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Fleas
Natural Cures

How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Fleas in Pets

Jul 29, 2016


Apple cider vinegar is Earth Clinic's top home remedy for fleas in dogs and cats! Apple cider vinegar is much, much cheaper than prescription and over the counter anti-flea medications. More importantly, it is much safer for your pet.

Four Ways to Use Vinegar for Fleas in Pets

Topical Spray for Your Pet's Fur

The most popular and most simple way to treat your dog or cat for fleas is with a simple spray of apple cider vinegar and water. Mix equal parts of vinegar and water into a spray bottle. (You can find empty spray bottles at dollar stores or grocery stores.) Spray your pet daily with the vinegar spray. Cover his eyes to avoid getting vinegar into the eyes. It will sting!

Some of our readers have found that all that is needed for flea prevention is some apple cider vinegar to the back of the neck each day. Use a cotton ball to apply some vinegar and water solution to the neck. (Use 1/2 vinegar and 1/2 water.)

Vinegar Spray for Fleas in the House

If you have fleas in your house you can make a similar spray for your baseboards and even your furniture. For this spray, plain white vinegar is fine. Mix equal parts of water and vinegar and put into a spray bottle. Spray furniture (test an inconspicuous area first) daily or as needed.

Internal Use of Apple Cider Vinegar for Flea Control

Apple cider vinegar can be given to pets internally for flea control. It can be added to your pet's water bowl or mixed in his food. Add 1-2 tablespoons of raw and organic apple cider vinegar to each quart of water for your pet. If you pet won't drink the water with vinegar in it, decrease the amount. Some have found that very little vinegar is needed to keep their pets flea free.

To mix apple cider vinegar with food, try 1 tablespoon for a large dog, 1/4 teaspoon for a small cat, etc.

You may find that other nagging health issues with your pet clear up when you add apple cider vinegar to his diet. Apple cider vinegar is a common natural remedy for a variety of pet health conditions.

Apple Cider Vinegar Bath for Fleas

If you have a cat or dog with a serious flea infestation, you may need to begin with an apple cider vinegar bath for your pet. Add 2 cups of apple cider vinegar to the bath water and wash your pet thoroughly. You will see lots of fleas coming out into the water!

Have you tried apple cider vinegar for fleas for your dogs and cats? Please share your story with us!  And read on to see the creative ways our readers have used apple cider vinegar to treat fleas in their four legged friends!




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Posted by Terryann (Springfield, Oregon) on 07/16/2016
1 out of 5 stars

I spray my dog every single time we go outside or go walk and fleas jump right on him even when he is still wet with ACV/water spray. I am beside myself … he has a flea allergy. It is ruining our lives, no exaggeration. I spend most of my time fighting fleas. Please help?

Replied by Suseeq
Sydney, Australia
07/16/2016
When you start out spraying Apple Cider Vinegar for fleas, spray every day for a week then every second day, then a top up once or twice a week.
Replied by Terryann
Springfield, Oregon
07/16/2016
I don't understand how that helps to put on less than I am already putting on???
Replied by Suseeq
Sydney, Australia
07/17/2016
Terry Ann, is your dog long hair? If so, you will have to saturate coat and try brushing through.
Replied by Loly
Florida
07/17/2016
You might want to look into garlic pills. it takes about 3 weeks for the pills to permeate all tissue. I know a gentleman who breeds Scottish terriers and that's all he uses. Not one flea on them. Also don't be afraid of garlic for dogs, it does give hemolytic anemia but only in high doses. You'd have to give about 20 garlic cloves to be harmful. It's made by springtime bug off garlic. I just put my Airedale on it a couple weeks ago.
Replied by Terry Journey
Springfield, Or
07/17/2016
My vet told me to stop using garlic as he says it builds up in the system and can cause problems…that you do NOT have to give large doses.
Replied by Terryjourney
Springfield, Or
07/17/2016
I have saturated it many times. It does not deter them, not at all.
Replied by Suseeq
Sydney, Australia
07/18/2016
What a resistant lot of fleas you have: tea tree eucalyptus or penny royal oil, add to shampoo and bathe once a week, a tea made from lemon, lime, pour one pint boiling water over them, put a lid on leave overnight and spray on animal and let dry. You can add lavender as well if you want. Please report back
Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
07/19/2016
Hey Terryann,

If the fleas are impervious to the smell of the ACV, you might try a cedar oil spray or other insect repelling essential oils.

