by Jason Johnson
As a pet owner, my dogs are truly an extension of my family. Sometimes I prefer the company of my dogs to the company of boring humans even though they can’t say a word. This allows me to enjoy the sound of my own voice without any interruptions from annoying people expecting a two way conversation. They are such great listeners and they always agree with me so I don’t have to scream at anyone.
Anyway, because I love my dogs so much, anything that I deem an enemy of theirs immediately becomes an enemy of mine as well. The most formidable opponent we’ve fought to date would definitely have to be fleas. It was a team effort and a hard fought battle but with some proper research on the enemy and with me as their leader, it’s a battle that I can effectively say we’ve won.
Below are few natural, pet friendly flea control methods that could assist you getting rid of fleas on your property.
Eucalyptus is to fleas what natural sunlight is to me on a Sunday morning after a night out. They hate it. A good way to repel fleas is to plant a few eucalyptus trees in and around your house and garden. This will get rid of fleas before they decide to make your pets’ fur their permanent residence, and if you’re lucky, you’ll also be able to lure any stray koala bears into your garden. Koala bears are cute. I want a koala bear. (I wonder if they’re aggressive…?)
In the short term, you can purchase pure eucalyptus oil at your pharmacy, mix it with water in a spray bottle and spray around your house. This won’t attract any koala bears but your house will smell great.
Home Made Dog Collars
You could create your own dog collars as a flea control device. Soak a piece of natural fibre rope in in a combination of essential oils overnight: peppermint, rosemary, cedar and citronella oil work well. Once you have done this, allow to dry and try lightly around the dogs’ neck. If you are not comfortable with tying a rope around your dog’s neck, get a collar that would be able to absorb the oil and use that instead to help get rid of fleas.
Wintergreen oil is also a great natural flea repellent remedy for both fleas and their eggs. Simply mix ¼ tsp of wintergreen oil with water in a 330 ml spray bottle. Spray your entire house with the fine mist, including the carpets and bedding. Also wash your pets’ bedding in hot water to kill any eggs or existing fleas and then spray with the oil once the bedding has dried.
Who knew! I drink this when I have flu and always toss the leftovers down the drain. At least I can repurpose the vile mixture as a flea spray now. Try the recipe: simply halve six lemons and boil in water for about 5 to 10 minutes. Allow to steep in the water overnight and spray on your dog or cat and on their bedding as a DIY flea control method.
Nematodes are a wormlike creature that feasts on fleas. They are able to eat almost 90% of all fleas and flea larvae on your property. Microscopic nematodes come in a spray form, which you spray your garden and sandy patches of your property with, and the nematodes are free to thrive. They will then prey on sand fleas and their larvae. You have to be careful though as some nematodes are harmful to animals and plants. You should be able to pick the correct variety of nematodes at you local farming or gardening stores.
A few additional flea control tips to keep your house flea free:
Place dry eucalyptus leaves under your mattress, in your pillow cases as well as inside your duvet covers. You can also spray your pillows with the oil as a natural flea repellent. Not only will your bed be protected from fleas, your bed will smell fresh as well.
Potpourri including dry eucalyptus leaves and pods are also a great method of flea control. You can leave them in a flat tray or in a vase. You could even put them in stocking and hang them throughout your home to help get rid of fleas.
Have your pets dipped regularly. While giving your dog a bath every week is great, it doesn’t always protect against ticks and fleas. A good dip every once in a while is a good DIY flea repellent to ensure your pets are kept flea free and the fleas flee away!
See some more tips on how to get rid of fleas>