Friends, I don't know why but the wet application of DE failed to help my 6 cats, even as much as the dry DE application. I am back to applying the DE, dry, on a cotton ball to ears - pressing a good amount into the ear, paws, tails' tips and privates, and anywhere else they are scratching. At least they have immediate relief, and it surely minimizes the mite excrement and ear wax that is in the ear. I will research getting the Milbemite from my vet. I will keep this DE up until I can arrange for the vet treatment, hopefully it will start to end this as it has been going on so long (3 months). I will let you know. Many thanks for all the sharing.
Hi! Checking back in, after a few more weeks of trying remedies!
As of when I wrote last, I tried Diatomaceous Earth (DE) with pyretherins (chrysanthemum extract). I used it dry, applying with a cotton ball, like I had the plain DE. The plain DE worked nicely to provide the cats immediate relief from the mites sensations. But it needed re-application daily or so.
Trying the DE + pyretherins, the result stirred up sensation and symptoms at first for a couple hours, but then seemed to last longer - I was able to go up to 3-4 days without the cats scratching, shaking heads and so on. But over a couple weeks, the relief lasted shorter and shorter for the cats.
All this, plus I have still been using the vet's Revolution for them, now about every two weeks (which I read online somewhere). I think it helped, as one cat with very long hair apparently hadn't really been getting the Revolution on her skin and she had the worst case. Finally I realized this and was very careful to apply it to her skin, and immediately her condition came "up" to the level that the other 5 cats were at. So, all 6 have very little "coffee grounds" stuff and wax in their ears, yet displayed itching and head-shaking after some time with the topically applied products used, as said above.
I was discouraged and alarmed after 3 months of this - trying something which seems to give relief, then finding the relief waning in effectiveness. I had this "waning" result with alkaline mineralized water, and with the DE with pyretherins. This was while using Revolution at 4-week intervals, then at 2-week intervals. The mineral oil didn't work for us at all. The plain DE didn't have a "waning" effect but it just never got the job all done. I came back to this site and somehow read what I missed before - about Ted's Borax, vinegar, hydrogen peroxide formula. I almost went out at midnight to get the stuff but decided to wait till the next day.
The next evening after work, I was too tired to . (as I understood the procedure) clean the house with a borax/ water solution and leave it on the floors, etc.; do laundry with borax of all 6 cats' beddings; and give a Ted's borax solution bath to each of the 6 cats. (His stories and the testimonials talked about dogs and baths; I didn't find any about cats but I was prepared to bathe the cats, though I haven't ever before bathed all the cats at once.) So, tired, instead, I made up a small glass bottle of Ted's borax solution to apply to ears, paws, privates and tail's ends, just to see if I could see the effect for the cats.
Reading Ted's approach, I had begun to understand the importance of getting the biologically active material into a solution that penetrates skin somewhat. Another person had talked to me also about putting the DE into solution; when I had tried that person's suggestion which had not been tried on a pet's body but only in the garden, it clearly made their situation worse over a couple of hours, and I reversed tacts. Using Ted's formula the night before last and yesterday, I also found that it didn't do the job. Here in the Arizona desert, we may have some truly genetically deviant mites, very hardy.
However, this morning, before I could do all the cleaning steps that Ted's approach asks (not that my house wouldn't benefit from that, anyway!), I thought about what had worked the best. The best remedy was the plain DE - available at HomeDepot here, or where swimming pool supplies are sold, for use in pool filters. But DE didn't last, didn't quite get the job done. DE is known to be an effective natural pesticide, as it is fossilized, ground seashells, inert calcium carbonate, etc., and its pieces are very sharp microscopically, so it cuts the micro-bugs; it is also very drying, so it lethally dehydrates the micro-critters too. It is used here by savvy natural gardeners to get rid of garden pests. As I wrote earlier, if you use it, you'll find it is very drying to your hands and nails, so wash your hands well after touching it. (And, again, avoid the expensive brand that states it is "Flour Grade," as I found that it gets into the air and is breathed - very damaging if anyone has respiratory conditions - and is quite difficult to clean up as it only floats in air and doesn't stay on surfaces to get wiped up easily. I had to clean and clean again. One of the most challenging and dangerous experiences in this whole tough time, as one here has a respiratory problem.)
So, this morning, I added DE to my bottle of Ted's formula and again drenched my 6 cats' ears, paws, privates and tails' ends. This provides an active solution and a hopefully effective biologically active agent - DE. And the Borax is there too. I am currently delighted that I have seen no more head shaking, itching, etc., for hours. I will report in a couple days if the effect continues, and I will take steps to apply it very thoroughly to all the cats and the environment too.