Ideas:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar – The smell of vinegar alone, is enough to repel a mosquito, but apple cider vinegar is more than just a repellent. It is a natural conditioner to the skin and hair. It is also great for adding shine and luster to the coat. A really great way to utilize ACV to repel bugs, is to steep apple cider vinegar in rosemary, lavender, neem leaf, and/or other bug repelling herbs for two weeks, shaking the jar daily. Strain herbs from the ACV and spray onto your dog. Allow to dry and do not rinse! Works great on people too and is safe on and around children as well.
  • Essential Oils – There are many essential oils that help repel all sorts of bugs and are safe to use in dog sprays! You can substitute these essential oils into your dog's homemade Flea & Tick spray, based off of what you have on hand. PLEASE REMEMBER – dogs should be thought of like babies when it comes to essential oils and the amount to use. Not only do they have sensitive noses but they also have smaller organs than we do. Some of the essential oils you can safely use on dogs for flea and tick prevention are: lavender, lemon, citronella, sage/clary sage, bergamot, cedarwood, lemon eucalyptus, lemongrass, peppermint, geranium, sweet orange, and rosemary.

Source: http://www.thehippyhomemaker.com/diy-natural-flea-tick-spray/


Posted by Crystal (Al) on 07/14/2016

I just have a question that I'm hoping someone can answer. I have both dogs and cats in my home. They all have fleas and we have been using the flea control stuff from the vet and it isn't working. I find this site and was wondering what's the difference between OACV and ACV? I have a bottle of ACV and I'm wondering if the ACV will work just as well as OACV on my pets to get rid of fleas. Thanks


EC: Hi Crystal,

OACV - organic apple cider vinegar. Most people on this site use organic acv for themselves or their pets if they can find it.

Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
07/14/2016
Hey Crystal,

You might consider a basic flea trap. Make a trap by using a small desk lamp with a regular watt bulb placed on the floor in the pet area. Put a white rimmed plate or dish under the lamp. Add water that has some dish soap added to it. Turn the lamp on over night and see what you catch. If you are infested you will see many black specks. This type of trap can clear out an infested room if you use it every night.

Replied by Patricia
Downsville
07/15/2016
24 Posts
I purchased a hockey puck size light with a cord attached and hung it from the wall outlet over a glass oven pan with Dawn dish soap. Someone said that the fleas can swim but the addition of soap makes them sink. I am presently sprinkling borax mixed with salt on the rugs and in the cracks of the wooden and vinyl tile floors. I am in the country (woods) and I've tried everything, diatomaceous earth (stopped when I found out it was not food grade - didn't want to have my little one eating it), baking soda, Cedarcide spray for a year now and still have fleas.

HOW DOES one get rid of every stinking flea when they lay sixty eggs a day and then they don't hatch right a way either?

The latest attempt is the borax. Will see what happens. And a new approach to combing: every time I see my little love scratch in an area (she has taken over the window sill over the sink so I have a mug of water handy on the counter and can quickly get the comb back into the water hopefully before a flea can jump and they do) I take the comb out of the Dish soap in water and comb there in that spot. That is my latest combing plan. Seems like it could work.

She would run from the comb so I started this approach and I think now she knows I am trying to stop the constant scratching. She I scratching less.

Replied by Tiffany
Cleveland, Ohio
07/16/2016
Have you tried diatomaceous earth?
Replied by Patricia
Downsville
07/16/2016
24 Posts
Yes. Diatomaceous earth, baking soda, cedarcide and still have fleas.

I read the instructions for the borax remedy from a link found on earth clinic. A second link she gave said that boric acid doesn't kill fleas and the larvae.

I am right in the middle of stripping the living room and closets and under all the furniture and leaving the borax over night.

Going to vacuum up tomorrow. the only thing I didn't do was the closet last time. Hope to move the computer table tomorrow too.

Problem is if there is just one flea left on my cat then I lose the fight.

Maybe the diatomaceous earth or baking soda do work because I was never as thorough as what I am doing now.

