How to Get Rid of Fleas in the Yard: Comprehensive Guide

What’s the best way to get rid of fleas in the yard? Many people ask this question, and there are many answers. One popular answer is to use a natural remedy such as applying Diatomaceous earth or using garlic oil. Other people rely on traditional chemical treatments like pesticide sprays and foggers. The problem with these methods is that they don’t work for all situations and can make things worse by encouraging resistance among some pests, destroying beneficial insects, contaminating water sources, or harming pets. There are plenty of other ways you could try out to get rid of fleas in the yard.

Why Should I Treat My Yard for Fleas?

As a dog owner, you may be asking yourself why it is necessary to treat your yard for fleas. The truth is that if you want to keep your pets healthy and comfortable, the environment they’re living in should also remain safe from pests such as fleas. Moreover, fleas are not only harmful to home animals – dogs and cats, but can also greatly annoy people by biting them painfully.

In this post, we’ll be teaching you how to treat your yard for fleas.

What are the Symptoms of Flea Infestations in Your Yard?

Information About FleaThe first thing you need to do is determine if you have a flea problem. Here are some symptoms that may indicate the presence of these blood-sucking pests:

  • Fleas can be found on pets, but they also live in your yard and garden areas. If your pet has developed an allergic reaction or skin condition, it could be because of fleas living around its home (your house).
  • Fleas only live in warm-blooded animals, so you can detect fleas in your yard by the constant scratching or restlessness of your pets.
  • It is possible to see insects moving between the hairs of your pet – these could be fleas.
  • If you aren’t sure, just put on a pair of white socks and you will easily see fleas because of their bright color.

How do I know if my yard has fleas? Flea dirt (larvae) is the easiest way to tell if your yard has a high population of these pests. You can find little black spots on grass blades where larvae have burrowed into the ground after hatching from eggs laid by adult females. If you see lots of dark specks that look like pepper scattered around your garden or lawn area, that’s probably another sign there are tons of larva living within this soil environment.

How Long Does an Outdoor Flea Infestation Last?

Flea removal is not a one-time task. Due to a flea’s life cycle, this process could take weeks or even months. When a female flea feeds on a host for the first time, her life cycle begins. Within 18 months, she can lay up to 50 eggs per day. Unfortunately for you and your pets, once these hatches about 48 hours later they are ready to feed on their first host – usually a rodent or another animal in the yard. This is where the cycle begins again. During this time, outdoor populations of fleas could become overwhelming if not treated properly!

Because fleas have to feed on a host before they become fully grown, flea infestations in your yard can last for several months while the fleas go through their life cycle. Since female fleas lay eggs when they feed, the cycle can easily continue to repeat itself. This is why it’s so important to treat and prevent fleas in your yard before you notice a problem.

Once inside the home, females will begin to look for their first meal of blood – whether that be from you or one of your pets. Once they’ve had their fill, they’ll wander off on their separate ways looking for an area where she can lay some eggs. This usually happens close to where she found her last host (since this is likely where more food sources are).

If you have many animals coming into your house throughout the day then this process could happen several times over again with different female adult fleas! Even worse than having multiple bites all over your body each night would be knowing that these parasites were multiplying.

Information About Fleas

It will be easier to prevent fleas and to kill them if you understand more about them. Getting to know your opponent’s strengths and weaknesses is the first step to attacking them.

The first thing to know about fleas is that they are a kind of parasite. This means that their life cycle depends on living off the blood of other creatures, namely us and our pets. For this reason, pet owners need to treat both their cats and dogs if fleas have been noticed around the house or in the yard.

Flea larvae live only in dark places where there isn’t much air circulation so carpets, bedding, furniture cushions tend to be very appealing as breeding grounds because they provide such an environment along with the warmth from your home heating.