Thank you for this site. It has helped me and my beloved felines. Hopefully some of this experience will help others.
Re: my earlier submission. I have found it to be vitally important that I use only regular grade DE, i.e., NOT a certain brand and kind that calls itself "flour grade" - very fine. The "very fine" was so fine that it got in the air, and I had to wash everything that I possibly could, linens, floors, tabletops, etc., over & over, because we were breathing it, and it wouldn't stay DOWN on surfaces. It was much more expensive than regular grade (about $20, 1 lb.)
I have used DE for years and never had that problem until I used this certain "flour grade" type. So, please do use DE, but please get a regular type such as at HomeDepot for swimming pools - about $15 for 25 lbs.(life time supply for our urpose here - Also can use along edge of garden to eliminate pests, etc.)
Today searching for that product that I mentioned but couldn't get a hold of, I found online that pyrethrins (from chrysanthemum flowers thus natural) can be used like I've been using DE. Local to Arizona, I found a place that sells DE with pyrethrins (about $20, 1 lb. bag). I got some and have been applying to the cats now with the cotton ball to ears, neck, paws, tail tip and privates. So far, I can see that they are scratching less. Hopefully, this will help them. The pyrethrins may actually kill all stages of the mites, and so I may have reached the end of this tough challenge. I will let you know.
Please, never use swimming pool grade Diatomaceous Earth in the house, only foodgrade DE. From the gardenstore or feed store. NOT the swimming pool store. Swimming pool grade can give you lung disease.
After trying Revolution monthly, I am now trying it twice monthly as I read online somewhere. Still, with various cleaners from the vet and from online, my beloved cats are still shaking their heads and scratching.I have also been using DE powder whenever they display these symptoms. I grab a cotton ball and dip it in the DE powder and press it firmly into each ear, also to their paws front and back - just dust the top of the paw, to the tip of their tails - as the paws and tail tip contact the ears, and their private parts - just dust there with the DE-coated cotton ball. Plus any place else that they are scratching. These are places where the parasites, eggs and such may be, so the DE will just stop them from developing. DE microscopically is very sharp shards as well as very dehydrating, so it wipes out all kinds of parasites and pests, in the garden too, etc. However, I am tired of them having more problems with this coming up still day after day. I am glad that the DE gives them immediate relief. I will continue for a month, as one writer suggests here, though I may have already done that. DE is very drying, so wash your hands thoroughly as it will dry your nails; also floors, etc. Still I would do anything to have their suffering end. I will try Milbo-Mite, as the oil didn't work for me & wasn't manageable - oil everywhere! Thank you!
Hi. I read your posts and wanted to warn you and others to not ever use swimming pool grade DE for pets or people, especially if they can lick it and ingest it. I've heard of this killing some people's cats! (It has very toxic chemicals ). I appreciate your warning about the extra fine flour grade getting into the air and harming the lungs. I've read that one person's cat died from inhaling it. I see that you care and love your furry babies an awful lot, and it's refreshing to see someone trying so hard to make them comfortable. I hope you've found a remedy that at least works for a while. One trick to help keeps mites to a minimum on pet bedding, is to enclose cat beds in a zippered pillowcase, or two. That way you can easily just wash the pillowcases and changed them out fast without doing a ton of laundry (or put a folded up blanket or quilt inside the pillowcases). You can even use a big role of clear scotch tape to take the mites off and also some mineral oil to see if there are any on there with a magnifying glass. I hate ear mites!! Best of luck!
Lanissa -- I always had lots of cats and deals with ear mites. You did the right thing but long term untreated, ear mites can cause bleeding.
With my cats I use neem oil after cleaning the outer ear. Then repeat every three days or so. Because neem oil interrupts the productive cycle of these mites, there is noticeable improvement. I keep checking though. Kittens need the neem oil diluted with another oil because of their delicate skins. Coconut oil is also good for sensitive ears with a touch of turmeric powder if bleeding. Turmeric stops bleeding internally and externally.
For the bleeding I use turmeric powder in small amounts as it also is a natural antibiotic. For fluid in the ear I use turmeric powder and alum in 1 - 20 ratio to dry out the ear, later following up with coconut oil. This will prevent inflammation and provide cooling for red hot ears. Hope this helps.
Neem oil (and most all natural oils) is toxic to cats - they do not have the liver enzyme or metabolic enzymes as we do. As well cats have systems like camels - so any dry food harms them greatly (they derived from the desert and their intestines are designed to draw water out of the food to store it. (very simply put).