Also I found out the DE I was using wasn't food grade and I stopped because I didn't want it to get into my cat.

Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
07/17/2016
Patricia, have you tried salt for fleas? Sprinkle over carpet. Also we have flea bombs here. Not sure if you would have them there. You set them off in house and they fumigate while you out they work great.
Replied by Barbara
Aiken, South Carolina
07/18/2016
I am in a similar predicament as you. I have a multi cat household and for the first time in fifteen years my kitties and little house are infested. I have no carpets or rugs.

I am using cedar spray on floors and baseboards and organic apple cider vinegar/water spray on cats and white vinegar/water spray on stuffed furniture and floors and baseboards. I too have to get under furniture and in closets. The veterinarian said vacuuming is a major part. He sold me pyrithrine house spray, but after reading the label, there is no way I could use it safely.

Washing cats in pure soap liquid and organic apple cider vinegar. Spraying OACV/water in between.

Just set out one plate and light trap. I only see living fleas on cat bedding.

I have always been hesitant about spot on treatments and I use them, but they stopped working suddenly. Used now they do absolutely nothing.

Going to try the OACV in drinking water.

This is alarming.

How are you using baking soda? Do you use salt and borax in crevices?

Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
07/18/2016
20 years ago I had many cats who went in and out - and in the fall fleas jumped on my many cats and hitched a ride indoors to wait out the winter - not fun! And since my cats lived everywhere in the house, everywhere needed to be treated - this is what I did.

I used food grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE) - it is light and cheap and 10 pounds will last you decades. I started with my bed room - I stripped the bed, and dusted the room wearing a face mask. I worked - pounded - the DE into the crevices of the mattress, under the mattress, into the floor boards, against the wall where the wooden molding edges the floor - everywhere; the room was one billowing cloud of dust when I left and closed the door. I let it sit for 25 hours, and in the mean time I used another bedroom. Once I had established a 'ground zero' I stood the mattress up and gently beat off the excess DE and again the room was a dust bowl. I gave it a few hours and let the dust settle and then gently swept up the excess, leaving plenty behind in the cracks and crevices in both the mattress and the floor boards. The floor was still very dusty - you could feel it on your feet if you walked bear foot. I then laundered the bedding and dried it thoroughly and back on the bed; no cats were allowed to sleep on the bed during this process, as to avoid re-infesting the room. I then did the second room and created another 'ground zero' space. Into this now cleared room went freshly flea bathed cats with sanitized liter boxes and all fresh laundered kitty bedding. The cats were not allowed to leave this room until treatment was completed. Then room by room I did the same - I dusted the couch cushions and put them into large plastic bags, dust and all, and let them sit for 24-48 hours. I had to put a bag over the electronics to avoid getting DE dust in them as it is very hard on moving parts. I left the DE sit for 24-48 hours, and in the mean time washed every piece of bedding, every rug, anything the cats could encounter. I had carpeting in one room and I sprinkled the DE on and worked it deep into the carpet fibers with a broom. Again, wear a face mask as you will be working in a billowing cloud of dust that will irritate your sinuses and mucous membranes. After the wait time/working time was up I gently swept and brushed off the carpet, taking care to leave plenty behind deep in the carpet fibers and in all floor cracks and crevices; for under the couch I didn't even bother to vacuum, I just left it down - in fact anyplace that I could not see, or had to lift up furniture to get under, I just left the DE down. Doing all laundry at the same time is crucial, so I bagged up items until I could process them. A proper flea bath is crucial to the process as well. I used dish soap, starting with the cat in a dry bath tub [clip claws before you start] and started with soapy water and a wash cloth at the nose and worked from the nose outward; once I had the head and behind the ears saturated with the soapy water I then went on to the next cat. When all of the cats' heads were treated I filled the tub and did the bodies, again in the dish soapy water. I then drained the tub and used clear water with a cup of white vinegar to remove all traces of the dish soap and to balance the PH of the skin to avoid drying. You could see the fleas as black specks as the water drained. I followed up by blow drying the cats and flea coming. It was work, I was persistent, and the cats hated it, but I got them clean and clear and into the holding room they went while the rest of the house was treated. I want to say it took me 4 days to get the house treated and before I could release the cats. The basement and attic were not used by the cats so they were not treated. I did not have to treat the house again ever - and 10 years later I still found DE in the floor cracks. I made a point to stop letting the cats out in the late summer and fall until the first frost. I also dusted the cats with DE by putting them in a sack with DE - the head was out but it was snug at the neck so the cat was dusting ala 'shake-n-bake' style. By not letting them out during prime flea-hitch-a-ride-inside time, and by dusting the cats in the fall, plus the initial house debugging, I never had a problem again. I have since moved to a more rural location and have only 2 cats, and experienced fleas in my first year at the new house. I learned about the lamp flea traps and deployed 4-5 of them with great success: I firmly believe the lamp trap is easier to use, far less labor intensive, and just as effective as dosing the entire house in DE - or any other sprinkled substance. Now if I see my cat twitching the hair on her back as if she has the heebie jeebies, I dust the cat ala shake-n-bake style, and turn on the lamp traps.

Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
07/19/2016
Hey Barbara,

I have no experience with using baking soda, salt or borax in dry applications, so cannot comment there. I just wanted to agree with your vet - vacuuming daily is key to staying on top of an infestation, as well as daily washing of the bedding. Also, place those lamp traps in the heavy traffic areas and by the kitty beds. Please report back!

Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
07/19/2016
Barbara, when you vacuum, put a flea collar inside cleaner in dust compartment or sprinkle a little borax to kill fleas so they dont escape, because they can.
Replied by Patricia
Downsville, New York
07/22/2016
24 Posts
The borax didn't work because the flea trap has at least a dozen fleas each day.

She went under the deck today and came back with more fleas. I sprayed her with Cedarcide and combed her tonight and she looks like I might have gotten them.

Are there any bombs that won't leave a residue that my cat will lick off her feet?

Aren't flea bombs harmful to your health?

Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
07/23/2016
Patricia I suggested salt, when I was a kid my mother used this and it seemed to work and its cheap, now flea bombs if you dont make a habit of it works real good but you need to leave with your animals for a whole day, I have had cats in the past I have used it probably half a dozen times over the years no bad outcome, but don't forget fleas are not good for health either, I used a bomb when we had cockys in car and they never came back again
Replied by Julie
Ohio
07/29/2016
This is what I'm doing this weekend: bathe cats, scrub carpets with Apple Cider Vinegar rinse, let you know if it works.

Posted by Christina (Council Bluffs, Ia) on 07/06/2016
5 out of 5 stars

ACV works great for fleas. I tried apple cider vinegar on my 2 boxers and German Shepard and it works wonders. Plus I sprayed my furniture and all carpeted areas - super great!


Posted by Maryann (Ga) on 05/04/2016
5 out of 5 stars

For fleas, use apple cider vinegar internally and externally.

Put 1 drop. of apple cider vinegar a day in their food. After I did a drop in food 3 times a day for a week, it finally worked. It works on the outside once they get it on the inside.

Replied by Sandy
Russellville, Ky
06/05/2016
Does the ACV water mixture need to be refrigerated or can it be stored on the counter? I know the bottle of ACV says to refrigerate after opening but is it the same with a diluted form?
Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
06/05/2016
On the counter is fine.

Posted by Jamie (Hemet, Ca) on 11/01/2015

I started spraying apple vinegar on my white dog for about a week now and his fur is turning black, only on his neck though. Is that normal? Should I still be using it? I did ratio 50:50 apple vingear and water into. Spray bottle.

Replied by Suseeq
Sydney, Australia
04/09/2016
Yes it does 50/50 in spray bottle, don't get in eyes every day for a week then top up once or twice a week. I have been doing this for over ten years and I cant remember when I last saw a flea on my dogs.

Posted by Sarah (Philadelphia, Pa) on 10/31/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I used apple cider vinegar on my two adult cats, & it worked so well. The fleas died on contact, & some didn't but they slowly died after, I didn't think it would work, but it has. So I definitely recommend this to people. I just learnt about this 2 days ago, & I bought it at the grocery store. You can spray it on your cats or give them a bath in it. It doesn't hurt them so it's safe.


EC: Thank you, Sarah!

