I should’ve figured otherwise…
Prior to leaving on our 2-week vacation (which we just finished up), I had a strong suspicion that fleas were becoming a problem. Perhaps it was the incessant itching and scratching of the cats and dogs… Or the dead give-away: I saw a bunch of the little bastards crawling on the dogs upon inspecting them. With a week to go before heading to Ohio and Texas for a little break, we had doused the animals, put that liquid flea treatment between their shoulder blades, vacuumed the floors and put down that anti-flea powder all over them. Problem solved.
I (and my animals) have never had a flea problem – except for when it comes to the Southeast; go figure. You see, back when it was just me and the scraggly cat, I remember she caught a pretty bad case of fleas down yonder in ‘Sippi. Back then, a little consistent vacuuming and a flea-collar did the trick. Other than life in the Southeast, Colorado, Ohio and New Mexico never had us at FleaCon 5.
Over the span of our 2-week vacation, I didn’t see one flea on the animals and the scratching had returned to normal levels… good indications that we had eradicated the fleas on the pets. As we pulled in the driveway, I figured those that had found refuge in the carpet would’ve met the same fate. They had 2 weeks to starve and die for crying out loud! Just in case though, I left all animals in the car as I went into the house to test the waters. Within 30 seconds of entering the house, I looked down at my bare legs and was speechless: there were at least 6 of the bastards crawling around between my ankles and knees!
I should’ve figured otherwise. They did have 2 weeks to starve… and multiply… and they were damn hungry. I immediately sent Pam to the store (with the animals) to buy as many bug-bombs as possible. In the 10 minutes she was gone, I decided to troll each room to see where the concentrations were. I quickly came to the conclusion that I had no conclusion: the bastards were everywhere! I was surrounded! I seriously could look down and watch multiple black spots hopping around the carpet making their way over to my legs. This was a C-list horror flick or something.
Once they made contact, the only thing I could think of doing was picking them off and throwing them in the toilet to drown. So as I trolled, I would harvest a handful (usually about 4-5) and swing by the bathroom to deposit what I caught before trolling for more. Reinforcements had arrived just in time with the bug bombs. As I called the friendly retreat, I checked one last time in the toilet and was amazed at the amount of fleas I had amassed in just 10 minutes. A quick picture for analysis is below – keep in mind every one of those fleas had landed on me; obviously, there was no time to admire my handy work with the voice in my head yelling “Get Out!!! Get Out Now!!!” (it’s funny how it had a bad German accent).
Mouse over for a close-up… also, get your mind out of the gutter: that’s my leg hair that I ripped out when I picked them off, not pubes.
With that, we began our scorched-earth retreat from the house. The bug bombs had been blown.
The problem with this is we got home last night at 7:30 PM. Bombs were initiated at 8:00 PM. There was a 2+30 turn-around time to let the dust settle and air the place out until we could get some BDA. In the meantime, Pam and I ate some Chinese take-out in the garage and tried to find ways to stall the boredom. By 11:00 PM, we were vacuuming every nook and cranny in the house… twice. It was after midnight by the time the house was cleaned up, new sheets were put on the bed and I finally got some sleep. Only to wake up at 6:00 AM this morning for work… suck.
The war is on though: 6 more bug bombs are on the way along with bags of flea killer for the backyard. There won’t be a flea left standing within 30 yards of our property in about 2-3 more weeks.