I once did research on what is in many common pet foods and it will make you well disgusted... even rubber hardeners and other nasty garbage. I use Wysong products (great and low temperature as high temperature destroys enzymes and other nutritional qualities). I add this to a raw diet along with certain home grown herbs and plants chopped and slightly wilted (warm water poured over the food) I add natural sea Vegetables as well (make sure a dog or cat search on any plants that are toxic to them. Or other products).
A great book is "The Natural Remedy Book for Dogs and Cats by Diane Stein and one can search for such other great books. I have had mine for decades and resort to it frequently. Dr. Mercola (Human MD) has great books and products for cats (dogs).
My background was in research (legal and medical) and many other areas. I went holistic as a young child after reading my mothers medical books - although her Merck manual from 1953 is full of natural remedies that work. Rx for people and pet's took over.
For ear mites try neem oil. The mites disappear within days of treatment. Neem oil disrupts the breeding cycle therefore no need to go on for a full month. Except now and then use it to prevent new infections.
No need to warm the semi solid oil as the body warmth does it and also it is easier to pack the oil into the orifice. For kittens the neem oil has to be mixed with coconut oil as their skin is too delicate for neem on its own. On EC was another post on this, confirming my own observation on the shorter duration of mite treatment.
NEEM OIL is a rapid cure for ear mite infections. I used it with my cockapoo and it worked in a couple of days where three weeks of using other treatments failed (olive oil, mineral oil, olive oil with garlic, water/vinegar ALL FAILED). The effectiveness of Neem Oil was impressive and I recommend it highly.
Start by warming the Neem Oil by sitting the closed bottle in a bowl of hot water for about 10 minutes. This is important because Neem Oil becomes viscous or solid when cold and you must warm it up so that it flows easily into the ear.
Then, using a dropper, fill the ear canal with pure Neem Oil, then massage the ear canal for about a minute, then wipe off the excess with a cotton ball. Do this once a day at bedtime for a few days so the dog sleeps with the oil in its ear. Neem Oil seems to be absorbed into the tissues so do not use it for more than a few days.
(Hope, Bc, Canada)
thank you, thank you. Of all the remedies listed, neem oil will not poison or kill a cat. A few years ago the gov't here issued a warning about Borax. It is not as harmless as thought of generally. Most vets' medicines are prohibitively expensive, harmful or outright poisons. If health is a business, let the buyer beware. However, I would see a vet just to determine if the cat has also an ear infection. Antibiotics have long term damaging effect on the body and some cats do not recover well at all. Warm the neem oil and clean the outside daily, applying every three days for a month. I have many rescue cats and some dogs, believe me, simple, harmless natural remedies are , in the end best and not draining on limited resources plus no pain and stress on the animal. Thanks again. Om
I have tried a solution recommended to me a year ago for killing ear mites. It is a combination of Borax Powder, 70% Alcohol and drops of Gentian Violet (purple dye with antifungal properties). Initially this treatment worked but it can be very messy! You have to worry about the purple dye getting on fabric, cabinets and furniture as they shake their heads out. I would warm it up and use a stopper syringe to apply a few drops in each ear. I have been treating them since mid-December with a break of one or two days then the mites have returned with a vengeance.
I am trying the mineral oil treatment now which the cats tolerate far better. I first clean their ears with witch hazel to get all the debris out. I have 12 cats and this is becoming a daunting task as a few of them are half feral and don't take kindly to being held. I have only been using the mineral oil treatment for the second day now. I read a post that said someone combined mineral and olive oil... I wondered if they applied them simultaneously or if they mixed the two together?? Also to those who have been using Neem Oil, this sounds like it may be more effective than Mineral Oil whereby it sounds like it actually KILLS the mites opposed to slowing them down. Where can one pick up NEEM OIL... health food store I am guessing. Thanks for all the blogs as it does help when people have tested and tried effective methods. Also the person who said they applied both mineral and olive oil I think she applied olive oil at night also? Please clarify if you can, thanks!
Olive Oil and Peppermint Oil
Holistic Ear Mite Remedies:
I adopted two kittens in November and both were infested with fleas and ear mites. They were babies, only four weeks old, but the mother stopped producing milk, and the woman who owned the pregnant cat said she'd had enough of the constant bottle feeding.
My key goals became to rid them of the fleas and mites, but the vet I have told me to avoid any medications at their young age, especially since one of them was the runt of the litter and barely weighed 14 ounces. The other was one pound.
