Fleas in Bed: What Are the Signs?

Fleas in bed can be a real nuisance and awful to deal with. They are annoying and can cause anxiety and health problems for you and your pet. Nobody wants fleas in their bed; we will go over the top signs and what to look for.

If you’re suspicious about having fleas in your bed, there are some signs to watch out for.

Fleas in Bed: 8 Signs To Look For

fleas in bed: signs to look for

Pets are prone to fleas, and you must be vigilant about spotting the signs if you have a pet. Fleas can quickly spread to your bed, couches, hardwood floors, rugs, and other furniture.

Your Pet Is Scratching More Than Usual

One of the most apparent fleas in bed signs is that your pet will start scratching more than usual. This is because the fleas will cause your pet to itch, and the more your pet scratches, the more likely they will develop an infection.

If you suspect your pet has fleas, it’s crucial to take action immediately. In addition to excessive scratching, you may also notice that your pet is losing hair in patches or that their skin is red and irritated.

Fleas can quickly spread through a home. Furthermore, they can also bite humans, so it’s best to nip the problem in the bud as soon as possible.

Bites on Your Body

a flea on finger

Flea bites are small and often in clusters. Many people will see these itchy red bumps on their legs since the fleas will jump and bite them from the ground. Fleas are known to jump and crawl, and folks often wonder, “do fleas have wings? and the answer is a resounding “no, fleas do not have wings.”

However, if you have fleas in your bed, you can see these bites anywhere on your exposed skin. Fleas will also bite your pet, so if you notice bites on your pet, it’s a good idea to check for fleas in your bed.

Flea Dirt

Flea dirt is the excrement of fleas, and it looks like tiny black specks. In case you suspect fleas are living in your bed, take a close look at your sheets and pillows for any small black particles.

Remember that the flea specks are not permanent stains like bed bug poop but instead look like pepper flakes.

Check your pet’s fur for flea dirt by combing it with a fine-toothed flea comb. You likely have fleas in your home if you see any black flakes on your pet’s skin or bedding.

Flea Eggs on Your Bed Sheets (Fleas in Bed)

flea egg on carpet under bed

Flea eggs are so small that they will be almost impossible to see with the naked eye. While it’s likely that you have flea eggs on your bed sheets, you are unlikely to see them if you are dealing with a flea infestation.

Each flea egg is 0.5 mm in length. When you compare this to the bed bug egg size of 1 mm, you can see how tiny they are.

To see if you have flea eggs on your bed sheets, use a magnifying glass and look closely at the fabric. If you see any small white dots, these could be flea eggs.

More importantly if unsure, carefully collect these possible flea eggs and use the magnifying glass function on your phone. If your specimen is 0.5 mm, pearly white, and smooth, you may have found a flea egg on your bed sheets.

Wash your bedding in hot water to kill any flea eggs on your bed sheets.

Small Moving Bugs in Your Pets Fur

These are likely fleas if you see small, slender dark colored bugs moving quickly in your pet’s fur. Fleas are about 1.5 mm – 3 mm long and brown or dark in color.

In addition to being small, these bugs can jump up to 19 cm in the air. It is common for fleas to jump from one animal to another, while their eggs, larvae, and pupae can infest your home too.

Mattress Worms (Signs of Fleas in Bed)

flea eggs and larvae on a pets bed

The life cycle of a flea involves small worm-like creatures called larvae. These flea larvae (aka: bed worms) will feed on the dried feces of the adult fleas.

Generally, cleaning, washing, vacuuming, and steaming will eliminate flea larvae that might infest your home.

Please note that some of this site’s links are affiliate links, and Doctor Sniffs is a participant in the Amazon  Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees (at no cost to you) by linking to affiliate sites. All earnings help keep this site running and allow us to get more articles up.

Small Jumping Bug (Fleas in Bed)

You may want to inspect your pet’s fur for fleas if you see a tiny jumping bug. If you use a good flea comb, you’ll be able to determine if your pet has a flea issue. Another option is to take your animal to the veterinary clinic, and they can do a thorough inspection of your pet’s fur.

If you don’t have pets and see a small jumping bug, you still cannot rule out fleas. One scenario is if you just moved into a new home or apartment and the previous resident had a flea issue. In this case, there is a chance that they left some flea eggs behind, and those have now hatched.

Although vacuuming for fleas is a good idea, you’ll also have to steam your floors to help get rid of any fleas in your home. But keep in mind that the life stages of the flea: larvae, and pupae, are hard to eradicate.

Your Pet is Losing its Fur

Flea Bite Dermatitis on a Stray dog - One of the Signs of fleas

Another sign of fleas in your bed is if you notice that your pet is losing its fur. Loss of fur can be due to flea bites or from your pet scratching and biting itself because of the itchiness.

Flea bite dermatitis is a severe allergic reaction to flea saliva, and it can cause your pet to lose its fur. Meanwhile if you see bald spots on your pet or the coat is thinning out, take them to the vet immediately.

What Are the Early Stage Fleas in Bed Signs?

An early stage sign of fleas in your bed is your pet scratching more than usual, you have bites, you see jumping bugs, or you see mattress worms. Any of these signs warrants a closer inspection for fleas.

