An official website of the United States government.

This is not the current EPA website. To navigate to the current EPA website, please go to This website is historical material reflecting the EPA website as it existed on January 19, 2021. This website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work. More information »

Controlling Fleas and Ticks Around Your Home

The following tips may help to prevent, reduce or eliminate flea infestations:

  • Vacuum every day to remove eggs, larvae and adults; this is the best method for initial control of a flea infestation.
    • Be sure to vacuum the following areas: carpets, cushioned furniture, cracks and crevices on floors, along baseboards and the basement.
  • Steam clean carpets: the hot steam and soap can kill fleas in all stages of the life cycle.
    • Pay particular attention to areas where pets sleep.
  • Wash all pet bedding and family bedding on which pets lie in hot, soapy water every two to three weeks.
    • If an infestation is severe, discard old pet bedding and replace it with fresh, clean material.
  • Use a flea comb to suppress adult fleas. Hair can pass through the comb's teeth, but not the fleas, removing fleas as well as flea feces and dried blood.
    • Especially comb the neck and tail areas, which is where the most fleas congregate.
    • Deposit fleas in hot soapy water to kill them.
  • Consider allowing your pets to stay indoors as much as possible, which reduces their chance of being bitten by tick and fleas.
  • Modify your landscape to create tick safe zones

Related Links