Health

Natural Flea Treatment For Dogs: Rescue Your Dog From Fleas

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Author: Jacob Kay

Fleas are a common issue for many pet owners, especially if they own a dog. Because, these small, wingless insects quickly infest dogs and eventually cause different health problems such as skin irritation, allergic reactions, or transmission of other diseases. 

The majority of flea treatments in the UK involve using chemicals, of course, there are clinical treatments to deal with this issue, but, many owners prefer taking a natural route to solve this problem. So, this article will list down some of the best natural flea treatments for dogs.  

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Natural Flea Treatment For Dogs

There are many natural treatments you can leverage for dealing with fleas. The basic method is to keep the place clean. But, how will you identify that your dog has fleas? Here are some of the signs to verify that your dog has fleas in the fur:

  • Restlessness or irritability: Fleas can make dogs restless or irritable, causing them to have difficulty settling down or sleeping.
  • Presence of flea dirt: Dogs with fleas may have flea dirt on their skin or fur, which looks like black specks or pepper flakes and indicates the presence of fleas.
  • Visible fleas or flea bites: Fleas or flea bites may be visible on a dog’s skin or fur, especially in areas with thin fur or exposed skin such as the ears, groin, or belly.
  • Excessive scratching, biting, or licking: Dogs with fleas may scratch, bite, or lick excessively due to the itchy and irritated skin caused by flea bites.
  • Red, inflamed skin: Flea bites can cause the skin to become red and inflamed, particularly in areas that are more sensitive or have thin fur.
  • Hair loss or thinning: Flea infestations can lead to hair loss or thinning, especially if the dog has been scratching or biting at the affected area.

Natural flea treatment for the dogs: How to get rid of dog fleas home remedies

home-remedies-for-fleas-on-dogs
Image by: Tatomm / istockphoto

Now, if your dog is indicating any of these signs you need to address this immediately. You can consider the following home remedies for fleas on dogs:

1. Grooming

  • Use a flea comb, which is a useful tool for catching and disposing of fleas in soapy water.
  • Start by brushing your dog’s head, neck, tail, and underbelly region, as these are areas with high levels of friction and where fleas tend to gather.
  • Brush your dog’s coat regularly to distribute natural oils, making it more challenging for fleas to cling to their fur

2. Bathing

Before bathing your dog, many owners wonder – can you use human shampoo on dogs? The answer is generally no. Human shampoo is meant for our pH level and can be harsh on a dog’s sensitive skin

  • Place your dog in the bath and wet them with warm water.
  • Apply the gentle dog shampoo to your dog’s coat and lather it up, make sure to cover all areas, including under their legs and belly.
  • Let the shampoo settle on your dog’s coat for a few minutes to drown any fleas and wash away their eggs.
  • Rinse your dog with warm water to remove all the shampoo. Towel dry your dog as much as possible, and then let them air dry in a well-ventilated area.
  • Comb your dog’s coat with a flea comb to remove any remaining fleas or eggs.
  • Repeat the process as necessary, but not too frequently as over-bathing can dry out your dog’s skin.

3. Vacuuming

  • Identify areas where fleas may be present: carpets, bedding, and furniture. Afterwards, vacuum these areas regularly to help eliminate fleas.
  • Pay extra attention to areas where your dog spends most of their time, such as their bed, crate, or favourite resting area.
  • Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to trap and remove fleas, eggs, and nymphs.
  • Dispose of the vacuum bag immediately after use to prevent fleas from re-entering your home.

4. Wash the Bedding

  • Wash bedding and other fabric items frequently in hot water with a mild detergent. This will help in killing fleas and their eggs.
  • Set your washing machine to a high temperature for effectiveness. Further, if possible, dry the items in a high-heat setting. This helps to kill any remaining fleas or eggs that remain after the washing cycle.
  • If your dog has a favourite blanket or toy that is not washable then place it in a plastic bag. Afterwards, take the plastic bag and put it in the freezer for several hours.
  • Once the freezing is done, take that item out of the plastic bag. Shake the bag to remove any dead fleas present.

Natural Flea Treatment For Dogs: Natural Remedies For Dog Fleas

In this section, we will see different natural elements that one can use to get rid of fleas on dog. These methods leverage natural elements that are not harmful to both dog and their owner. Following are some of the natural flea repellent for dogs:

#1 Apple Cider Vinegar

To naturally repel fleas from your dog, try using apple cider vinegar. Simply mix equal parts of water and apple cider vinegar and spray the solution on your dog’s coat. The strong scent of apple cider vinegar is known to repel fleas and ticks effectively.

#2 Lemon Juice

Another natural flea treatment for dogs is lemon juice. Boil a lemon in water and let it steep overnight. The next day, pour the solution into a spray bottle and apply it to your dog’s coat, being careful to avoid the eyes and nose.

#3 Essential Oils

Using essential oils like lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus can also work as a natural flea repellent for dogs. Mix a few drops of essential oil with water in a spray bottle and apply it to your dog’s coat. Not only do these oils repel fleas, but they also leave your dog smelling fresh.

