How Can I Get Fleas Off A Nursing Mother Cat?

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Being a pet owner is a major stress and challenge, especially when taking care of a nursing cat. How can I get fleas off a nursing mother cat? Additionally, a mother kitten on medication may pass on its harshness through milk to its kitten. So, it cannot be said if kittens are safe.

The good thing is that some research has proven that topical medications like fipronil and selamectin, among others, remain adequately safe for all. All cats are at risk of getting fleas in their furs. It is the bare minimum. Thus, the bigger question is, what flea treatment is safe for nursing cats?

Why do nursing cats get fleas?

how can I get fleas off a nursing mother cat

Nursing cats, especially those coming in and out of the home, are prone to getting flea infestations. Likewise, kittens that roam around outdoors will pick up fleas. Fleas are easy to go from fur to fur. But that doesn’t mean indoor cats cannot get it. 

Indoor cats might get infested by other household pets and also through their owner’s carelessness, i.e., a flea making its way through bags and even clothing.

Once the entrance of the flea takes place, they immediately start taking blood for food, reproducing, and may lay up to 50 eggs in a day. For an infestation site to occur, it will take a very minimum amount of time. 

While laying eggs, fleas can also end up on the carpet, furniture, and even bed. 

signs of flea infestation on nursing mother cat and life-threatening diseases

cat infested with fleas

Fleas aren’t easily visible to the eyes. It is mainly due to their nature of living deep in the fur. However, you can still check for other infestation signs, such as:


Flea excretion is easy to detect. 90% of it is undigested blood. Look for flea dirt on your favorite areas of your cat and its bed.

Anemia and energy loss

Anemia happens when there’s less blood count than required. Cats are more susceptible to getting anemia with flea infestation due to the huge amount of blood loss. 


nursing mother cat feeding her kitten

While cats already have the habit of scratching themselves, cats that have fleas scratch more than other cats would do.


Like how cats would start over-scratching, cats would start over-grooming them. They’ll lick, bite, and chew more often and end up with bald patches and damaged fur. 

Sore skin and allergies

Even if you don’t catch your cat scratching and grooming, a sore skin will say it all. There will be scraps and red marks on the skin, much of it as an outcome of allergies. 

Bartonella (cat scratch disease)

Bartonella is a cat scratch disease that can be spread through fleas. The easiest way of spreading is through a bacteria named Bartonella.

Flea Allergic Dermatitis

The most common allergy to fleas in cats is FAD. Allergic reactions mainly happen due to flea saliva, and even a single bite can worsen them. Due to FAD, cats are also at a higher risk of getting infections.


Having fleas on your cat may transmit a tapeworm parasite, which can be ingested while your cat is licking itself. A side effect of this is that even your cat will develop tapeworms.


Typhus can be lethal in humans and life-taking for cats. Even cat fleas have the potential to cause typhus, mostly in coastal and tropical areas. However, having typhus is extremely rare. 

Flea comb test

A flea comb is simply a great instrument to check for fleas while combing your cat. While combing, keep white sheets beneath to make it easier for you to catch flea or its feces. 

How can I get fleas off a nursing mother cat?

Despite being small pests, fleas can make life difficult when an infestation occurs. Fleas impact our lives, be it for humans or cats. As with combat, flea treatments are completely safe for nursing mothers and will help get rid of the fleas if used with the utmost care.

Consulting the vet

If your cat hangs out mostly, the chances are that it already has fleas on it.

Eventually, fleas from the mother cat to the kittens will follow. And although there is an abundance of flea treatments available on the market, only a few are supposedly ‘safe’ for use. What brand is good for your cat isn’t always certain to be effective for other cats. Therefore, interest your vet with your concern. 

Topical medication

Topical flea treatments have a formula similar to poisons. Use this poison to your advantage. When applied, the cat’s skin will absorb the substance. They are safe and less likely to affect the kitten unless they are young. 

Usage is simple, but remember to use only the product suitable and prepared specifically for cats. Never mix up products with those of other animals. 

