Dog Home Remedies For Fleas
Worrying about fleas on dogs? Fleas can be a huge problem for dog owners as they can go everywhere and often bite humans if given the chance. This is why as soon as the flea season starts – or as soon you note your pet frequently scratching – you should quickly take the steps to prevent the infestation.
What Is a Flea Infestation?
Flea infestation is a situation wherein you find your dog serving as a home to fleas. Since your dog lives in your house, this means that by extension, there are also fleas in YOUR home, probably lurking in the furniture or lolling around in the carpet while waiting for your dog to pass by so they can hitch a ride.
Flea and Ticks – What’s the Difference?
Understand that fleas and ticks are both parasites and may both be present at the same time in your dog. Ticks are a bit bigger and are known for carrying all kinds of diseases – including Lyme’s Disease. While they don’t often come in tandem, these two parasites have the same sources, so there’s a slight chance that if fleas are present, ticks are too.
Fortunately, some of the methods discussed here to get rid of fleas can also help remove ticks from your dog.
How Do Dogs Get Fleas?
Dogs can get fleas from various sources. In fact, you might be surprised to know that your dog can get fleas from your very own backyard. Here are the typical places where fleas usually come from before they hitch on your dog.
Interaction with Other Dogs
If you often bring your dog to doggie daycare or to the park, then there’s a good chance the dog got it from there. Fleas can easily jump from one dog to another and proceed to breed on their new host, resulting in an army of fleas in a short span of time. This is why it’s often a good idea to give your dog a thorough bath after coming home from daycare or from the park.
Unfortunately, this is not something you can do every time, especially if your dog goes outdoors more than once a week.
Groomers and Other Pet Places
Really, anywhere with lots of pet traffic can be ground zero for flea infestation. The groomers, pet boarding places, and even the vet’s office can all be possible sources of fleas. Now, many of these locations take cleaning seriously and often have their own methods of catching and preventing an outbreak of these parasites.
However, you can’t be too cautious – especially during the flea season. If you plan to board your dog for a period of time, it’s best to ask the boarders about their flea prevention practices and what they do in case there’s an outbreak.
Fleas transfer to dogs in search of food, but it’s not the only place where they can lay their eggs. They’re capable of adapting to the great outdoors, especially during the warm season. Fleas will lay their eggs on the ground and live there until an unsuspecting animal walks by for them to jump on. Unfortunately, many dogs love to roll on the ground, which makes the process of hitching a ride that much easier for fleas. Since it doesn’t make sense to overhaul or pave your backyard, methods to kill the fleas once they reside in your dog are often best.
Related: How to Identify Flea Eggs
Fleas Inside the House
Even the inside of your home isn’t safe from fleas. Understand that fleas can go for 12 hours without feeding – which means that they can easily jump off the dog and burrow into some other part of the house – like your bed, the carpet, or the furniture. The fleas themselves can enter into your home through various means – such as mice or through another rodent. Sometimes, you might even be their main source of transport. Once fleas come inside your home, you’ll need to do a more thorough clean in order to get rid of them completely.
Symptoms of Fleas on Dogs
Irritation on the Skin
If an insect bites you, your skin turns a splotchy red color and there’s a definite pattern where the area gets irritated. Dogs also have this reaction so if you part your dog’s hair, you’ll find these red splotches showing where the flea bit them. Often, the area can get so itchy that the dog may open up a wound due to constant scratching.
Without looking at their skin, you’ll also notice signs of irritation by the constant scratching or biting of the dog, which signals itchiness.
In the bad cases of flea infestation, your dog will start to have paler gums. This is a sign of blood loss or anemia as the flea starts to suck in more than what the host can provide. Do not let the infestation get to this point.
Home Remedies for Fleas on Dogs
Apple Cider Vinegar Spray
A combination of 6 parts of ACV and 4 parts of water can turn into an excellent spray for dogs to drive away the fleas. The beauty here is that even as the vinegar drives away the fleas, it can also promote the health of your dog’s fur and scalp. The ease of its application also means you can spray daily – and perhaps spritz your furniture, bed, and other places too where fleas can be residing. The ACV will not produce any kind of odor and will actually freshen up the place.
This works in the same way as Apple Cider Vinegar. You can also prepare it, in the same way, using the lemon juice and the peels of the lemon.
Another cool way of using lemon is by adding it to your dog’s bathwater. Squeeze around two cups of lemon juice and add them to your dog’s bathwater. Let your dog stay in the water for a few minutes before starting to bathe him using his regular shampoo.
Apple Cider Vinegar in their Drink
You can also use ACV as a supplement. It can be added to the water using 1 teaspoon of ACV for every 4 cups of water. Note that some dogs will not like the taste of the water so if this is the case, you might want to skip this method altogether. Adding ACV in too little amounts may not have any effect on the fleas but if you’re aiming to improve your dog’s overall health, just a few drops will help.
Flea bites continue to punish your dog – even after you have gotten rid of the fleas. For quick relief, apply Pet Hemp Company CBD oil on the affected areas in your dog’s body. CBD can also help repair your dog’s skin fast.
Fleas are recurring and pesky problems that require vigilance and quick remedies. Routinely check your dog for fleas to catch the infestation early. You can use a combination of methods discussed in this post. A dog free from fleas is a healthy, obedient, and happy dog!