Anyway, he suggested I mix 1/4 cup of olive oil with 10 drops of peppermint oil and then store it in a bottle. Every day, I'd put three or four drops of this oil mixture into their ears and then massage it in. I'd follow this with a bath in warm water with baby shampoo to kill off as many fleas as possible. Then I'd use blunt-tipped tweezers to pick off fleas that climbed to the head. Wrap them in a blanket and dry them off some. Then I'd use a flea comb to remove any other fleas that escaped. I was told that by bathing them right after the oil treatment, any mites that escaped the ear were washed away by the shampoo.
After two weeks, I took them back to the vet and heard the words I was waiting for--both kittens were completely flea and ear mite free. They are eight months old and never had fleas or ear mites again. So obviously the olive oil and peppermint oil mix did the trick. Now I have my two boys who weigh 11 and 13 pounds (the runt is 13) and as I've been told they are obviously part Maine Coon, the vet's told me to expect them to be huge. Given the size of their paws, I'd already expected that!
there is a mycoplasma going around that allows these mite to live on people and animals the remedie is because the mycoplasma feeds from frontal lobe and ammonia and some acids symptoms can be mites, aligator legs, pink spots, weight gain, fatigue, lesions, insomnia, malnutrition, depression, swollen glands, headaches, walking nemonia, nervous condition etc. The cure is a slice of onion on forhead for several weeks changing onion only when it is dryed up and not plyable hold it there with sweatband put napkin over it to avoid ridicule, if that the problem you will feel it working after as little as a week for comfort de earth in between legs. the mites go when this mycoplasma dies cure. same for pets. you may need buy dog hat for them to keep it on.
Olive Oil, Garlic Oil
i have used both VCO and olive oil and garlic oil (from capsules - the smelly kind not the deodorized). i have pet rats and sometimes they will get ear mites. at first i tried putting VCO in their ears for several days and then also rubbing it all over their fur til it reaches their skin. while this seemed to work you have to do it again in a few days to make sure you get the new ones that hatch. i have also used olive oil for this and what i think worked the fastest was squeezing a garlic capsule in either VCO or EVOO and using the garlic flavored oil on their ears and around their ears. just don't get the garlic oil in their eyes! you must re-apply in 3 days and then in 3 more days to be sure. good luck!
Olive Oil, Garlic Oil
the VERY best thing i have found for ear mites in cats, rats, etc. is olive oil mixed with garlic oil. usually i just rub the olive/garlic mixture on their ears and then do it again a few days later.
i've also had pretty much the same results with just olive or coconut oil by itself if you are afraid to use garlic. i personally don't believe garlic is poisonous to cats but some people do. also, i had rats that had ear mites and rubbed VCO all over them ears and everywhere and did it again a few days later (it doesn't hurt them to lick it off) and the mites were gone.
(San Jose, Ca, Usa)
WARNING!!!!!! You should never use garlic oil or any kind of product containing garlic on your cat. Garlic is toxic to cats!!!!!! Many other types of oils can be used! Please use an acceptable substitute like olive oil, vegetable oil or almond oil.
(Manchester, Nh, Usa)
Garlic is NOT toxic to cats! In fact, I fed it to my cat in every meal for 15 years and he never had any fleas, ticks or infections. I used about a tablespoon of crushed garlic. He lived a long and happy life. Don't spread misinformation please.
I too have given my cats Garlic for many, many years, for fleas... Not sure where your info came from but, it is NOT toxic 2 cats!
Garlic is at the top of the list of well-known toxins for cats. It can cause severe life-threatening anemia (Heinz body anemia). Some cats seem to do okay with very small doses, but many have died from regular use of garlic in their diets.
(Adelaide, South Australia)
Yes! Garlic oil for dog earache.
How to make:
How to Make and Use Garlic Oil for Ear Infections https://www.doctorshealthpress.com/general-health-articles/garlic-oil-for-ear-infections/
Also, Gentian Violet diluted down to 0.5% with water works excellent for fungal infections in the ears for both human and animals. By I think it may be banned in Australia…. But double check me on that.
Diet plays a significant role in dog ear troubles. My dogs had itchy and inflamed ears, especially in the summer, until I put them on a freeze-dried raw food diet. Issues went away within a week. But they still needed a good ear flush from time to time. I used Epiotic advanced cleaner for that with very good results.
Olive Oil, Vitamin E and Yellow Dock
I first rid a cat of ear mites using a mixture of olive oil and vitamin e back in 2004, following the advice in the book natural remedies for cats. Yesterday I noticed my cat had signs of mites. I cleaned the ear of debris and massaged in olive oil. Today I bought vitamin e and the yellow dock and gave him a dose of olive oil and then the yellow dock (9 drops in 1 TBS of water). We'll see if this works, but I bet it will. I treated the nonaffected ear yesterday, but not today. My cat is a little wary of me messing with his ears, so I'm focusing my efforts on his bad ear at this point!