Just a reminder, since you didn't add this to your post, that Apple Cider Vinegar must be always be diluted with water (50/50) before you apply it to any pet.

Replied by Donna
Linden, Texas
03/31/2016
How long does it take for the fleas to die after spraying? I sprayed my dog with 50/50 apple cider vinegar and water. He went outside after he came back in he still has live fleas. I haven't seen any dead ones.
Replied by Suseeq
Sydney, Australia
04/01/2016
Donna spray every day until fleas are gone. Top up then when you see another flea.
Replied by Sara
Wichita Falls
05/09/2016
Donna, did you go to LMC in Jacksonville?

Posted by Carolyn (Rockford, Il) on 10/04/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I'm attempting to use ACV for my animals for fleas as the topical treatment did not work and with having a crawling baby I didn't want to use more. It seems to be working fine on my two dogs, but one has been itching so bad that he has a bald bleeding spot on his legs. I have avoided putting the treament on there for now for fear that it will burn and hurt the wound.

Is there any ideas on how I can help that heal quickly so I can apply treatment to that leg and ensure fleas do not return?

Replied by Om
Hope, Bc Canada
10/04/2015
Carolyn (Rockford Il.) for open wounds use turmeric powder. It is a natural antibiotic and you can google this, mentioning Ayurveda. I use it always.

When the wounds are healing, apply coconut oil. That's all that is needed.

Namaste Om

Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
10/09/2015
Hey Carolyn!

Please set out a few lamp traps to catch any fleas in your environment; this will keep the fleas off both furkids and skinkid.

If this were my dog I would take him to the vet to rule out a skin infection that might require antibiotics. If that is out of the question you might consider hitting the pet section at your local farm supply/Fleet Farm - you can find topical wound creams in the farm animal section as well as the pet section. I often find the same name antibiotics used for dogs in creams or salves for the larger animals and the larger animal products are often more cost effective.

One other thing to consider is alkalizing all of your pets drinking water with baking soda; this helps make them less appealing to the fleas and also has a calming effect on the skin.

Replied by Judy
Virginia
10/30/2015
You can give your dog 1 claritin for allergies and that will help the itching. My vet told me the other day and it is working. Good luck
Replied by Marilyn
West Monroe, La.
04/10/2016
For the raw place on the pets leg from itching and fleas, try baking soda on it. On humans it will even help erratically poison ivy and oak as well as red bugs (chiggers.) Baking soda is so versatile and helpful.
Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
04/11/2016
Marilyn, try yakult - a liquid probiotic - dab the sore spots with it doesn't matter if the dog licks because it wont hurt.
Replied by Marsha
Honolulu
05/05/2016
You should check with the vet on the amount of Claritin. My little dog who weighs 13 lbs. only needs 1/2 tablet every 24 hours. Check with your veterinarian.
Replied by Sylvia
Dumfries
07/02/2016
Please make sure the Yakult doesn't contain sweetener.
Replied by Patricia
Downsville, New York
07/22/2016
24 Posts
Theresa,

You may have hit on the reason why the Cedarcide seems to have worked this time. I cooked squash in baking soda water and mashed it and have been giving it to my cat for about three days. Also have been giving her ACV and honey.

It could be the baking soda, squash and ACV and honey not the Cedarcide working against the fleas.

I am going to give the borax treatment one more try.

Patricia


Posted by Angie (Upstateny) on 09/06/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I am so glad I found this site...I have tried a few of these suggestions as we have had a terrible infestation of fleas this summer. My poor fur babies I feel for them. I own 2 pomeranians and to watch them constantly scratch even after being sprayed and bathed and we treat the house and we have bought spray for the yard...but within a few days of peace, they are covered all over again and the cycle repeats and its costly. Not to mention I am the only one besides the dog that gets bit from the fleas and I react bad to the bites(allergic reaction type)....

Anyways, have tried the diluted ACV Spray and its working, we are starting to see them less and less as we just started. Also I have always mixed frozen peas in my dogs dry food so they get their roughage and it also keeps them from eating grass and helps in digestion. Well I soaked the frozen peas in ACV and mix it in there food now and they eat it just fine as well. If I try to put it in water they wont drink it. So Im crossing my fingers we will be totally flea free very soon..thank u so much for this site

Replied by Tasha
Lacassine, Louisiana
06/23/2016
My Chipin is 43 days pregnant. Can I use the ACV remedy on her and which version?
Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
06/24/2016
Yes, but be careful when puppies are born. White vinegar or any Apple Cider Vinegar will do.

