Can Guinea Pigs Get Fleas From Hay?

This question typically shows up on social because guinea pig owners are unaware of the risks their piggies face if they do eat hay. If Guinea Pigs eat hay, can guinea pigs get fleas from hay?

Hay is known to harbor a number of parasites and Guinea pigs are susceptible to a variety of parasites because they are small and their skin is thin. But again, can guinea pigs get fleas from hay?

Can Fleas Live In Hay?

It’s unfortunately true that guinea pigs may have fleas and other parasites from hay. Fleas are parasites that need a host to flourish, sometimes waiting for long period to find a suitable host.

Microscope view of a flea

Fleas are living organisms that need to feed on an animal or a human in order to survive and grow. They can live up to 2 weeks without a host before they have to find a new one.

Buying in bulk or from a farmer you might be at risk for certain parasites, but if you purchase your hay from pet stores & animal supply, it should be safe but there is a possibility of having fleas.

Keep hay out of moisture and store it properly. If the hay is damp, this could attract fleas, so store it in a safe place. When you give your guinea pig fresh hay everyday, provide them with good quality feed as they would appreciate that more than dried up old hay.

Also Read : A study found that fleas can live in hay. Here is the article, please read it.

What Causes Fleas To Hide In Hay?

  • Some believe that it is a lack of food while others believe that they are just looking for a safe place from where they can drink more blood from their host without being seen.
  • It is an easier place for them to lay eggs than on carpets and furniture.
  • They enjoy the warmth.
  • Fleas need to hide to survive. Giving them peace and safety from predators.
  • It has all the qualities that fleas need – airy spaces, easy access and plenty of food.
  • They enjoy hiding in hay.
  • This makes it more likely for flea populations to grow and spread quickly

How Do I Know If My Hay Has Fleas?

  • The best way to find out if your hay has fleas is to inspect each piece of hay on the floor. Flea eggs are tiny, so you might need a magnifying glass or microscope in order to see them.
  • You can also shake some hay on a white sheet of paper and look for small black specks of dirt that move – these specks are flea feces.
  • Check the underside of bales where they might hide during daytime hours.

How To Remove The Threat Of Fleas In Your Haystack?

  • Steam the hay.
    Here Is How To Make A DIY Steamer To Steam The Hay.
    A steel/plastic bucket with a lid cut out where you could place a pole across it. Add a few liters of boiled water to the bin, add some hay in a haynet & hang it up, then place the lid on. Leave for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Vacuum the hay on a regular basis.
  • Put hay in the freezer for a little while.
  • Wash in hot water.
  • Use flea control products(consider your pet is not at risk using the product and ensure it is recommended by a veterinarian).
  • Use a fine-toothed comb to remove.

The above actions will kill any fleas or eggs that may be present in the hay. Do not forget to wash your hands with soap and water after handling hay to minimize the risk of infection.

What Do I Do If I Find A Live Flea In My Hay?

Step 1: Change the Hay

The first step is to find a fresh supply of hay for your guniea pig. This new hay should also be stored properly so it does not become infested with fleas again.

Step 2: Vacuum the hay & the house

Vacuum the hay on a regular basis and discard it in a sealed bag. As well as, vacuuming is an important step in getting rid of flea eggs and larvae from the environment around your house. This will help pull fleas up from the hay where they are hiding. Clean your vacuum after you finish so you don’t spread the infestation to another location

Step 3: Use a natural spray like oil of eucalyptus, tea tree oil or any other flea control product on it after vacuuming to kill any remaining flea eggs.

Step 4: Clean outdoors: Clean the area around the house frequently. This includes patios, sidewalks, driveways, and any other areas outside of your home that lead to the house.

Step 5: Move outdoor furniture: Fleas can live in couches or beds that are placed outdoors. Move these items into the garage or inside the home when not in use to prevent fleas from living there.

Final Thoughts

“Can Guinea Pigs Get Fleas From Hay?” The answer to this question is yes. Guinea pigs can get fleas in hay or close to it.
Hay is a natural home for fleas, guinea pigs are often kept in hay, but the point is not just to provide them with food. Hay also provides the guinea pigs with a place to sleep and lots of opportunity for play.

Further Reading

Let’s keep reading to learn more about Hay.

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