Electronic Flea Collars

In the 1960s, the electronic flea collar was invented as an alternative to chemically treating a pet for a flea infestation. The concept behind the electronic flea collar is that it produces a high pitch sound, or ultrasound, that deters the fleas away from the animal wearing the collar.

This sound does not harm the animal wearing the collar or any humans within range; the frequency is only picked up by fleas and other various pests. Manufacturers of the collar state that the sound is so powerful that it causes fleas to leave your pet before they bite the animal once.

These electronic flea collars usually cost around $25 to $50, and they are powered by replaceable batteries. The batteries will have to be changed every six months in order to keep your pet flea free.

How Electronic Flea Collars Work

The fleas are driven away from the animal by an electric-compressional wave transducer. The wires, transducer and battery are all held in a case that is carried on the collar. There is a dust screen located on the outside of the device that keeps small particles from entering.

Behind the dust screen, compressional wave energy is sent outward. The waves are usually aimed towards the ground underneath the animal. These waves bounce off the ground and radiate up towards the underbelly. These compressional waves are what repel the fleas. There usually are no waves sent upward, away from the animal. These waves would have nothing to bounce off of in order to radiate back towards the animal.

Getting Rid of Flees

Electronic flea collars do not kill fleas. This is one main problem with the device. The ultrasound frequency only scares the flea or pest away from the source of the sound. Only some electric flee collars have insecticide and pesticides in the collar, so it is unlikely that they will kill off the whole life cycle of the flea, such as larva and eggs.

This is a huge issue because 95% of fleas do not live on the animal host; they live in the carpets, under the floorboards and in the garden. These areas are the source for most flea infestation breakouts. An electronic frequency cannot spur these creatures out of the carpet or other areas of the house. You will need some kind of chemical for this problem.

Scientific Evidence

The main downfall for electronic flea collars is that there is no scientific evidence stating that they work as intended. All scientific tests have shown that there is no frequency that can simply cause bugs or pests to flee. Every electric flea collar manufacturer only uses testimonials to promote their product, but testimonials alone cannot prove something works. Although, there was a study conducted at Kansas State University in 2002 that concluded some pests do succumb to ultrasound frequencies overtime. The test results did not show any pests running or fleeing away from the source of the sound though. All test results showed slight alterations between the generations of the pests, but nothing more than that.