Posted by Ernie (San Jose Ca) on 08/30/2015
5 out of 5 stars

Thanks Earth clinic and posts, this has helped my Boxer Rocky sleep last night! And wow! I checked him out this morning and no signs of fleas! I sprayed him with 25% ACV and 75% water in a spray bottle last night followed by a bath using dish soap. I did two soap washes to remove all fleas. There was tons! Anyway I then let him dry off a bit and resprayed him with ACV and off to bed we went. This morning I couldn't wait to see if this would work but even after letting him out in the backyard where all these bastard fleas are, NOTHING ON HIM! So I sprayed him again only because I know I didn't do 50/50. He is still scratching here and there but probably from scabs and irritated skin. So far so good! Hope this is my solution!

Replied by Pauline
Tas, Australia
05/14/2016
Hi .. what do you mean by 'soap washes' - literal soap or is it a soapy mixture made of particular ingredients?? Thanks.
Replied by Jessica Pressler
Buffalo
05/26/2016
Just using a little bit of DAWN soap is fine for your pets. Its safe to use and will kill any fleas on your pet.

Posted by Diane (Uk) on 08/19/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I have 3 cats, all had fleas. I bathed them in Apple cider vinegar and was not sure what the outcome would be.

The adult fleas died within 2 days and as the eggs hatched they died within the day. I also sprinkled salt on my carpets left for 24 hrs then hovered which also seems to work. I am so happy with the result I had to tell the world. I had previously spent a fortune on flea products. I will b sticking to the Apple cider vinegar in the future.

Replied by Oldilocks
Charlotte
10/22/2015
"... sprinkled salt on my carpets left for 24 hrs then hovered which also seems to work."

Please tell us (at least me) what "hovered" means. Thanks!

Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
10/23/2015
Not the OP, but 'hovered' = Hoover Vacuum - so the OP treated with the salt and let it work for 24 hours before vacuuming the salt and dead fleas out of the carpet.
Replied by Raychel
Ks
11/21/2015
I think they meant hoovered. Hoovered as in Hoover vacuum cleaners. English way of saying vacuumed.
Replied by Sl
Alabama
05/04/2016
What kind of salt, just table salt?
Replied by Candy
Toledo
06/16/2016
I have used an equal amount (cup for cup, not by pounds) of baking soda and salt on my floors for years, It worked great when I had dogs, cats and people in the house.
Replied by Patricia
Downsville, New York
07/22/2016
24 Posts
Theresa, You used salt in the carpet? How much? Can you explain the process please. Patricia
Replied by Theresa Donate

Mpls., Mn
07/23/2016
Hey Patricia,

I used Diatomaceous Earth/DE. I have not used salt or borax for fleas; I cannot imagine the amount of salt needed to dehydrate a flea, and the borax needs to be eaten to kill the flea -so not my first choice in eliminating fleas from the home. My first choice is the lamp flea trap. I posted this on another thread and reposted here about using DE:

20 years ago I had many cats who went in and out - and in the fall fleas jumped on my many cats and hitched a ride indoors to wait out the winter - not fun! And since my cats lived everywhere in the house, everywhere needed to be treated - this is what I did.

