonic plague which can be deadly and often difficult to diagnose. They can feed off of cats, dogs, and humans when rats are not available.
- Tropical Hen Flea
The tropical hen flea is also known as the sticktight flea. Its scientific name is Echidnophaga Gallinacea. The sticktight flea can make a meal of anything in its vicinity. It usually prefers poultry but can also feed on cats, dogs, and humans.
- Rabbit Flea
Also known as the Spillopsylus Cuniculi, it prefers wild and domestic rabbits. If there are no rabbits for it to feed on, it jumps on to dogs and cats as a source of sustenance. They can be found feeding on the ears of cats and dogs often causing papules and crusts – especially in the area around the edges of the ears.
- Human Flea
These fleas target humans as their preferred hosts. Also known as the Pulex irritans and the Pulex simulans. Although their preferred hosts are humans, they will also feed on cats, pigs, and dogs when humans are not available. They can usually be found on wild animals mainly from the canine family and also dogs and cats in particular. The Pulex irritans (human flea) and the Pulex simulans (false human flea) are technically two different species but they are usually found together as they usually prefer the same hosts.