Weather forecasters are predicting a record cold winter in 2019. With temperatures dropping, heaters are going to be cranked up all over the United Kingdom. Pet owners in the UK might be facing a flea epidemic as their homes reach the ideal thriving temperature for fleas.

Summer is not the only season when your pets are at risk of carrying home some unwanted guests on their skin. Many pet parents are unaware of the flea infestation risk they face every winter when they heat up their homes.

Flea eggs and flea pupae hatch when the temperature is high. Summer used to be the only time in the UK when fleas found the ideal temperature to thrive. However, central heating in most homes has turned fleas into a perennial problem instead of a seasonal one.

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The flea was encased in amber 20 million years ago in what is now the Dominican Republic George Poinar, Jr., courtesy of Oregon State University

The Daily Star shared the information unearthed by a pet care company which points out that London, Norwich, and Newcastle are areas where flea medication sales are high. These happen to be the areas where people tend to keep their homes warmer than the rest of the UK. This points out that the temperature of your heating directly affects the life cycle of fleas.

In homes with pets, fleas can be hiding in the pet's bedding, carpets and soft furnishing. An infestation does not only affect pets since fleas often end up feeding on the pet owners as well.

Pet care company Itchpet vet Zoe Costigan shared ways of finding fleas before they start breeding in heated homes.

The most obvious sign of a flea infestation is constant itching. Pets can be scratching and biting certain parts of the body. Inspection of the area can show small red bites which are flea bites. Small black specs in the area are also a sign of flea infestation, as they are usually flea droppings.

Getting pets treated for fleas does not put an end to most pet owners' flea problems. Fleas might be hiding in your carpets. Wearing white socks and walking over the carpet can reveal hidden fleas and flea droppings.

By checking pets for fleas and using flea medication, the winter can be flea free.