Flea infestations of your pet and home


Interesting Facts About Fleas

    1. Fleas are tiny and wingless. All parasites have the same body structure. The size of the flea is 3-5 mm, the body is flattened, brown. The body consists of three compartments – head, abdomen, thorax. Fleas have a small flat bodies. Originally, the parasites had wings, but over time they fell away because they were unnecessary. This is because the animals have a thick coat, from which it is impossible to fly off.
    2. Fleas can jump as high as one foot. Flea’s hind legs are long – if they are stretched out, they will be larger than the whole body of the parasite. A flea’s jump is similar to the action of a spring. In a quiet state, the parasite folds its legs, and in case of danger, they are extended like a spring, allowing the parasite to “fly away” at a distance of up to 1 meter.
    3. There are air cavities in the hind legs of the parasite. When jumping, the parasite directs air there to provide cushioning for the landing.
    4. The flea has a high speed of reaction to danger due to the presence of special organs on its abdomen. Flea ctenidia detect the slightest fluctuations in the air.
    5. Fleas can eat up to 15 times their body weight a day while feeding on blood.
    6. Fleas feed on blood by biting the host and injecting poisonous secretions into the blood. In general, the parasites can feed on any blood, but they prefer their species of animals.
    7. Fleas can transmit parasitic tapeworms to dogs and other diseases to humans and cats.
    8. Insects were one of the main sources of plague spreading. The plague flea moved between hosts with impunity, infecting humans and animals.
    9. Аccording to Wikipedia over 2,500 species of fleas exist.
    10. Cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis) and dog fleas (Ctenocephalides canis) are the most likely types to be found on animals, in yards, and in homes. The fleas will attack pets, humans, and wild animals.
    11. The flea season lasts all year long.
    12. All parasites are divided into several species: insects that parasitize warm-blooded animals (dogs, cats, fleas of the gopher tortoise, etc.); avian fleas (chicken, pigeon fleas); insects that parasitize humans.

An Overview of Flea Life Cycle

Fleas are fully metamorphosed insects. The life cycle consists of 4 stages: egg, larva, pupa, and imago (adult insect). To lay eggs, the female needs repeated feeding. Each day, the female flea lays 1 to 15 eggs, which she “shoots” under “pressure” so that the eggs do not remain on the host’s fur, but fall to the ground. Eggs are small, up to 1 mm in length, most often white, though some species have black eggs.

A whitish, worm-like, legless, very motile larva hatches from the egg, which in no way resembles an adult insect. This is a feature of all arthropods with a complete transformation cycle. The larva feeds on bloody flea feces, various organic debris, molts three times until it becomes a pupa. The pupa is immobile, in a silk cocoon, from which the adult insect (imago) eventually emerges. Depending on the temperature, the flea’s entire development cycle can last from 14 days to a year or more. Under natural conditions, fleas live 1 to 3 months and up to 5 years in the laboratory. Fleas can survive starvation for up to 1 year.

Flea Home Remedies

The only reason fleas are considered pests is because they bite. Flea bites on humans are quite rare. Most often they bite your cats and dogs, as they won’t be as painful as wasp bites. The bite area will experience itching and swelling as with any insect bite.

If your pet experiences a bite from a flea, you need to take it immediately to the vet. This is because there are several diseases that cats and dogs can contract when bitten by a parasite like fleas. The American Veterinary Medical Association reports that parasites such as ticks and mosquitoes also spread illnesses in both pets and humans. These include Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, heartworm disease, cat scratch fever, West Nile virus (WNV), encephalitis, malaria among other serious health conditions.

If people have an allergic reaction or they come into contact with these potentially deadly parasitic infestations, even more problems occur for them later on down the road.

Fortunately, there are a few homemade flea remedies that can help you get rid of fleas and prevent them from returning. For example, you can try using Borax and Diatomaceous Earth to kill fleas in the yard.

Boric Acid

Boric Acid (borax) is a naturally occurring mineral that contains borate ions while Diatomaceous earth (DE) is made up of microscopic shells containing silica which are harmful to insects but not mammals.

Borax is a naturally occurring compound that effectively kills fleas and is generally non-toxic to bees and aquatic animals. However, it can be toxic to plants, so it needs to be applied with caution. A powder form of boric acid can be applied to affected areas. It will require frequent application.

Diatomaceous Earth

Adult fleas may begin to die as quickly as four hours after contact with Diatomaceous earth. The particles may kill some flea larvae as well, but it is not effective against flea eggs or pupae.

