Can sugar gliders get fleas?
If you’re wondering that very question, stick around!
Below, we’ll provide a detailed answer to this question and provide a couple more tips on how to care for a sugar glider.
Can Sugar Gliders Get Fleas?
The answer to this question is a resounding yes.
As in the case of dogs and cats, sugar gliders can also get infested with fleas. However, there’s a very small likelihood of such an infestation occurring.
Here’s the deal, a sugar glider’s fur is quite dense, and this makes it difficult for any kind of pest to hide in it.
In fact, this is the reason why sugar gliders are often recommended for owners who prefer hypoallergenic pets because they’re less likely to trigger allergic reactions.
So even though sugar gliders can get attacked by fleas, mites and other pests, the chances of this happening are very minimal.
But, the same cannot be said of their counterparts in the wild, who are more likely to be exposed to all sorts of pests.
4 Signs that My Sugar Glider Has Fleas
Do you suspect that your sugar glider(s) might have fleas? If you do, there are a couple of things you can do to confirm your suspicions. Here are some common signs of a potential flea infestation:
#1 You can see them on your pet’s fur
The first thing you should do is inspect your sugar glider’s gray fur. These insects will be a little difficult to spot on the surface because they’re small, so be sure to inspect your pet’s fur closely.
Fleas are about ⅛ -inch long, with a reddish-brown hue. These insects can also hop from one place to another.
So if you notice such insects jumping around your glider’s fur, it’s very likely that your pet is infested with fleas.
#2 Your sugar glider is scratching
Another sign you should look out for is if you notice your pet scratching themselves more often than usual. The reason they scratch is that fleas cause stinging or sharp and prickly pain when they bite.
#3 You notice flea dirt
While you may not catch these pests red-handed, you might be able to see what they leave behind on your pet’s fur.
Flea dirt entails tiny, dark flakes, which constitute flea droppings.
These particles, which bear a striking resemblance to pepper, can be spotted on your pet’s fur, bedding, toys for sugar gliders, or cage.
#4 You come across other suspicious items or substances within your home
Inspecting your sugar glider for fleas is not enough. You should also consider doing a thorough inspection of your home.
While you’re at it, keep an eye out for stuff that these insects might leave behind, like flea eggs.
These will have an off-white shade, and they may fall off from the area the fleas had inhabited, such as your pet’s bed, or your own bed.
If you start noticing such strange particles floating around your house, there’s a good chance that you’re dealing with fleas.
How to Protect your Sugar Glider from Fleas
Since preventing fleas in the first place is A LOT easier than managing an infestation, let’s talk tips on keeping these critters out of your home.
Later on, we’ll discuss what to do if it’s already too late for prevention.
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One of the things you can do is to keep up with your pet’s grooming routine. This ensures that your sugar glider and the setup in which he lives in, are always clean.
That said, it’s important to note that sugar gliders do not require frequent bathing. These creatures have a way of grooming themselves in the same way that cats do.
So bathing them is unnecessary. The only time you’ll need to bathe them is if you detect an odor.
If you do decide to give your buddy a bath, ensure you use a pet-friendly shampoo.
Don’t be tempted to use human shampoo because you never know how it might affect your pet’s skin.
Citrus Magic Pet Cleanser is a good example of a shampoo. Formulated with vegetable enzymes, this bathing formula is completely safe for small animals like sugar gliders.
Plus, it comes in a thoughtfully designed bottle, which makes it easy to dispense its contents.
Clean your sugar glider’s cage
In addition to keeping your pet clean, you should also ensure to clean the sugar glider cage.
Start by placing your sugar glider’s cage on a tray with bedding.
Such a setup allows waste and stray food to be collected with ease. For the tray, any plastic or metallic version works fine.
For the bedding, we’d recommend one made of paper like Carefresh.
This pet bedding has a soft texture, making it comfortable for your sugar glider.
More importantly, it has an odor control system, which suppresses ammonia for up to 10 days. This means you only need to change out the bedding once every week.
Back to cleaning, it’s wise to give your sugar glider cage sets a quick wipe-down at least two times a week.
You don’t have to use sophisticated cleaning tools for this. A simple rug with dish soap and water or unscented baby wipes will suffice.
Keep your sugar glider’s feeding and water bowls clean
After every feeding, clean your sugar glider water bottle and bowls. Start by rinsing them under running water to get rid of any remaining chunks of food.
You can then clean them thoroughly using warm or hot water and a liquid or detergent soap.
Do this each time following a feeding session, to avoid creating a habitable environment for fleas.
Also, when you set your pet’s water bowl, don’t leave it exposed for too long as doing so can also invite other pests.
How can I prevent fleas inside my home?
The best way to keep fleas from your sugar glider is to ensure that they never access your home in the first place. Here are a few tricks to keep fleas from your home:
Keep it clean
If your home is infested with fleas, this doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s dirty.
However, if you pay more attention to specific areas, you can make these places less friendly to fleas.
For instance, flea eggs, larvae and pupae like to hide underneath or on carpets and throw rugs. So set aside time to vacuum your carpets on a weekly basis.
