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Where Do Fleas Usually Bite Humans?

Woman standing in front of a pink background scratching her arm

Fleas Can Be Annoying

When you are out for a picnic, enjoying your yard, and even going for some nice long hike in forested mountains, your trip can be interrupted by fleas. Fleas are not limited to just cats and dogs and they can be found everywhere.

When they start biting, your fun time can end up being a very annoying time out in nature. But just where do fleas bite humans? Keep reading to find out the answer to that question. There is other important information in this article as well.

Where Do Fleas Bite on The Human Body?

Illustration of the human body

If you are outside enjoying the great outdoors, the good news is that fleas do not bite through clothing. They do not seem to like the taste of natural and synthetic fibers when they need to feed.

What that means is that if you wear long sleeves, long pants, and other clothing that protects the body, you should not be bitten by a flea. However, fleas do like bare skin, and they will find it. If you are wearing socks, you may find bites on your ankles, shins, or calves.

That is the best news about this topic. Fleas do not travel up your body to find a place to bite. They like the lower extremities like your calves, ankles, and feet. They will travel far enough to find a bare patch of skin and take their meal.

But fleas do not live on humans, and they will be gone as quickly as they can. You just have to wash your clothes after you come home from a day outside in the park, bushes, or even your garden.

Do Fleas Bite Above the Knee?

Flea bites on a person's knee

While we just said that the flea does not travel very far to get a meal, they will bite higher up on your body if you are lying down and you have exposed skin close to flowers, bushes, and other foliage.

If you are sleeping in a flea-infested bed or piece of furniture, then you may receive bites to your head, neck, arms, and so on. The flea will take the closest body part they can and leap on it to get their meal if no other host is around.

Fleas do prefer cats and dogs but they will take every opportunity that comes their way to feed off other animals and humans. You just have to be careful and take strong anti-flea measures to keep those pesky creatures from invading your home and bedding, etc.

You got bit by a flea. What happens now? Check out our post “What Happens If Humans Get Flea Bites?” to learn more.

Are Flea Bites Dangerous?

Flea standing on human skin

Not always but they can be. You never know what type of germ, bacteria, or other diseases the flea may be carrying around with them. But not all fleas carry diseases as the human flea species do not, but they can carry parasites that develop into tapeworms.

The cat flea can transmit Murine typhus through its bite, but it can also indirectly transmit it to you through your cat. Your cat would have to bite or lick you for you to get these diseases. If you get this disease, you will experience body aches, nausea, fever, and headaches.

Sometimes you will see a rash on your skin. If left untreated, you could develop kidney disease or diabetes. The bites from the Chigoe flea are ones that you have to watch out for. Their bite can cause Bartonella henselae which if left untreated can cause infections that lead to amputations.

Finally, the Oriental Rat Flea can transmit the Bubonic plague or Lyme disease to humans or dogs. If you get these diseases antibiotics can treat them in you but your dog or cat may have to have a blood transfusion.

What Do Flea Bites Look Like?

Flea on human skin

This is the tell-tale sign that you have been bitten. A flea bite is not invisible. You should see little red dots in a line along your vein or in groups in the same area. There may be some redness or a light halo effect around these bites.

If you see a series of these bites, you should take some anti-flea steps to get rid of those creatures and protect your body. While fleas do not stay on your body for long, they will continue to bite when given the opportunity.

Some Final Words

Family playing with their dog outdoors

Being outside means you want to enjoy the sun and its warmth. It is normal to dress in shorts, go without socks, etc., but those types of clothing are invitations to the flea that supper time is right around the corner.

When you are outside enjoying the warm weather take care to avoid those areas that you suspect may have fleas. That way you can enjoy the sun and the day without worrying about getting sick.

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