Diatomaceous EarthDiatomaceous earth is made from the fossils of freshwater organisms known as diatoms. The microscopic remains have sharp edges, and when a flea comes in contact with the powder it becomes cut up by the jagged particles. Diatomaceous earth can be purchased through garden supply stores or online retailers such as Amazon.

Natural products like Diatomaceous Earth can be used both indoors and outdoors without harming pets or humans. This is one of the few remedies that work outside too!

Natural Diatomaceous earth powder makes an excellent yard spray and will kill any bugs that come into contact with it, including fleas on dogs or cats when they walk across treated areas of grass. Combining these two ingredients means double trouble for fleas because both minerals will cause dehydration leading to the death of adult fleas and larvae respectively.

Lemon Juice

You can also use lemon juice mixed with water or soap solution to get rid of any existing pests outside your house since they hate the citrus scent produced by lemons. You may need to apply this spray at least thrice every week if it rains frequently as rainwater washes away. Lemon can be used in many different areas of the home, but in addition to being a good way to treat wasp bites, it’s also a great natural home remedy for fleas.

Dish Soap

A homemade flea remedy involves making a flea trap out of dish soap and water.  Mix a few drops of dish soap with water and fill the jar about halfway. Place this trap near your pets’ bedding or anywhere you have noticed these pests foraging for food.


If you want to kill fleas outside without using chemicals, consider making an insecticidal spray from garlic cloves which can be as effective as commercial products but safe enough to use around small children and pets. All you need is crushed garlic cloves, vegetable oil, liquid dish soap, water, and cheesecloth/muslin bag to create a 25% concentration spray that will not only get rid of adult insects through suffocation but also prevent further infestation because once they come into contact with it; eggs laid by adults hatch anymore.

Herbal Flea Spray

For rapid flea removal at home, use an herbal flea spray made from natural products that can be found around your home. This natural flea remedy is safe for pets and children.

Neem Oil

Neem seed extract can also be made into a mist you can spray on your home, outdoor area, or pet. It contains azadirachtin, which can be used to kill fleas for up to two weeks. If so we recommend applying neem oil around your foundation and baseboards inside your house every day until the problem is gone.

If you have pets, especially cats or dogs, use caution when applying neem oil around them because it can cause vomiting if ingested. You may want to apply this treatment at night after they are inside for the day so that they don’t wander.

Baking Soda

One of the best ways to get rid of fleas at home is to vacuum. This removes fleas from carpet fibers and furniture, which helps you get rid of fleas. Baking soda can be used to increase the effectiveness of this flea remedy. To use, lay down baking soda along with carpets and furniture, take a hard brush, and rub it into the fabric.


The combination of salt and vacuuming is a natural flea home remedy similar to baking soda. Salt acts as a dehydration agent, which helps get rid of adult fleas. Salt also repels the fleas. When combined with a good vacuum, salt can work as an effective home remedy for ridding your yard of adult fleas and their eggs. Salt works by dehydrating the insects, making them weaker and very susceptible to machines that suck moisture out of whatever they come into contact within this case.

Rosemary Oil

Another option would be a natural flea spray made from ingredients found in your kitchen cupboard. You can also add rosemary oil extract for added power against ticks, which are commonly found in yards as well. That being said, just remember not all homemade solutions are created equal so keep this in mind.

Beneficial Nematodes – Getting Rid of Fleas in the Yard Naturally

Nematodes are an excellent solution for killing fleas in the yard naturally. A beneficial nematode is a tiny worm that feeds on flea eggs and larvae. These worms are safe for humans, pets, gardens, and foliage.

The first step is to water your yard thoroughly. This will help the nematodes travel through the soil more quickly and reach their target. Next, you should apply a beneficial nematode product from Amazon or you can also purchase them locally.

Where Do Fleas Live in Your House?

When the fleas reproduce, more fleas can infest your private home. They tend to cover bedding, fixtures, and ground cracks. Fleas also like to stay on an animal’s underbelly, to be able to effortlessly be transferred to your carpet when your pet lies down. Fleas love to live in the darkest, warmest areas of the house. They like under furniture or behind baseboards where it’s hard for humans to see them (and thus, spray chemicals). If you want to get rid of fleas inside your home, be sure that all cracks and crevices are treated with non-toxic boric acid powder.

