Fight Fleas Naturally!

My little fur kid, Chester. We adopted him from BARC Houston Oct, 2015. He was only 8 weeks old and had 3 little brothers which we wished we had been able to adopt too. We picked Chester because he wouldn’t stop kissing (licking) my son’s hand; we felt in love with him immediately!

 

Chester is a super loving, face licking, dog treat lover, ball aficionado dog who makes the perfect companion for my 10-year-old son.  Together they play, eat, sleep, and wrestle every day, these two are inseparable.

Chester is an inside dog. He goes out to potty and to play, sometimes we take him to the dog park, sometimes we left him in the backyard but he is mostly inside with his humans (us). However during our stay in Colorado this past holidays we left Chester in Texas. He stayed with my fiancé and his two other dogs, Charlie and Adarai.

During his stay Chester got to be outside more for longer periods of time. He made new friends, he discovered new places, tastes, and textures and he engaged in a lot of puppy play time with Adarai (who is about his same age).

I am sure he had a ton of doggie fun BUT, he came back home infested with fleas. All that outdoor playing does that to you… sad face. It was so bad that even one of his eyes was swollen from which I presume was flea bites too close to his eyelids. My poor Chester. I was mortified! I had to get rid of those nasty little things crawling all over him, so as soon as he got back home I jumped into action.

I take my pet’s wellbeing very seriously so this is what we did to get him back to his normal self:

  1. First I gave him a bath with an oatmeal based shampoo, specifically I used Oster Oatmeal Naturals Insect Guard Pet Shampoo*. I gave him a very long bath and so many many of the fleas die away. I shampooed him twice letting the shampoo sit there for a little and scrubbing all areas, especially behind his ears and his groin area.

* About Oster Oatmeal Naturals Insect Guard Pet Shampoo is proudly made of all natural, pH balanced, biodegradable ingredients that are 100 percent free of alcohol, dyes and parabens. The Insect Guard formulation provides a natural alternative to medicated flea and tick shampoos to repel fleas, ticks and mosquitoes. A unique blend of citronella extract, clove oil and lemongrass extract naturally guards against insects

  1. Second I used peppermint essential oil. I did a lot of research before jumping into this one. Please note essential oils and cats don’t mix so don’t use this on cats. I found out on my research that a  natural way to control parasites, including fleas, is by using peppermint and rosemary sprays, lemon sprays, and vinegars. Peppermint is considered as a multipurpose flea control remedy which is natural, safe and effective. It is also known to soothe the skin irritations and itching on the pet’s body. HOW TO: dilute it in water! never use it without diluting as essential oils are concentrated. For peppermint potion mix 25 drops of essential peppermint oil* with 1 cup of water. Put the solution a spray bottle for easier application. Spray all over your pet and rub or comb. No need to rinse, just leave it in and enjoy the lovely fresh smell.

* About peppermint oil: This oil works differently than other oils in that the smell isn’t what repels fleas and ticks. Peppermint is actually a sort of torture device for pests and insects. It is one of the most effective octopamine (think of an insect version of human adrenaline) blockers in existence, causing the parasites’ central nervous system to break down. Their heart rate, movement, behavior, and metabolism are hindered to the point of death. While all this is happening at microscopic level, your dog smells super fresh!! You are fighting a war in style, mess free and smelling delicious! 

  

**Warning: Essential oils that contain phenols are particularly toxic to cats and cause liver damage. These include oregano, thyme, eucalyptus, clove, cinnamon, bay leaf, parsley, and savory. It’s a good idea not to share any food containing these herbs and spices with your pets.

  1. As a last step, and because I wanted to be 100% sure of eradication, I went to his vet and got him Comfortis for dogs. (You need prescription) Comfortis® (spinosad) is the first FDA-approved, chewable, flavored tablet that kills fleas and prevents flea infestations on dogs for a full month. It starts killing fleas within 30 minutes, last 30 days. It isn’t toxic or messy like those (rather ineffective I may say) drops and it gives you complete peace of mind.

One day later Chester’s eye was back to normal and so was he. Happy and itch free! I keep some of the peppermint oil mix handy, and I spray him once a week. I also spray his sleeping area.

I have not seen a single one of those nasty fleas!

Happy dog = happy Humans!

Xoxo

Jihane

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23 thoughts on “Fight Fleas Naturally!

  1. oh goodness fleas are terrible. I never would have known how to get rid of them. It’s nice to know you can do it without a ton of chemicals!

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  2. I do all of the above with my furbabies! Except for comfortis… I switched to the Nexguard chewable because it also protects against ticks… My vet neglected to tell me the comfortis wouldn’t and I was mortified to find them on my dogs after treating. I haven’t had any problems with the Nexguard though! Just something to consider if you live in an area where ticks are a problem.

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  3. Chester is adorable!! I had no idea that essential oils could be used for fleas! I guess that orange is also bad/toxic for cats! I found that out when I was trying to make natural household cleaner. Great post!

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  4. What a fabulous treatment! I need to look into that pill you mentioned for our little fur balls but I am not sure what the options for cats are. Thanks for getting my wheels turning.

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  5. Awwww! He’s a cutie!! I am getting my pup on Feb. 9th and I am soooooo excited! I can’t wait to have him home with us! This is great since I plan on taking my pup out quite often and also I know he will be interacting a lot with other pups throughout his life. Great post! Thanks for sharing! This will really come in handy later!

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