While you’re at it, use a powerful vacuum, preferably, one with a dust bag that you can easily dispose of when you finish cleaning.
Whenever possible, you can also use a steam cleaner on your carpets and upholstery. Combining intense heat and soap is sure to destroy any fleas hiding in these areas.
Wash your bedding regularly
Get into the habit of cleaning your bedding, including your pet’s, every once in a while. Use hot water to wash these items, as this will also get rid of any fleas present.
After washing, dry the garments using the highest heat setting.
If the infestation is full-blown, we recommend throwing away your old bedding and investing in new ones.
Keep your yard clean
One place that fleas find habitable is in very tall grass. So if you have a lawn, mow it on a regular basis to make it inhabitable for these pests.
When you finish mowing, rake the grass clippings and bag them as opposed to piling them at a specific spot.
Even if the grass isn’t tall enough to be mowed, it’s a good idea to remove any debris lying around.
This also entails removing twigs, and dead leaves from your flower beds. Doing so leaves most of your yard exposed to as much sunlight as possible, and this acts as a deterrent.
Spread cedar chips
If you like taking your sugar glider outdoors, consider spreading some cedar chips on those areas where they lie down.
You can also spread them on your flower beds and underneath nearby bushes to discourage fleas from accessing your yard.
Consult your gardening center
Another thing you can do is to seek help from your local gardening center. Specifically, ask whether they can provide you with nematodes.
These are microscopic worms, which although harmless to humans and pets, cause severe damage to fleas eggs and larvae.
You can spread these worms in problematic areas to control these parasites naturally.
Employ a yearly flea prevention plan
Fleas are more common in the warmer months. Cooler temperatures usually cause these parasites to lay dormant.
But this doesn’t necessarily mean that they cannot survive the winter season. Our research reveals that these pests can survive in temperatures as low as 46°F.
As a result, most vets recommend owners to undertake preventive measures all year- round. There are numerous flea prevention products you can choose from.
Just ensure that you check in with your vet to confirm that they’re safe to use on your sugar glider.
Use a lemon spray
Apart from nematodes and cedar chips, lemon is another effective natural flea deterrent.
If you suspect that there are fleas in certain areas of your home, you can use a lemon spray to nip this problem in the bud.
To make the solution, slice 1 to 3 lemons thinly and then place them in a pot filled with at least 12 ounces of water.
Bring the solution to a boil, then lower the heat before allowing it to simmer. Leave the solution overnight to give the lemons enough time to steep.
The following morning, extract the lemons and pour the solution into a clean spray bottle. Use this to spray flea-prone areas.
How can I get rid of fleas from my sugar glider if they have Them?
In the unfortunate event that your sugar glider has fleas, the first thing you should do is give them a quick bath.
Use relatively warm water, and mild soap to rid your pet’s fur of these tiny critters.
If you’re considering using a flea shampoo, consult your vet first and use it only if he gives you the green light.
Once you’ve given him a bath, the next step is to run a flea comb through their fur. This is a special type of comb, equipped with teeth that attract and trap fleas.
Even if your pet doesn’t have any fleas, using this comb is a nice way to remove flea dirt and flea droppings from their fur.
When you’re done using the comb, dip it in hot soapy water to kill any fleas that might linger on it.
Don’t attempt to crush the insects. Fleas are swift in their movement, and they will likely jump before you have a chance to kill them.
It’s also important that you perform routine checks afterwards to ensure your sugar glider doesn’t suffer another infestation.
If your pet has a bad history of getting attacked by fleas often, then run the flea comb on their fur at least once per week.
While it’s true that sugar gliders can get attacked by fleas, the chances of this happening are small.
These pets have very thick fur, which makes it harder for insects like fleas and mites to stick around.
Better yet, you can take measures to ensure that your adorable, little glider never suffers this fate.
This entails bathing your pet when necessary, keeping his cage tidy by changing out the bedding, and keeping his feeding bowls and other accessories clean.
You should also keep your yard clean by mowing your lawn regularly and removing debris.
However, if your sugar glider is already infested with fleas, give them a quick bath to get rid of these parasites from their fur.
You can use a pet-friendly flea shampoo for this. After the bath, run a flea comb on their fur to remove any remaining fleas, flea dirt, or droppings.
Finally, inspect your sugar glider for fleas on occasion to ensure he doesn’t suffer from another attack.
We answered many of these questions above, but here’s summary for you.
Can Sugar Gliders Get Fleas?
Yes, they can. However, they’re less likely than a cat or dog to pick up these nasty critters.
Can I use Flea Shampoo on a Sugar Glider?
Only when directed to do so by a vet with experience in dealing with small exotic pets. Most flea shampoos are too harsh for your glider’s skin.
Can Fleas Kill a Sugar Glider?
While fleas themselves aren’t typically deadly to gliders, they can cause tapeworm. That CAN kill your glider.
What are your thoughts? Can sugar gliders get fleas, in your opinion? Share below.
Deanna is a passionate animal lover. She is the mom of several guinea pigs and sugar gliders.