I used food grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE) - it is light and cheap and 10 pounds will last you decades. I started with my bed room - I stripped the bed, and dusted the room wearing a face mask. I worked the DE into the crevices of the mattress, under the mattress, into the floor boards, against the wall where the wooden molding edges the floor - everywhere; the room was one billowing cloud of dust when I left and closed the door. I let it sit for 24 hours, and in the mean time I used another bedroom to sleep in. Once I had established a 'ground zero' I stood the mattress up and gently beat off the excess DE and again the room was a dust bowl. I gave it a few hours and let the dust settle and then gently swept up the excess, leaving plenty behind in the cracks and crevices in both the mattress and the floor boards. The floor was still very dusty - you could feel it on your feet if you walked bear foot. I then laundered the bedding and dried it thoroughly and back on the bed; no cats were allowed to sleep on the bed during this process, as to avoid re-infesting the room. I then did the second room and created another 'ground zero' space. Into this now cleared room went freshly flea bathed cats with sanitized liter boxes and all fresh laundered kitty bedding. The cats were not allowed to leave this room until treatment was completed. Then room by room I did the same - I dusted the couch cushions and put them into large plastic bags, dust and all, and let them sit for 24-48 hours. I had to put a bag over the electronics with moving parts to avoid getting DE dust in them as it is very hard on moving parts - in fact I am sure sucking up all the excess DE shortened the life of my vacuum cleaner. I left the DE sit for 24-48 hours - this a time frame I thought was sufficient exposure to any fleas in the area, and in the mean time washed every piece of bedding, every rug, anything the cats could encounter. I had carpeting in one room and I sprinkled the DE on and worked it deep into the carpet fibers with a broom. Again, wear a face mask as you will be working in a billowing cloud of dust that will irritate your sinuses and mucous membranes. After the wait time/exposure time was up I gently swept and brushed off the carpet, taking care to leave plenty behind deep in the carpet fibers and in all floor cracks and crevices; for under the couch and under the couch cushions I didn't even bother to vacuum, I just left it down - in fact anyplace that I could not see, or had to lift up furniture to get under, I just left the DE down. Doing all laundry at the same time is crucial, so I bagged up items until I could process them. A proper flea bath is crucial to the process as well. I used dish soap, starting with the cat in a dry bath tub [clip claws before you start] and started with soapy water and a wash cloth at the nose and worked from the nose outward; once I had the head and behind the ears saturated with the soapy water I then went on to the next cat. When all of the cats' heads were treated I filled the tub and did the bodies, again in the dish soapy water. I then drained the tub and used clear water with a cup of white vinegar to remove all traces of the dish soap and to balance the PH of the skin to avoid drying. You could see the fleas as black specks as the water drained. I followed up by blow drying the cats and flea coming. It was work, I was persistent, and the cats hated it, but I got them clean and clear and into the holding room they went while the rest of the house was treated. I want to say it took me 4 days to get the house treated and before I could release the cats. The basement and attic were not used by the cats so they were not treated. I did not have to treat the house again ever - and 10 years later I still found DE in the floor cracks. I made a point to stop letting the cats out in the late summer and fall until the first frost. I also dusted the cats with DE by putting them in a sack with DE - the head was out but it was snug at the neck so the cat was dusting ala 'shake-n-bake' style. By not letting them out during prime flea-hitch-a-ride-inside time, and by dusting the cats in the fall, plus the initial house debugging, I never had a problem again. I have since moved to a more rural location and have only 2 cats, and experienced fleas in my first year at the new house. I learned about the lamp flea traps and deployed 4-5 of them with great success: I firmly believe the lamp trap is easier to use, far less labor intensive, and just as effective as dosing the entire house in DE - or any other sprinkled substance. I suppose if you used borax or salt, aside from needing enough to penetrate the carpet and fill in the cracks, the process would be the same as I describe above using the DE. Now if I see my cat twitching the hair on her back as if she has the heebie jeebies, I dust the cat ala shake-n-bake style, and turn on the lamp traps.

Replied by Suseeq
Sydney Australia
07/23/2016
Patricia, just an afterthought - after you have sprinkled salt over carpet, leave overnight. Keep animals out of area, vaccuum in morning and make sure you empty vaccuum straight away as salt has a little moisture in it. I think my mum swept it out if I remember rightly.
Replied by Patricia
Downsville, New York
07/24/2016
24 Posts
Theresa,

Wow! Thank you for that DE process. The downstairs of this house is one large open space except for the bathroom and a bedroom that is stuffed with boxes so I couldn't shut off a room at a time. I'd have to move out.

The flea trap I have been using is a hockey puck shaped light hanging down from its cord over a glass pan filled with Dawn dish soap. I try to remember to change the water every 24 hours.

I have read so many people talk about their success with organic ACV that I started treating my cat with it yesterday. I then sprayed the area around the flea trap (its a rug) with the raw ACV. I had been getting about a dozen fleas in the trap every 24 hours and I just checked the trap after the ACV spray and there are 0 fleas. I think that may mean that the fleas around the trap were killed by the ACV. Is that correct?

