The use of flea fumigation sprays represents just one aspect of an effective flea control program. Fumigation effectively kills fleas, eggs, and larvae that are already in the home, but it is not effective when affected pets have not been treated. Additionally, while fumigation will kill most fleas in a home, new fleas can be carried in on pet hair and clothing of people who have walked through a flea–infested yard.
Fumigation involves using cans of flea killer to fill a home with pesticide and kill any fleas present in carpets, on furniture, and in any hiding places that are exposed to air. Either a professional pesticide expert or a homeowner can fumigate for fleas. Sprays are available at many major grocery stores, pet stores, and home improvement stores for a reasonable price.
The most effective fumigation sprays will kill fleas at all life stages, not just adults. To effectively remove fleas from the home, it's best for the homeowner to vacuum carpets and floors thoroughly first, especially under furniture and along baseboards or crevices where fleas like to hide. The vacuum bag should be emptied outside the house or sealed before disposal. Some flea experts suggest freezing the vacuum bags for several days before throwing them away to kill the fleas inside.
Before fumigating, all exterior doors and windows must be firmly closed, and all toothbrushes, food, and eating utensils should be sealed up or removed from the home to prevent them from being contaminated with pesticide. All people and pets must leave the home for the duration of the treatment and for at least several hours afterward. After the fumigation is complete, the home should be aired out for several hours to clear the air of lingering pesticide. It may be necessary to wash residue off kitchen counters and anything that will come into contact with food.
Around the same time that a home is being fumigated, pet owners should treat the affected pets as well. This can be done by taking the pet to a veterinarian for a flea shampoo or treating the pet with an oral or topical dose of a flea-control product. Many flea control products are formulated to protect against fleas for 30 days per dose, and many pet owners will need to use these products monthly for life to effectively protect against future infestations, especially if the pet goes outside frequently.