There are various types of fleas that live right under our noses and infest our homes and animals.
There is the cat flea (Ctenocephalides felis), the dog flea (Ctenocephalides canis), the human flea (Pulex irritans) and the oriental rat flea (Xenopsylla cheopsis).
They have special adapted mouthparts for piercing skin and sucking blood. They are external parasites that are attracted to mammals as well as birds. Fleas are more of a nuisance than anything else, as the effects of their bites include itching. The saliva left behind from the flea can also cause allergic reactions which results in rashes. Long term effects include hair loss due to constant itching and scratching. In extreme cases, the result of flea bites and irritation of the skin can cause anaemia.
Other than being very frustrating because of the itchiness, fleas can also be a vector for disease by transmitting viral and bacterial diseases to humans or other animals. Fleas are infamous in the past for having started epidemics such as the Bubonic plague, when they transferred the disease from rodents to humans. If one has animals, there will more than likely be fleas in the sleeping area of the pet, as fleas tend to lay eggs where their young can feed off the animal’s blood at all times.