It’s important to note that some of these signs might indicate a bed bug issue or lice on your bedding.

If you think you have fleas in your bed, the best thing to do is to contact a professional pest control company. They can adequately evaluate the situation and recommend the best course of treatment.

FAQs About Signs of Fleas in Bed

Can You See Fleas Eggs on Bed Sheets?

flea eggs on bed sheets are hard to see

Flea eggs are about 0.5 mm, smaller than bed bug eggs. Although you can technically see a flea egg, due to its size and color, you may not notice them.

If you see something that looks like a possible flea egg, use a magnifying glass. Most phones will have a magnifying glass function if you don’t have one.

You can easily see the shape of the possible flea egg with a magnifying glass. Flea eggs are oval and pearly white, so if your specimen looks irregularly shaped, it’s probably not a flea egg.

What Is Flea Dirt on Sheets?

Flea dirt is the dried feces of an adult flea, which contains blood and other waste products. This is likely flea dirt when you see tiny black specs on your bed sheets.

How To Get Rid of Fleas on Blankets

If you see fleas on your blankets, the first step is to put everything through the high dryer. The next step would be to consult with your veterinarian.

What Are Flea Stains on Sheets?

Flea stains can be reddish black flea feces. These are not typically liquid-like bed bug feces, but they can stain your sheets nonetheless.

Can Fleas Live in Memory Foam Mattresses?

No, fleas will not live in a memory foam mattress. If you have a flea issue in your home, putting a mattress encasement around your bed will be beneficial after you finish treating your pets and the environment.

Furthermore, a mattress encasement will protect your memory foam from flea larvae and help with bed bugs, carpet beetles, and dust mites.

What Do Flea Larvae Look Like on Your Bed?

Flea larvae are semi-white worms with a reddish digestive tract. Furthermore, they are about 2 mm – 5 mm in length. They are usually tucked away among the blankets or under the box spring if you see them in your bed.

Can Fleas Live on Bedding?

Fleas are parasitic insects that need regular blood feedings to survive. Furthermore, fleas can live off of a host for about two weeks; during this time, they can live in your bedding and periodically bite you (the human).

Is There Such a Thing As Flea Blood Spots on Sheets?

Fleas will leave behind blackish feces that look like pepper flakes. More importantly, when you smear them with water, the poop will turn reddish brown. So while they won’t necessarily leave blood spots on your sheets, you may see rusty-colored stains from their feces.

How To Get Rid of Fleas in Bed

Treat the Animals

The first step to getting rid of fleas in a bed is to treat the animals that share the bed with you. You can do treatment with a vet-prescribed medication or over-the-counter flea treatment. If your pets have fleas, you must talk to your veterinarian.

Vacuum the Bed

After you have treated your pets, it is time to focus on the bed itself. The best way to get rid of fleas in a bed is to use a powerful vacuum. 

Vacuum the cracks and crevices around the bed frame and the mattress. Once you have vacuumed, immediately dispose of the bag to prevent fleas from escaping back into your home.

The protocol for fleas is to make sure to dispose of the vacuum bag or contents of the vacuum immediately. 

High Heat Dryer

After you have vacuumed, it is time to put everything through a high-heat dryer. The high heat will kill the various life stages of the flea.

Steamer

Use a steamer for bed bugs to treat fleas as well. You run the steamer over all of the cracks and crevices in your hardwood floors, which might be a place where the pupae are hiding out.

Insecticide

You may need to hire a professional to treat your home with an insecticide. Hiring a professional is especially true if the fleas have infested other areas of your home, such as the carpet or furniture.

Natural Flea Repellent for Your Perimeter

Use something like Wondercide to treat the outside yard and perimeter of the home. Wondercide is an all-natural, safe product that will help to prevent fleas from entering your home. (and it smells good too)

They even make an indoor Wondercide product; if you treat your pet, vacuum, steam, and high-heat dry everything, you may get away with just using Wondercide instead of heavy pesticides.

What Do You Do if Your Dog Has Fleas and Sleeps in Your Bed?

First and foremost, your best action is to talk to your veterinarian and buy some flea treatment for your pet. If you are against using harsh chemicals on your pet, you’ll have to weigh your options because allowing your pet to live with fleas may be just as harmful.

Furthermore your pet may get tapeworms from ingesting fleas, bacterial infections, dermatitis, or flea-borne typhus. The flea-borne typhus is spread between animals and from animals to humans. 

After treating your pet for fleas, you’ll need to follow the steps above to get rid of fleas in your bed.

Final Thoughts for “Help! I Found a Flea in My Bed!”

Fleas in your bed can be a real annoyance, not to mention a potential health hazard. If you find one, there are a few things you can do.

First, try to determine where the flea came from. It likely hitched a ride on you or your pet if it’s just one. In that case, inspecting your pet’s fur and thoroughly checking the bed should take care of things.

If you find more than one flea, that’s a sign of an infestation. In that case, you’ll need to take some serious steps to get rid of them.

Equally important, start by vacuuming your entire house and washing all your bedding and clothes in hot water. You may also need to call in a professional exterminator.