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Home Flea Treatments – what works, what doesn’t.

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It’s that time of year when the dreaded little critters are running rife! Fleas! Those pesky parasites are the bane of every pet owner’s life. When you finally come to the task of tackling fleas in your home and want to discover natural home flea treatments it can be a nightmare to find what works and what doesn’t.

So, let’s review some of the best methods we’ve used and found work. I’m caveating any advice I give with this – if you are concerned and have an outbreak, consult your vet.

selective focused of brown dog lying on sofa

Photo by Robert Larsson

Natural Flea treatments / Home Remedies.

Now, natural treatments and home remedies are a tricky business. Some solutions work and some are old wive’s tales. It’s important to note that the remedies we recommend are based on treating your home. There are few home remedies that you can use on your pet, and I wouldn’t recommend you add concoctions to your pet without seeking a vet’s opinion. Ok, so we’ve got that out of the way, let’s look at some.

Using Lemon spray.

Doesn’t work.

Now, this is a weird one. When I first came across this, I couldn’t work out why this was used. My best guess is that citric acid will deter the fleas. So, I tried it out and surprise, surprise, it didn’t work. Maybe I didn’t do it right, but I still can’t figure out why it would work. I used chopped lemon and water in a spray bottle which did nothing. Fleas can’t smell, nor is there enough citric acid in that solution to cause any damage to the parasites.

black long coated small dog on white and gray checkered armchair

Photo by Katja Rooke

Bicarbonate of Soda.

Does work.

Bicarbonate of soda is an interesting home flea treatment. I have tried this and did see an improvement. The idea with BoS is the powder will dry out eggs and larvae of fleas, which does have some merit, after around 30 mins you give your furniture and floors a quick hoover and dispose of the bag immediately and boom you’ve reduced your flea issue. A little thing I did was add salt to the mix to give it a little boost.

Dish Soap and water.

Doesn’t work.

This is another idea that I can’t quite figure out. Putting dish soap on your furniture might stop fleas for a bit but it won’t do your furniture one little bit! It can damage and won’t catch the eggs or larvae hidden in the cracks also fleas can survive being wet and the dish soap might slow them down but I can’t figure out how a little bit of spritz will help. If you want to use this method the best way to use it is by having a small ramakin with dish soap and water – brushing your dog with a flea comb and putting the fleas you catch in the solution to kill them off.

Hoovering to battle fleas

Does work.

This might seem like a no-brainer but hoovering does do the trick. However, if you are hoovering you must make it a deep clean, get into all the cracks, hoover your sofa, and get behind tough areas and under rugs. When you’re done put the bag or contents in the bin. Nice and simple and a super effective flea treatment.

brown and black short coated small dog on bathtub

Photo by Justin Jason

Showers/Baths

Does work.

So end of the list, showering! Giving your dog a nice shower or bath really helps tackle fleas. Fleas hate water, even though they can survive for around 30 mins in water, they still aren’t fans of the wet stuff. You can use natural flea shampoos on your dog, ones that use chamomile, or other natural ingredients but the real trick is water and a flea comb. If your dog loves being in the water you can take as long as you need to go through their coat and pick the little blighters out, however, if your dog isn’t a fan of the water then do shorter bouts in the tub. As long as you are getting them and keeping your dog stress free then that’s the best method.

Conclusion

Fleas are an absolute nuisance. End of. The best defence is by using a spot-on flea treatment and regular showers. If you are concerned about your dog and fleas, or your dog is having an allergic reaction to flea bites you MUST CONSULT YOUR VET! The best defence against fleas is preventative, minimise taking your dog on long grass as this is the birthplace of flea and tick infestations, keep your dog’s flea treatments up to date, and invest in a flea comb and tick remover because you never know when you need to run the comb through their coat.

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