Flea prevention using chemicals and natural remedies
What are the best flea medications out there and are there any natural remedies that work? What natural ways can you use to prevent them altogether; before they spread throughout your dog’s environment and your home?
These are very common questions that just about every dog owner asks when trying to keep their pets and homes flea-free.
Fleas are like roaches – they have been around for a very long time. There doesn’t seem to be a way to eliminate permanently. Every year, with every new season, the fleas like to come around for a long, annoying stay. And if you live in the tropical areas then they pretty much stay year-round.
So what can you do about it?
Your options to counter the flea problem vary. Here are the most common ways to deal with them:
- Veterinary prescribed flea medications
- Over the counter flea spot treatments
- Insecticide dip
- Flea collar
- Flea-fighting shampoo
- Flea powder
Unfortunately, just about all of these solutions contain harsh chemicals which may or may not work well for your situation. And the fact that some dogs are sensitive to many of these applications brings on its own additional complications. Keep in mind too that the age of your pet, be it puppy or an older dog, will determine what you can use.
Flea advice for puppies
Do not use flea collars on puppies (in general) and powder is usually out of the question if they are not even eight weeks old yet.
Senior dogs and chemicals
Use caution with chemicals on senior dogs. Why? Because just like people, as dogs age they become extremely sensitive to chemicals. Old canines tend to get dermatitis too.
Over the years Brewer’s Yeast has been given to dogs to ward off fleas. You can take 1/2 teaspoon and mix it into your dog’s food, then increase that dose over time. Fleas dislike the yeast. Brewer’s yeast is also full of vitamins that are good for your dog.
Garlic is also a good alternative for flea prevention but you have to be creative with it and somehow grind or mix into food or treats for your dog. It should be fresh garlic, not powder or processed.
Your vet can provide spot treatments that kill fleas instantly after biting. You can also get some good over the counter options. Just keep in mind that many of these products may work on some dogs, but provide no benefit to others.
Try this chemical-free soak
Wash your dog with normal shampoo, something gentle, and then change the water so that his entire body can be soaking for about 15 minutes.
Beforehand, mix of one teaspoon of the herb rosemary in boiled water in about one gallon. Let it cool, then add to the dog’s water soak. Once the 15 minutes are up, wash the dog once again with a gentle shampoo and use the same rosemary water to rinse. It smells nice and does work.
Some people have used pennyroyal with good results in this soak treatment.