Flea Control

Here are some natural flea control ideas for your pet.

Fleas are a common problem with pet owners. People have been trying to get rid of fleas from the beginning of time. There are about 1,600 species of them. They have laterally flattened bodies with bristles and spines known as ctenidia. The legs are extremely powerful and it's been recorded that one flea actually jumped vertically 4 feet. They are about .08 of an inch long and the female just slightly larger. They are found pretty much everywhere in the world. The life span can be as long as 1 and 1/2 years. These nasty little creatures can go 6 months without eating.

The female flea drinks up to 15 times it's weight in blood. Then it starts to lay about 50 eggs a day. Then she starts feeding again and the process continues. At this rate she can lay 160,000 eggs in only 2 months! YUCK.

These eggs will drop off of the host and then hatch into larvae in 2 to 12 days.

Larvae eat dried blood, flea droppings, and other debris for 1 to 3 weeks. They develop into cocoons. The presence of a blood source stimulates them into hatching into young adults. And the process starts all over again.

My dog got a flea once after I brought her to the vets. I saw it crawling near the tip of her nose. Thank goodness she is all white and clipped or I may have missed it. I was able to grab it as it scurried on her nose then I put it in some water. You may not be able to see fleas on your pets, but you usually can find the flea dirt when you check them. Flea dirt is their waste and or dried blood. You will find tiny black specs on you pet. It looks like fine pepper. If you put it on a white paper towel and get it wet, it turns red. They like the neck, groin, rump, and near the tail most, but may be anywhere.

The best flea control is flea prevention. Now as a preventive measure, I rub my dogs with a few drops of lavender mixed in a few drops of carrier oil all over them before I expose them to other animals. Spraying with lavender water would also act as flea control or repellent.

Like ticks, fleas are nothing to ignore or take lightly, so it's important to get rid of fleas as quick as possible. Sometimes they carry tapeworm. Your pet can become infected after ingesting an infected flea. Fleas can bite your pet so much that pets may become anemic. Another problem is some animals and people are allergic to the bites. They may be scratching, biting themselves, itching, have hair loss, infected crusty sores and hot spots. The bubonic plague that killed so many people in Europe and Asia was caused by fleas. They also have caused typhus. They will go on people also. If you have itchy bites on your ankles, it may be flea bites. Many animals and people are allergic to flea saliva.

Some of the flea control products on the market are nasty. The worst environmental pollutants that harm pets are things well meaning owners do when they dip, spray, powder, collar and use flea shampoo on our furry friends. Read the labels. If they caution you to avoid contact with the skin , you shouldn't put it on them. If it's too nasty for humans to touch for a minute, it has to be bad for pets to have it dumped on them. Animals absorb toxins through the skin and inhale it. Some poor pets ingest this poison when they groom themselves. Flea collars and powders are so strong that some pets have permanent hair loss from them. This is why it is important to use safe, natural flea control. Fleas reproduce so fast, they become resistant to these poisons and we are killing ourselves and our pets. Most pet, house, and garden products contain one or more classes of insecticides, many which contain nerve poisons. Please use only safe products and do natural flea treatments. There are better ways to get rid of fleas now.

Some natural flea control items use chrysanthemum flowers that naturally contain pyrethrum. a lot of people are allergic to this. Cats are very sensitive to even very low doses. This should be avoided.

A bath will help with flea control. Take your safe natural flea shampoo, or any shampoo and lather around the neck of your pet before you fill the tub up completely. Or put a few drops of essential oil in any shampoo, or castile soap and lather this around the neck. Fill the bath so it's almost up to your pets neck. Fleas will quickly crawl up the neck of your pet as they try to escape from the water. Pick them off quickly and put them into a bowl of soapy water you have handy. They don't like water. But watch to make sure the fleas don't crawl into the nose and ears. Do this once a week until all the stages of the flea are done.

Basic flea control shampoo for pets with fleas.
12 ounces water
1 tablespoons of castile soap
2 drops of peppermint essential oil
2 drops of eucalyptus essential oil
2 drops of lavender essential oil
2 drops of rosemary essential oil
Or whatever ones you have of these essential oils. combine ingredients in a jar. Shake well. Dampen your pet. add enough shampoo to make a lather and work. Rinse off well.

For a variation of the above, you can add 2 ounces aloe vera in replacement of that 2 ounces of water. This will help soothe the skin.

Brush and comb your dog or cat. Pet stores carry a special comb that traps the fleas for easy disposal. Put a sheet down where you groom and then wash the sheet after in very hot water.

To change a normal shampoo into one that will help with flea control just add some essential oils to it. A few drops of lavender, pine, or eucalyptus will kill fleas. The ones that don't die will be very unhappy and will leave. And this is safe to use on our little furry friends.

Comb every day and you will remove eggs and or fleas. Keep a bowl of soapy water next to you to put the little nasties in that you catch. Flush the soapy water down the toilet when you are done.