A few pests can even make their way into your home via the air. If you don’t have an air conditioner, they may sneak inside and hide in the cooling unit. To find the culprit, look for the telltale signs: eggs, larvae, and adult fleas. Most of these pests are easily eradicated with the right pest control treatments. Don’t forget that most flea and tick treatments are safe for pets and kids. You just need to make sure your pet doesn’t eat the insecticide.

Able to effortlessly be transferred to your carpet when your pet lies down, so keep Floof out of these areas if possible, or at least clean them with an outdoor vacuum cleaner afterward. You’ll find more fleas in carpeting than in the walls or furniture, but they’re still present around windows and doors due to their ability to ooze through tiny cracks and holes – especially ones that lead into unoccupied rooms like attics or basements where is no traffic for hundreds of years.

Where Do Fleas Live Outside?

If you’re seeing fleas in your home, then it’s likely that they’ve spread to the yard as well. That means there are a few things that should be done outside of the house as well. It will take time and patience to bring those pesky bugs under control, but with some diligence, you can get rid of them.

Where do fleas live outside? Fleas thrive in many climates but prefer moist, humid, and shady areas. They love to live in woodpiles and tall grass. They also love to hide in flower beds, under mulch and shrubs.

How Long Do Fleas Stay in Your House?

The flea may live for up to 100 days if left undisturbed without a blood meal, or around two months in general on an adult human body. After feeding, the female lays hundreds of eggs within 36-48 hours and they don’t lay their eggs beforehand; they do so immediately after taking their first blood meal.

Thus, even in an empty house, fleas can live for quite a long time.

Fleas tend to breed in large numbers where human hosts are abundant. In such circumstances, a person can expect fleas to hatch within about one to four weeks, depending on the season and the locale. When human blood is plentiful, fleas multiply rapidly, but when food is scarce, they will die off more quickly. Fleas are not true parasites; they eat the blood of their hosts and live on the resulting protein.

Do Fleas Live Under Houses?

Pets usually carry fleas into the house, but they can also be transported by clothing, and some have even been seen to enter the house by themselves. Laminate, hardwood floors, and tile floors are also no protection; fleas can live in the cracks and around the edges. Under your house, you can find fleas in your basement, crawl space, or dark places with moisture.

Step-by-step Guide on How to Get Rid of Fleas in the Yard

So what should you do if you have fleas in your yard? Follow these simple step-by-step instructions to get rid of fleas quickly and completely.

1. Clean Your Yard

You can prevent fleas from entering your home and yard by creating a natural barrier. By clearing your yard of brush, plantings, leaves, and other trash, you will prevent fleas from hiding and laying eggs.

2. Keep Your Lawn Mowed

If you want to prevent fleas from breeding on your lawn, ensure that their natural predators thrive. Too-long grass gives fleas an easy and ideal hiding spot, while too-short grass (less than two inches) keeps spiders and ants away, both of which feed on fleas.

Keep your lawn mowed

As a bonus, regularly mowing your lawn will encourage the growth of healthy new grass and discourage weeds.

3. Be Aware of Moisture

Fleas thrive when there is moisture around. Therefore, you should avoid overwatering your plants and grass. Additionally, you should avoid leaving standing water in the yard. If there is a pet bowl with water left for your cat or dog, make sure to dump out the old water and refill it every day. In addition to these steps, you can also leave dishes of white vinegar sitting around for about two weeks. The acidity from the vinegar will kill fleas before they even have a chance to breed.

4. Let the Sun Shine

Darkness is another thing fleas love. By trimming shrubs and trees you provide your yard with more sunlight to help deter fleas. Also, the more sunlight you let in, the less moisture there is. Moisture can attract deers and other wildlife that carry fleas into your yard; not good.

