Do Cat Fleas Bite Humans?


Do Cat Fleas Bite Humans

Cat fleas or Ctenocephalides felis are one of the most common flea species after dog fleas. Cat fleas can bite humans, just as they would bite a cat. But if you are wondering whether cat fleas live on humans, the answer is 'no'. They do bite us but cannot dwell on our bodies. This is because they cannot complete their life cycle on our bodies and tend to die off.

There are 5 types of fleas – Xenopsylla cheopis (rat flea), Echidnophaga gallinacean (hen flea), Ctenocephalides canis (dog fleas), Ctenocephalides felis (cat flea) and Pulex irritans which are known as human fleas. Pulex irritans prefer human blood but because of hygienic practices these human fleas are no longer common in today’s living quarters. Humans though are not totally free from flea bites as the types of fleas that infest household pets also feed on human blood. There are cat fleas and there are dog fleas. Cat fleas though are more prevalent as it was known that the types of fleas that commonly infest dogs are cat fleas. In a household with dog and cat pets it is highly probable that both animals will be infested with cat fleas. Cat fleas will not thrive on humans but they will certainly feed on human blood. Cat fleas are known to bite humans!

Can Cat Fleas Get Transferred to Humans?

Cat fleas can be transferred to humans who handle flea infested cats. Flea bites on humans appear, once these pests jump over from the cat's body to human body. But as mentioned earlier, they cannot dwell on human body for a long time.

Can Cat Fleas Affect Humans?

One is often inquisitive if cat fleas harm humans. Cat fleas are carriers of a disease 'murine typhus'. However, they do not transmit these diseases to the human hosts. Cat fleas are also carriers of tapeworm eggs in their guts. Thus, there is a small possibility that a person may swallow an infected flea and get infected with tapeworm. Cat flea bite causes a lot of swelling and redness. This is due to the enzymes in the cat flea saliva. They irritate the skin and lead to itchiness. The enzymes prevent the blood from coagulating and can feed on blood without any problem. People, especially children, who are hypersensitive can develop an allergic reaction to flea bite. You will mostly spot flea bites on the legs, ankles and feet. They appear like red bumps that are very small and itchy. However, you can spot these itchy flea bites on other parts of the body as well.

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