Just spray the medication on the neck or between the shoulder blades. 

After some time, the fleas will start dying. 

Make sure only to use topical flea medication, as the rest of the alternatives might not get along with a young kitten. 

How to Get Rid of Fleas on a Kitten Fast?

newborn kittens have fleas

If a mom-cat has fleas, the kittens are at the absolute risk of having them, too. Keep mother and kitten separate for a while after a flea medicine has been given to the mother kitten. 

Because the substances used to produce the medication are harmful, kittens are sensitive to its harshness. 

There is no such flea remover for cats younger than a month. So if your kitten already has kitten fleas on them, here are ways to solve the problem: 

Flea bath for kittens

kitten pet ready to take a bath

Fill the tub or sink with warm water. Mix the water with the kitty dish soap. Put your kitten in the bath and dip it into its neck. Keep caution with its eyes and let no water enter the eyes. 

Please use a towel for your face and ears and wipe them over gently instead. Then take the kitten away from the tub and massage it using cat soap. After that, rinse off the soap in the tub again.

After bathing the kitten, wipe it using a clean, warm towel. 

Move her to somewhere warm to make sure your kitten doesn’t fall ill or make it more comfortable.

Medications for kittens

Also, a vet can suggest safe flea medicine for kittens, but only if your kitten is at least four weeks old. Due to extremely harsh chemicals, younger kittens are rarely recommended for chemicals.

Your kitten may still be consulted with oral medication, provided they are old enough to bear its reactions. Oral medications, if prescribed, will be one dose a day. 

For six weeks old kittens, they are ready to take topical medications once in a while. 

You must never intend to use anything on kittens without prior consultation from the vet. Different cats have different strengths, and only a vet can determine the safest procedure. 

How to treat newborn kittens for fleas naturally?

As kittens don’t hold enough strength to capture the chemicals, naturally removing kitten fleas is an effective alternative to those. Brush the fur, maintain hygiene norms, and manual removal of fleas come under this. 

Combing the kittens and cleaning their ears

baby cat enjoying itself being combed at home

Consult a vet regarding the kind of flea comb you must use. Brush the fur with the same

A flea comb is the most effective way to get rid of fleas. There are no chemicals involved, no medications, and no side effects- i.e., it is the most natural flea meds for kittens.

For the best results, comb the kittens every day. Please pick them up with tweezers as soon as you see fleas coming out. 

In a hot water bowl, drop the collected fleas.

Manual removal from the flea site

After you bathe your kitten, the probability of seeing fleas coming out is high, meaning you can pick them up whenever they are visible. Also, kitten fleas have a habit of taking refuge over the neck and face portion of kittens during the bath.

So, check out for that and immediately try removing them using tweezers. Remove the flea queen, which will solve more than half the problem.

Basic hygiene

The environment is a great factor for fleas. Therefore, wash sheets- both yours and cats, litterbox and cat toys regularly, and in warm water if possible. If possible, do it every dawn.

Ensure your home is free from any litter, vacuumed daily, and floors wiped with disinfectants. Also, regularly dust your furniture. Dusting and vacuuming will cleanse all the eggs and larvae in and around.

The more regular you become in maintaining cleanliness, the easier it would be to get rid of the Infestation. 

If you see that none of the told precautions are of help, contact pests control immediately to discontinue the flea revolution. 


Fleas are tiny and only around 1-2 mm on average. Their site of rest is the fur. It’s obvious they are visible, yet they are brilliant in hiding. It is why medications are necessary for their extermination.

The catch, whatsoever, is that younger ones are unsafe for their administration. Only six weeks or older kittens and adult cults are suitable for flea medications. 

Fleas are a thing of concern. The best piece of advice would be; never be too desperate to end it all harshly without the consultation of a med.

About the author

A biotechnologist by profession and a passionate pest researcher. I have been one of those people who used to run away from cockroaches and rats due to their pesky features, but then we all get that turn in life when we have to face something.