5. Treat Your Lawn

To rid your lawn of fleas, use a specially formulated flea spray treatment. Apply the treatment to your lawn, making sure it penetrates about a quarter of an inch into the soil. Treating your lawn is important because fleas can live in between grass blades and then quickly spread back onto your pets when they return from being outside. You should treat your yard at least once or twice monthly during the warmer months when flea activity is high, depending on how often you have problems with outdoor pests in general in your area.

Treat Your Lawn

You can also read our review about the best flea killer for your yard

6. Get Rid of Wild Animals

Use traps to keep squirrels, skunks, rabbits, and other animals out of your yard. Avoid birdseed, avoid feeding birds, and try to make your yard less attractive to them. This will help keep the number of fleas down.

7. Mulch With Cedar

Mulch your flower beds with cedar. Cedar is a natural insect repellant and will assist with warding them off. The best type of mulching material to use in the yard for flea prevention is one that has been treated with cedar oil or chips, but it’s preferable if they’re untreated. These can be found at any nursery or home improvement store such as Home Depot.

8. Clean Your Home and Pets

Treat your house with a flea treatment after you vacuum and then groom and bathe your pets with flea shampoos and conditioners to get rid of any fleas that make their way inside. This will eliminate any fleas that may have made their way inside from the outside.

Flea Control for the Yard

Using Outdoor Pesticides

A liquid form of pesticide (sometimes referred to as a “concentrate”) is available as well as spreadable granules. These pesticides are meant to be mixed with water and sprayed over the yard.

Be sure you carefully follow all of the directions on insecticide labels, including warnings about exposing children or pets to treated areas. Closely monitor your pet for signs of poisoning if they roam in a recently-treated yard for any length of time after treatment has been completed.

Insecticides come in different formulations that should be applied at specific times throughout the year based on local climate conditions: cool-season grasses need treatments starting around September, while warm-season grasses may require applications as early as February depending upon location. Insecticides can also have peak activity periods where maximum results will occur; this is usually during springtime when larvae are beginning their development stages.

You can purchase yard sprays that contain insecticides. These products are very effective, but you need to follow the instructions with regards to how often it is safe for pets or children to re-enter your home after treatment has been done.

Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs)

As opposed to pesticides, insect growth regulators (IGRs) do not destroy existing flea infestations on impact; however, in the long run, IGRs are very effective for preventing further infestations. IGRs mimic the effect of juvenile hormones in insects, which prevent them from maturing and reproducing. This is why IGRs are so effective at getting rid of fleas: they inhibit reproduction by preventing larvae from growing into adults. The two most common types of insect growth regulators used for killing fleas include methoprene and pyriproxyfen. Both chemicals can be found in commercial products that homeowners may apply to their yards or gardens without a pesticide applicator license.

Correct Lawn Maintenance

Keep your lawn regularly mowed to avoid fleas (and other pests) in your yard. Fleas are attracted to long grass, fallen leaves, and thatch. Using regular lawn mowing and raking can get rid of fleas that are already in your yard. Regular mowing of the lawn is important because it ensures that there are no places for fleas to hide. Raking up leaves and fallen twigs, branches, etc., can reduce the number of flea eggs in your yard.


The bottom line is that pest control is very important. It can help to keep your family safe and healthy by preventing the spread of diseases, as well as making sure you have a pleasant home environment. Use natural, organic solutions whenever possible to get rid of fleas in the yard without harming pets because they are less toxic for humans and pets alike. Remember – prevention is key when looking at any type of pest control strategy so be proactive with what you do today to protect tomorrow!

