Adult fleas are about an eighth of an inch long. They’re reddish-brown and very thin. It’s hard to really see what they look like without a microscope, but they do have big back legs. They can jump, by some measurements, upward and outward at least 12 inches in a single leap. And one estimation finds that for every adult flea found on your pet, there are at least 100 immature ones hanging around.
Humans and their pets have lived in conflict with fleas for hundreds of years. Feeding exclusively on warm blood, fleas torment animals with their bites, and they are not overly particular about whose blood they drink. While different species of the insect are associated with different mammal hosts (mainly cats, dogs, and rats), they are all just as happy to feast on humans when a dog or cat isn’t in reach. Unfortunately for residents of Utah, fleas thrive in a warm climate. Consequently, many pet owners—and their neighbors—suffer from flea infestations, especially in the spring and summer months.
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