Connect with us


Fleas vs. Bed Bugs: How to Tell the Differences Between the Two



You don’t know the truth about fleas. Roughly 325 species of fleas live in the United States. You can find fleas anywhere, including in rural locations and hot climates.

Yet the fleas in your home may not be fleas. They may be bed bugs. When you’re dealing with an insect infestation, you need to identify the bugs in your home and act accordingly.

How can you tell fleas vs. bed bugs apart? What do bed bugs look like, and how do bed bugs look different from fleas? How do flea bites differ from bed bug bites?

Answer these questions and you can control your pests in no time. Here is your quick guide.


Both fleas and bed bugs are big enough to see with your naked eye. However, it is easy to confuse one with the other. Both are brown, and both are roughly the same size.

But fleas have long and narrow bodies, while bed bugs have flat and oval-shaped bodies. When bed bugs feed, they start to turn red, yet fleas remain the same color.

Flea larvae resemble worms, not insects, and they do not drink blood. You can find larvae on carpeting and in the cracks in between planks of wood.

Baby bed bugs are paler and smaller than adult bed bugs. You can find them on hosts, but they prefer to remain in nests.

Bed bug identification and flea identification can be tricky because both pests are so small. Try to trap the insects in a jar or against a wall and then use a magnifying glass to examine them. You can also look at photographs of the bugs online and then compare them to the bugs you can see.


Fleas have very strong legs for creatures of their size. They can cling onto moving objects, and they can leap long distances and upward into the air. A flea can leap off the floor onto a bed or table and then crawl onto you.

Bed bugs do not have strong legs, so they crawl and do not jump. They are small enough that they can sneak underneath crevices and then crawl onto your body.

It is hard to notice fleas or bed bugs moving. They can detect human beings, and they will wait until you are looking away before moving. You can try to spot them by looking underneath household objects while the lights are off.


Both fleas and bed bugs drink blood. Both can drink human blood, but fleas prefer cat and dog blood. Cats and dogs do not react to bites as much as humans do, and fleas can hide in their hair.

Bed bugs prefer humans, and they only bite animals if no humans are nearby. They can hide in your hair as well as in your armpits or on your ankles. They can also crawl away and return to their nests after they have fed.


Fleas like to stay on their hosts, especially if they are very hairy. But they can build small nests in the bedding of animals. Larvae can burrow down through sheets and bedding, making them hard to remove, even when you clean the sheets.

As their name suggests, bed bugs can also build nests in bedding. You can find most bed bug nests in your mattress or in your bed frame. Yet you can find them in pieces of wood furniture, box springs, and carpeting.


Distinguishing between flea bites vs. bed bug bites is extremely important. Both can spread pathogens, and bites from both can get infected and lead to significant pain.

Fleas leave small red marks on the skin that can be very itchy. If you scratch the marks, you can cause them to split open, resulting in bleeding and pain. Fleas like to feed multiple times a day, so you may have two or three bites close together.

Flea bites tend to occur around the ankles and on the feet. On rare occasions, fleas can burrow into the skin and lay eggs. The skin can become inflamed and develop lesions or itching.

Bed bugs also leave small red bites. But they tend to attack the upper parts of the body, including the face and arms. The bites can be very dark, and they can swell like mosquito bites.

You may have bed bug bites in a cluster or line. A bed bug may bite you multiple times, or multiple bugs may bite you at once. The bites can become irritated and develop blisters, but bed bugs do not burrow beneath the skin like fleas.


Treatment for fleas and bedbugs can be very difficult. Most pest control companies like Why U Buggin Pest can handle both, yet they adopt different strategies in order to kill the pests.

If your pet has fleas on it, you need to give it a special shampoo and conditioner to kill the fleas. A pest control company then needs to remove the bedding from your home. The company can clean the bedding, but it may decide to throw the bedding away if there are a lot of fleas.

Bed bugs are trickier to get rid of because they spread out. A pest control company needs to remove your bedding as well as your carpeting. They also need to examine walls and flooring and then apply pesticides to kill any eggs.

The Essentials of Fleas vs. Bed Bugs

You must distinguish between fleas vs. bed bugs. Fleas have longer bodies than bed bugs, and they can jump onto surfaces. But bed bugs can sneak underneath objects before crawling onto you.

Fleas attack pets while bed bugs attack humans. Both can stay in bedding, but bed bugs can lay nests elsewhere. When biting someone, fleas can burrow beneath the skin, while bed bugs stay on top.

You need to treat your pests with the help of a pest control company. Yet you need to be involved as well. Read more pest control guides by following our coverage.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *