Safe Ways to Protect Pets From Fleas and Ticks
Fleas and ticks can be a real problems for dogs and cats, but so can the chemicals used to treat and repel them. Many pet owners prefer to avoid potentially harmful chemicals to protect pets and the family members who snuggle with them. Here are several holistic ways to rid your pets and home of these pests.
Homemade Flea Powder
To both repel fleas and ticks and remove any that may already be on your pet, try this recipe. Mix together:
• 1 cup of food grade diatomaceous earth
• 1/2 cup of neem powder
• 1/2 cup of yarrow powder
• 20 drops of eucalyptus essential oil
Rub the mixture on your dog or cat and then brush them to ensure the mixture makes contact with their skin. The diatomaceous Earth dries out the pest’s exoskeletons to kill them while the neem powder deters pests and kills their larvae.
The yarrow will soothe your pet’s skin as will the eucalyptus oil, which is also an effective repellent. If your pet has an active flea infection, use this powder every other day until the fleas are gone. You can also sprinkle the mixture on your pet’s bedding and then vacuum it up. If you’re working with a cat, leave out the essential oil as cats sometimes react badly to these oils.
Homemade Flea Spray
A simple and safe flea spray for both dogs and cats is apple cider vinegar. Simply dilute some vinegar in water and spray it on your pet daily. Pay special attention to the areas behind their ears and at the base of their tails, as these are favorite flea spots.
According to PetMD, a bath may be all your pet needs to get rid of fleas. Fleas crawl around your pet but don’t hold on that tightly, making a dunk in the tub a great way to get rid of them safely. A rinse will work or you can use a mild pet shampoo or dish soap if desired.
After the bath, brush your pet thoroughly with a flea comb to get rid of any stragglers. A bath won’t get rid of ticks if you don’t add soap, but it will give you a chance to get your hands on your pet and find any that may be there so you can remove them.
In The Yard
One way to prevent fleas and ticks and protect pets is to prevent them in the yard where he plays. Ladybugs and small worms call nematodes can be purchased for release in your yard. Both are beneficial insects, with ladybugs eating fleas and nematodes eating flea larvae. The number of ticks in your yard, too, can be reduced simply with frequent mowing. Ticks like tall grass and weeds, so keeping weeds at bay and grass low to the ground will limit their numbers naturally.
When going for walks or playing in the yard, you can protect pets with leg warmers, Your dog or cat will look they stepped right out of the eighties, but these fashion accessories cover the legs and belly of the animals, which is where most pets pick up ticks. A simple Google for dog or cat leg warmers will present you with a surprisingly large number of options.
All of these remedies are effective ways to solve flea and tick problems naturally and without harsh chemicals. Each will help by itself, but combining them into a multifaceted approach will be the most effective course of action. As is true whenever introducing your pet to new medications or treatments, you may wish to consult your veterinarian before trying a home remedy.