FAQs About Fleas

  • Can you kill fleas with Dawn Dish Soap?
    No. Dawn dish soap is not an effective flea killer, and the use of it will likely cause more harm than good. Dawn can be harmful to pets that ingest it or come into physical contact with it (their eyes may become irritated). Furthermore, its sudsing action does nothing to drown a nest of fleas.
  • How do I get rid of fleas in the yard?
    The most important part is to kill the adult stage of this insect before they can reproduce and lay more eggs. This will make it much easier for you to prevent future infestations.
  • What are the best home remedies for killing fleas?
    There is no way you can use a mixture of soap, water, dish-washing liquid, or vinegar to kill all those pesky insects in your yard.There's only one surefire solution: pesticides. Professional exterminators will have the most effective chemicals on hand, as well as professional strength insecticides that won’t harm people or pets if used correctly – they typically require more than just spraying an area once or twice; it might take several treatments over time before pests go away completely and/or new ones stop appearing (flea eggs can lie dormant until they hatch).
  • What do fleas hate the most?
    The strong sense of smell that fleas have makes them easy to detect food sources. Thus, you can gain an advantage by choosing scents they dislike, such as cedarwood, mint, vinegar, clove oil, citrus, DEET, lemongrass oil, and rosemary oil.
  • Can you use salt to kill fleas?
    While salt can kill fleas on contact, it is not a good idea to use it as a treatment. Salt will irritate the skin of humans and pets (especially cats) if they walk across wet salt or lick their fur after exposure to salt.
  • Is cedar oil safe around pets and humans when used as a pest repellent?
    There is no risk associated with cedar oil for pets and people, including newborns and nursing mothers.
  • Is diatomaceous earth (DE) good for preventing fleas?
    Diatomaceous earth may cause adult fleas to die within a few hours after contact with the particles. Some flea larvae may be killed, but the powder does not work on flea eggs or pupae.
  • Are flea collars safe?
    No, flea collars are not safe. They have been shown to the toxic for cats and dogs alike.
  • Are there any natural flea treatments that work?
    Yes! Many effective herbal remedies will naturally get rid of fleas in your yard without using harmful chemicals or pesticides which can be dangerous for children, pets, and other animals who may come into contact with them. These solutions also tend to cost less than pest control services provided by a professional exterminator service as well as chemical sprays people try at home on their own.
  • How do you make homemade flea spray?
    Diluting vinegar with water is the easiest way to create your flea spray. Some people recommend mixing vinegar with water in equal amounts. Others recommend mixing one part vinegar with three parts water. It's up to you which you choose. The best time of day to apply your homemade flea spray is after sundown when outdoor pests are less active and easier to target with spray. Reapply every few days as needed to kill a new adult.
  • What temperature will kill fleas?
    Fleas are unable to survive in temperatures above 95 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that if you live in a climate where it frequently gets very hot during the summer months, fleas will not be able to survive your yard's high temperature and die off on their own over time.
  • Will cold kill fleas?
    Fleas do not die in the winter due to cold. Both the immature and adult stages can survive through extreme temperatures.
  • Can I drown fleas?
    The short answer is no. Fleas can't breathe underwater and will die from drowning, but it would be very difficult to drown a flea in your yard if you had an infestation of them because they are so small.
  • Does lime kill fleas in the yard?
    Lime does not kill fleas. Lime is used to raise the pH of your yard, which makes it unfavorable for flea larvae and pupae to survive. Most people will recommend using lime for this purpose because it's easier to find at your local hardware store and is less potentially hazardous than dumping undiluted.
  • Does vinegar kill fleas in the yard?
    No, vinegar does not kill fleas. However, it can be an effective treatment to use in conjunction with other methods of killing the adult stage of a flea infestation if you have one.
  • What home remedy kills fleas in the yard?
    Several different home remedies can be used to kill adult fleas in your yard. One of the most common ones is dish soap, but you'll have better results if it's combined with diatomaceous earth or boric acid. You should also avoid using salt for this purpose because many types will either attract water or absorb moisture.
  • What can I spray in my yard to kill fleas and ticks?
    The best treatment for killing fleas and ticks is to use a product with the active ingredient fipronil. Fipronil kills adult parasites, not eggs or larvae, so it must be reapplied every 30 days.
  • When to call a professional exterminator to treat fleas in your yard?
    If you still have problems after treating your yard for fleas, it is time to call an exterminator.
  • List of Sources

    1. Merchant M., Robinson J. Controlling Fleas. Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.
    2. Potter, M. F. Flea Control and Prevention. ENTOMOLOGY at the University of Kentucky.
    3. Shetlar, D. J., Andon, J. E. Fleas. Ohio State University Extension.
    Franklin Jones
    I'm Franklin Jones, the guy behind Here’s where I write all the DIY pest prevention, removal and extermination tricks.