#4 Neem Oil

Diluted neem oil is a natural insecticide that can effectively kill fleas and ticks. To use, apply it to your dog’s coat, leave it on for 30 minutes, and then rinse it off. Neem oil is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties that can soothe your dog’s skin.

#5 Diatomaceous Earth

A natural powder made from fossilized algae, diatomaceous earth is an abrasive substance that can dehydrate fleas and ticks, effectively killing them within a few hours. Simply sprinkle it on your dog’s coat or in their bedding.

#6 Rosemary

Boiling rosemary in water for 30 minutes, allowing it to cool, and then pouring it into a spray bottle can create an effective and safe natural flea repellent for dogs. The pleasant scent of rosemary makes it a favourite among many pet owners.

#7 Brewer’s Yeast

Incorporating brewer’s yeast into your dog’s diet by sprinkling it on their food daily can help prevent flea infestations. Brewer’s yeast contains thiamine, which produces an odour that repels fleas naturally.

#8 Cedarwood

Mix a few drops of cedarwood essential oil with water in a spray bottle and apply it to your dog’s coat. Cedarwood is a natural insect repellent with a pleasing scent that is safe for use on dogs.

#9 Coconut Oil

Massaging coconut oil into your dog’s coat is another effective natural flea repellent. With its antibacterial and antifungal properties, coconut oil can soothe your dog’s skin and prevent flea infestations.

#10 Salt

Sprinkling salt on your carpets, floors, and furniture and letting it sit for a few hours before vacuuming can naturally kill fleas by dehydrating them. This simple and effective method can help keep your home free of fleas.

So, using any of these elements you can prepare your own natural flea spray to get rid of fleas on the dog.

Now, it’s obvious for you to think – Is there a way to prevent the infestation of fleas? The short answer – is yes. But, these are just precautionary measures and not a guaranteed solution.

Precautionary measures to avoid fleas on dogs

Following are some of the steps you can consider to stop the spreading of fleas on dogs.

One of the most effective and basic methods is to make a homemade flea spray.

Necessary ingredients – 1 cup of white vinegar, 1 quart of water, 1 spray bottle

home-remedies-for-dog-fleas
Image by: Fetrinka / istockphoto

Instructions

1: Mix the white vinegar and water in the spray bottle.

2: Shake well to combine the ingredients.

3: Spray your dog with the homemade flea spray, making sure to cover all areas of their body, except for their face.

4: Avoid spraying the solution in your dog’s eyes or mouth.

If you follow these instructions chances are that fleas would not hassle your dog. However, if your dog is already infested with fleas, you have to get rid of them instantly and prevent them from spreading throughout the house.

Following are some of the steps you can consider to stop the spreading of fleas across the household.

  • Vacuum your carpets, furniture, and curtains to remove fleas and their eggs
  • Wash your dog’s bedding in hot water to kill any fleas
  • Treat your house with a flea spray or fogger to kill any remaining fleas
  • Use flea-prevention products on all pets in your home to prevent future infestations

FAQs

What kills fleas immediately on dogs?

Getting rid of fleas on dogs is challenging. If you are looking to kill them instantly, then you can try ducking them in hot, soapy water. Further, if you try to whip or flush these slippery insects, they may surprise you with their jumping expertise. They are also amazing at escaping so, you need to ensure that they don’t leave.

What smell do fleas hate?

Cedarwood, Peppermint Oil, Citronella, Eucalyptus, Geranium, Lavender, Lemon, and Tea Tree Oil are some of the smells that fleas hate. You can use sprays that contain any of these content to repel fleas.

What health problems can fleas cause in dogs?

Flea Infestations can cause fatal health issues to dogs and other pets as well. When these bothersome fleas bite, they can cause several health problems such as flea allergy dermatitis, tapeworms, anaemia, and bartonellosis. In addition, they can also cause itchy skin, spread other diseases and even bite humans. 

What natural flea repellents are effective?

Citronella, eucalyptus, peppermint, rosemary and tea tree are some of the substances which will naturally repel fleas. If your dog doesn’t mind a spray bottle, you can dilute a few drops of your chosen essential oil into approximately 400-500ml of water and spray it onto your dog’s coat.

Natural Flea Treatment For Dogs – Concluding Remarks

Fleas can spread between animals and throughout the environment. Once they have established an infestation it gets difficult for dog owners to get rid of them. Hence, it is important for pet owners to take proactive measures to prevent and control flea infestations in their dogs.

So, regular bathing, grooming, and cleaning can help keep fleas at bay, while flea prevention products and natural repellents can further protect your furry friend. In the case of an infestation, taking immediate action by vacuuming, washing bedding, and using flea treatments can effectively eliminate the problem.

Regular grooming and bathing are proactive ways to control fleas. But how often should you groom your dog? Consult your veterinarian to determine the ideal grooming frequency for your dog’s specific needs

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About
Jacob Kay
Jacob Kay is a Veterinary Advisor and Editor at WWD. He’s also a dog lover and has two pet dogs of his own. He has extensive knowledge in the field of veterinary medicine and is always happy to share his insights with others.

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