Often we think that we can only get rid of fleas if we use heavy duty insecticides. However, not everyone likes using chemicals on their pets, around their home, or indeed on themselves.
Personally, I don’t think that you can shift a heavy duty infestation of fleas without some chemical use, but I do think that natural products can play a part in complementing conventional flea treatments by repelling fleas and soothing the effects of flea bites. There is also one essential natural thing that you can’t do without if you want to rid your home of fleas: hard work!
This post is about:
- Natural products that help get rid of fleas
- Natural products that help soothe the effects of flea bites, on you and your pet.
Get Rid of Fleas Naturally
You don’t need to spend a fortune on flea products for treating your home. Yes, you can go out and buy flea bombs and foggers which can help shift fleas from your carpet quickly (if used properly and effectively) but did you know that you probably have several effective flea treatments around your home already.
- Baking Soda: sprinkle it around your carpet and leave it for a few hours, then hoover up. Find out more about baking soda and fleas.
- Salt: use it like baking soda above. You can combine the two (this is what I do – in my opinion it works!). Find out more about salt and fleas.
- Diatomaceous earth: OK, you may not have this around the house, but this naturally occurring rock can be sprinkled around on the carpets and pet bedding. Take care to buy the right kind and keep away from pets and children.
- Water: yes, water! Fleas don’t like extremes of temperature, so kill them with boiling or frozen water. Wash bedding at high temperatures. Freeze fabric items (eg soft toys) for 24 hours. Steam carpets, upholstery and drapes.
- Vacuum cleaner: It’s not 100% natural, but it is 100% chemical free and it is the best friend you have in getting rid of fleas from your home. Hoover every day during a flea infestation, every few days to keep them at bay. Dispose of your bags outside after each use.
Repel Fleas Naturally
Here are some ideas for repelling fleas from your pet, yourself and your home. I don’t claim that these ideas will kill fleas; they may help to make things less attractive to fleas.
- Garlic: eating garlic regularly can help to make you or your pet less palatable to fleas. Caution! Garlic can be toxic to dogs and should not be fed to cats. Find out how to give garlic safely to your pets.
- Eucalyptus oil: Fleas don’t like the smell of eucalyptus, so use it to your advantage. Don’t apply the oil directly to your pet, or allow it be be ingested. However, a few drops on the carpet, near bedding or diluted in a wash (keep out of eyes) can be helpful.
- Nematodes: Use nematodes (natural predators, available from garden centres) to kill off flea larvae in your backyard. Nematodes aren’t effective in all environments – moist, warm areas are best suited to them.
- Plants: Several plants have the reputation of repelling fleas, so try planting fleabane, chamomile, rosemary and basil in your yard.
Soothe Flea Bitten Skin
Try these natural ideas for treating flea bites; some work for your pet, others just for you.
- Healthy diet: Both you and your pet need a healthy balanced diet to heal bites and fight infection.
- Ice: Don’t try it on your pet, but for your skin, apply an ice pack wrapped in a tea towel to help reduce swelling and itching.
- Aloe Vera: A great natural healer.
- Tea Tree Oil: Use diluted to dab on flea bites.
- Oatmeal Shampoo: Use for your pet to soothe itchy skin – you can find more information here.
- Natural treatments are great for helping to keep fleas away.
- Natural treatments can help to soothe itchy flea bites and heal marks.
- Hard work and dedication are some of the best non-chemical defences against fleas!
Photo Credit: Salvatore Vueno/FreeDigitalPhotos.net