How to Give a Dog an Apple Cider Vinegar Bath

| Modified on Jan 05, 2024
ACV Baths for Pets: Enhance Dog & Cat Health Naturally

Most dog owners are familiar with bathing their furry friends, especially during allergy seasons when baths become almost a necessity. However, an apple cider vinegar bath is a surprising yet highly effective solution for many canine health issues. This natural remedy is not just limited to dogs; it can also be beneficial for cats, addressing problems like fleas, yeast infections, hot spots, and itchy skin.

Apple Cider Vinegar Bath Benefits to Dogs and Cats

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is known for its myriad of health benefits. When it comes to pets, it can be particularly effective in tackling issues such as:

  • Flea Removal and Prevention: ACV acts as a natural flea repellent.
  • Hot Spots and Mange: Helps in soothing and healing skin irritations.
  • Itchy Skin and Yeast Infections: ACV's anti-inflammatory properties reduce itchiness.
  • Dermatitis and Allergic Reactions: Restores the skin's natural pH balance, alleviating symptoms.

Despite its acidic nature, ACV is soothing for the skin, helping to restore its natural acidic balance. When a dog's or cat's skin is affected by bites, inflammation, or welts, ACV can provide much-needed relief.

How to Give Your Dog a Bath in Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Preparation: Choose a warm, draft-free area and have clean towels at hand. Depending on your pet's size, use a sink, bathtub, or a child’s swimming pool.
  • Bathing: If your dog is particularly dirty, start with a regular dog shampoo. Rinse thoroughly before adding 4 inches of warm water mixed with ACV (½ cup for a sink, 2 cups for a bathtub, and 4 cups for a child’s pool).
  • Application: Saturate your dog's fur and skin with the ACV solution, paying special attention to areas like the ears and tail. Continue for at least 15 minutes.
  • Drying: Do not rinse off the ACV. Dry your dog thoroughly and let them air dry in a warm place.

A diluted ACV spray (half ACV, half water) can be used for ongoing treatment. Be cautious around the eyes, especially when applying near the head.

Can I Give My Cat An Apple Cider Vinegar Bath?

Cats, too, can benefit from ACV baths. However, since baths can be stressful for cats, it's important to be gentle and calm during the process. Use a kitchen sink with a few inches of warm water and ½ cup of ACV. Ensure you saturate the cat's skin with the solution, towel dry, and avoid rinsing it off.


Apple cider vinegar baths offer a natural, chemical-free way to address common pet health issues. Whether for dogs or cats, this method provides a holistic approach to pet care, enhancing their well-being with every bath.

Have you tried an ACV bath for your pet? Please share your experiences and feedback with us or continue reading below to learn how Earth Clinic readers used ACV baths to treat various ailments in their pets.

Related Links:

Apple Cider Vinegar Flea Treatment for Dogs
Apple Cider Vinegar for Cats
Apple Cider Vinegar for Dogs

ACV for Dogs

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Vanessa (South Africa) on 03/23/2018

Do we not use any kind of shampoo when the dog is dirty?

EC: Yes, bath the dog first with a good dog shampoo. Rinse well. Fill up tub with more warm water and add 2 cups of apple cider vinegar and pour over dog slowly and thoroughly.

ACV for Dogs
Posted by Joanne E. (Marietta) on 03/17/2018

My german shepherd has a terrible time with environmental allergies and chews herself raw starting in the spring through til the end of summer. I bathe her at least once a week with hot spot shampoo but find giving her an apple cider vinegar in between is very helpful. I add 2 cups to apple cider vinegar to my bathtub filled with about 4 inches of warm water. Her coat looks amazing after the bath. Smell gone after she dries off completely. Hope this helps.