This is a herbal tea that can be used as a rinse or sprayed onto your pet. Thinly slice a lemon with the peels on. Add a pint of boiling water , cover and let steep overnight. Strain and place in a spray bottle. Add several drops of lavender essential oil. Try this herbal lavender tea for flea control.

Lavender spray is lavender essential oil mixed with water. It acts as a flea repellent and is healing. I put about 15 drops in a small spray bottle and spray my dogs with this. They like the smell and it relaxes them. I am currently spraying a hot spot one of my dogs has after a sting she received. It's healing well. So this will help heal the bites your poor little pet has already.

Herbal flea powder is a flea control that can be safely applied to your pet. Some pet stores have them. Or you can make your own by mixing equal parts of all or any of the following herbs you can find. ( Eucalyptus, fennel, yellow dock, wormwood, rue, rosemary and lavender). Weekly or several times a week in a bad infestation, sprinkle a small amount of the powder on the pet's coat and brush backward to get it worked in. Pay special attention to the neck, back and belly. Make sure you avoid getting it in their eyes. Your pets fleas will start leaving your pet. Catch the fleas and put them in a bowl of water you have handy or put your pet outside so the pests don't end up in the house.

Herb Flea control powder 1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon each of ground dried eucalyptus, rosemary, and lavender

Flea powder 2 1/4 cup of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon orange oil Don't use this on cats. other options is to add lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, or rosemary essential oil.

For dogs only citrus lotion This will help repel fleas and soften the fur.
Cut up 4 or 5 lemons and/or oranges.
6 cups of water
1 teaspoon glycerine
Simmer the fruit for a few hours, keep adding water to make up for what evaporates. Cool and strain. You can rub this on the fur. This may be refrigerated for one week. Or freeze some in ice cube trays and take out as needed.

Flea rubs Rub on your pets. To 1/2 cup of olive oil add 1/2 teaspoon of one of a combination of the lavender , rosemary, or eucalyptus essential.

Herbal flea collars are becoming more popular these days. As a flea control they are safe and easy. So check your local pet store or natural food stores. They are infused with herbal oils and can actually be recharged so they last longer.

Flea collars. Place a couple drops of repellent essential oil on a cloth collar. Replenish oil weekly or as needed. Some good choices is orange oil (not for cats) rosemary, eucalyptus and of course my favorite, lavender. I did this with lavender for a nervous dog and it helped.

Some of the best flea control things you can do is to get your pet as healthy as you can. Fleas are less likely to go on healthy pets. Give your dogs doggy vitamin pills to boost their immune system.

Brewers yeast has been used successfully in reducing the numbers of fleas. You can rub it on the pets coat. This can also be fed to your pet. Use anywhere from one teaspoon to two tablespoons of yeast with your pets meal. Feed this according to the size of your pet.

A sprinkling of zinc (crushed tablet or powder) will help boost your pets immunity system. A healthy pet is less likely to get infested.

Garlic is disliked by Fleas and ticks. Sounds like they are like vampires in more than one way. Give your pet fresh raw in the food. Powdered doesn't work. Cats can have about one eighth teaspoon a day for no more than two weeks because it can cause some type of anemia. Dogs over 50 pounds can have as much as 2 teaspoons a day. Garlic is also a blood thinner.

I found much controversy on garlic safety for cats and dogs. Some say you can use it, others say no. One person said it is fine as long as it's kyolic garlic, and another said she has used it for years on sick cats and dogs with much success. She cooks it first. Then there is all the pet treats that have garlic in them.

Kyolic Garlic has been successfully used for flea control. Use
For toy breeds or cats use
2 tablets of Kyolic super formula 101 or 1/2 teaspoon of liquid kyolic, 3 times a day for a week.
Then once a day after that for maintenance.

For medium sized dogs.
4 tablets Kyolic super formula 101 or one teaspoon of of liquid, 3 times a day for one week.
Then 4 tablets or one teaspoon once a day for maintenance.

For large dogs
8 tablets of Kyolic super formula 101 or 1 tablespoon , 3 times a day for a week.
Then 6 or 8 tablets or one tablespoon daily of the liquid for maintenance.

This should get rid of intestinal parasites too. Garlic is also has good natural antibiotic properties. The decision to use it is yours. Not even the experts can decide and agree on this one.

Bites, inflamed areas, and sore spots can be treated by cleaning the area with a mild soap and clipping the hair in that spot. Apply aloe vera, vitamin E, black or green tea. A drop of lavender and/or chamomile essential oil will soothe the bite.

Pennyroyal leaves rubbed on the fur of pets is said to be effective. The essential oil of pennyroyal can be dangerous, but the leaves are said to be safe.

Citrus, sweet orange, or bitter orange has been used for flea dip. Veterinarians have reported toxic reactions in pets treated with this dip. Cats are more sensitive than dogs. It is particularly hazardous to kittens. So avoid using these on your pets, why take a chance when there are safer ones you can use.

It's not enough to just kill the ones on the animal. You have to treat the yard and home in order to get flea control.

I hope this helps you and gives you some ideas to try. Good luck. :)

Return from flea control to Aromatherapy for Dogs.