Using A Cat Flea Comb Effectively

Daily grooming with a cat flea comb will keep your cat or kitten contented, free from fleas and help you develop a closer relationship. Here's how... 

First, choose your cat flea comb

To be effective, a flea comb must be fine-toothed so it can do these two jobs in one go:

  1. Check for fleas and flea dirt so you know how big your problem is.
  2. Remove dead hair so less is shed around the house.

Not every flea comb will do this.  The gap between the teeth has to be 0.155 mm that is 10 teeth per 8 mm. When choosing your comb hold it up to the light. If you can see light through it, then it won’t catch fleas.  

If you combine combing with a flea egg control system such as flea proofing your home then you can achieve excellent, environmentally friendly ways to kill cat fleas.

The other huge benefit of grooming with a flea comb is that it socialises your cat or kitten in a “Mutual Grooming” scenario like mother and child, so both of you enjoy it!

So, comb your cat - as a bonding, pleasant activity (most cats love it) as well as a seek and destroy strategy in the battle with the adaptable feline flea and the associated problems such as your feline friend developing a flea allergy.

How to use the comb for maximum results

Like most things it’s easy once you get the knack.

You will need your cat sitting comfortably on a solid surface.  Have puss somewhere that you can easily see, and get rid of, the flea eggs and flea dirt that you comb off.

Watch this video to get the inside scoop as to how to go about it.

Now start  cat combing

  • Get right down to the cat’s skin - you will hear a swishing/scratching noise as you scrape the surface.  Be careful not to do it too hard though! The comb is doing all the heavy lifting of fleas and flea dirt!

  • Most cat and kitten fleas are under the neck and around the base of the tail.  You’ll also find them on the back of the legs so make sure you thoroughly cover these areas.  And even if you don’t catch a flea, on the first run through, you should be able to identify the flea dirt on your comb.

Position the comb at a right angle.  If you hold it at 45 degrees (acute and going with the hair direction) to the cat’s skin, you can dislodge the flea and the flea dirt.  The comb will act like a scoop. 

  • If you have the comb parallel to the skin (horizontal) you will not get any fleas.

  • At right angles (90 degrees) to the skin (vertical or perpendicular) it is hard to keep the comb close enough to the skin to dislodge the fleas.
Hold a comb for cat fleas at a right angle

It’s worth noting that even the most expert flea combers can only recapture around 85% of the fleas on the cat - even after 30 minutes combing.  So if you catch 1 flea - there are at least 2 more so keep combing!  And if you catch 5 fleas, talk to your vet about the BEST cat flea treatment for your situation before you have a plague!

Now is also the time to get information on feline flea proofing your home as you can bet if they are on your cat they are also making your home their comfy breeding ground.

Identifying Flea Dirt

Yes it’s just as important to know about as the fleas.  Flea dirt is black, small and often forms ‘commas’.
It turns dark red when water is applied because it is your cat’s blood digested by the flea and then excreted as flea poo.  And it usually means the flea has laid 40 eggs as well so keep hunting.

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