Does the light at the wall have to be bright or hot to draw the fleas?

I know this is probably a stupid question but do you have any idea how far from the light will the fleas travel? I mean will they travel from the center of the room to the light on the wall?

I didn't think that the trap would eventually get them all, but maybe with the help of the ACV, I am wrong in my belief. Do you continue the use of the traps after your whole house DE, borax or salt treatment?

Patricia


Posted by Kandace (Fillmore, California) on 07/23/2015
3 out of 5 stars

Better But With Side Effects
I started using ACV a week ago and so far I think it's working except for the side effect of loose stools. I have two Scotties. My Wheaton I used the last vial of Revolution and then used the ACV on my black Scottie.

My Wheaton also gets ear infections that are yeast origin. That is also working. What I don't know is how often do I treat the ear? After I clean the ear, he shakes his head for about a half an hour.

Replied by Jessie
Mi, Usa
07/24/2015
Dear Kandace,

For your dogs ears:

I would treat the ears once or twice a day for a week or ten days. Perhaps once a week for prevention after initial treatment.

Apple Cider Vinegar should be diluted to 50% or less to use in the ears. Full strength will burn and be uncomfortable.


Posted by W (Ohio) on 07/20/2015
5 out of 5 stars

For a flea problem, mix a spray bottle with 1/2 distilled water and 1/2 OACV (organic Apple Cider Vinegar). Spray it all over the dog (NOT in his eyes! ) getting him completely soaked. Let him air-dry. He'll smell like a salad for a few days, but it's a small price to pay to get rid of fleas!

Also make sure you've thoroughly cleaned all the dog's bedding, and you've vacuumed all over your home! You may also research here on this site how to use food-grade diatomaceous earth to get rid of fleas.


Posted by Betty (Waukegan, Il) on 07/12/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I have retired show dog shi tzus with very, very thick fur. I sprayed the table with insecticide before using the apple viniger, water and baking soda. The fleas died and my pup immediately got relief. Thank you, Thank you for this tip.

Replied by Patricia
Downsville, New York
07/22/2016
24 Posts
Betty,

You sprayed the table with insecticide? Isn't that poisonous stuff?

Also, what proportions did you use of baking soda, ACV and water.

Patricia


Posted by Oldwhatshisname (Usa) on 06/18/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I have 10 dogs and 4 cats and yes, I live on a farm. The outdoor dogs are infested with fleas and I have tried everything to get rid of the fleas but with so many animals I can't afford the popular vet prescription brands. I read about apple cider vinegar and tried it in a 50% dilution on one of the medium sized, short haired dogs. After about a minute, the fleas started moving to get away from where I applied the solution. I then wet her down all over and used a flea comb to get what I could see off her. So there's one down and nine dogs to go.

I will try adding ACV to their water bowls and see how that works.

Replied by Walle's Mom
Houston, Texas
07/10/20155 out of 5 stars
Thank y'all my WALLE just got BIG RELIEF n the fleas r gone. My poor baby is getting some rest.

Posted by Karen (Ecuador) on 04/21/2015
5 out of 5 stars

Hola. One of my cats had a bald spot on his throat. After some research I decided to use ACV, full strength directly on the spot several times a day. In less than a week I could see hair growing back in and the cat licking the spot proved that Apple Cider Vinegar did him no harm. I am a believer. In the move to Ecuador, I discovered that both cats are allergic to fleas here and developed scabs around their heads and bums. I gave each a bath then a rinse in Apple Cider Vinegar water -very traumatic for all us BTW ;) - dried them and then massaged their fur and skin with coconut oil. the scabs have begun to disappear on one cat but the other one just has so much trouble with skin problems I think it will be awhile. They both freak if I spray them, so once a week, more often with one cat, I apply a diluted mixture of Apple Cider Vinegar and water and rub in everywhere. I do spray all bedding and any other cloth material with the same mixture.

Fleas and ticks are a huge problem here. I just read elsewhere that adding brewer's yeast to their food everyday repels fleas so I will try that as well. Just no instruction on how much! Plus more frequent combing and brushing.


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