I have been using the natural olive oil and vitamin E treatment for my cats ear mites as suggested in several articles online. My question is, does the vitamine E oil damage my cat if ingested. He shakes it out and then it ends up all over his fur. I know it is not good for humans to take vitamin E pills if it is not needed because it builds up in the system. Thanks in advance for any answers!
Hi, I have a holland lop with ear mites and i have been trying so many things. They work for a little while only. I would like to try the yellow dock root extract since I have heard about this from a few people here and elsehere. I went to my homeopath to get some and he asked me what strength cause apparently there are different ones. Can someone please tell me the strength they are using, Thank you
Pine Tar Soap
pine tar soap also works very well on mites as well as fleas. lather it up very well and let it sit a few minutes. it will be necessary to do it a few days later. i would use this in addition to VCO or garlic oil.
Pure Aloe Vera Gel
Years ago, my Grandmother spent a majority of her summer, running her dog to the Vet's because of ear mites. Then she decided to take the pet to another Vet. who was a Man who believed in "old time" remedies. His advice to her for the ear mites was pure aloa vera gel. Just break off a small end of one of the stems and using a Q-tip, swab the ear and within a few days, the mites were gone and most importantly, the Aloa is very gentle on the pet not to mention it cures without harmful chemicals.
I remember finding kittens as a young person, new in a first apartment with a friend, we found these two kittens and took them in, they had ear mites, and we used alcohol drops in the ears, rubbed them and cleaned them out with q-tips, carefully and as the kittens shook their heads we kept cleaning and adding more after it dried. we only had to do this the one time. it went on over three hours though. a long time in a bathroom. the kittens were also bathed with dish soap. now I am hearing Olive Oil, lets be frank it has been a few years since we did this. now I have two new kittens and so far i can see the mite dirt but they do not scratch the ears or shake their heads and such to demonstrate they have them. I am going to give them both, olive oil and rubbing alcohol tx just to make sure.
(Chicago, Illinois, Usa)
I think many of the suggestions on this thread are very helpful. As with the Tea Tree Oil, Borax needs to be used with caution! Especially as cats groom themselves so there's a high likelihood that they will ingest the stuff. Borax is even considered to be toxic by the EPA when ingested. Obviously diluted amounts are less toxic, but since dialysis is the only method for rescuing a cat that has too much exposure to Borax, I would highly recommend a lot of thought before resorting to Borax. The vaseline and vegetable oil are meant to smother the mites.
Hi, Alcohol works but use wet on Qtip or damp on cotton ball and has to be done very carefully without filling ear because it can go into the eyes or nose of your pet through ear canals. Alcohol in eye or nose is painful and burns. It hurts to breath alcohol. Try saline solution or salty like the ocean if you mix yourself with a little baking soda but again don't fill ear with solution. Apply with Qtip And dry with Qtip and tissue to get rid of moisture. To prevent ear aches from the moisture.
My 10 year old half boxer, half jack russel recently started having these "spells." This is the order and characteristics of each one.
3. Mild head jerking
After each one of these 30-minute events, she would go the kitchen and clean out any left over dog or cat food. Then she would appear fine. Vet visits showed she was in good health...with her thyroid a bit low. We tried prozac, thinking it might be anxiety attacks, with no relief so we weaned her off. We started her on thyroid meds and her general overall well being improved, but the attacks came regularly throughout the day. I gave her 12.5 benedryl and it helped...but it kept her sleepy, and she was getting weaker. I was at my wits end!!! It looked like I was going to have to put my sweet Tuffie down. I noted one day, she was occasionally shaking her head...not often, but I did notice it. It occurred to me she could have ear mites.
I treated her for ear mites and she literally stopped the attacks overnight! Am I crazy? Have you all heard of such a thing?
What you describe sounds *exactly* like seizures. It is possible there are mites as well, but some seizures show up as head shaking.
Is there a reason your vet has not prescribed seizure meds? I understand that some folks would like to avoid any kind of drug, but you do have a senior with creeping up on high miles; a seizure medication from the vet may quite improve his quality of life.
As you saw, after a seizure your dog is very hungry; some sugar will help after a seizure - either sugar water, honey water, corn syrup or vanilla ice cream in a pinch.
In my limited experience, seizures that crop up in an older animal tend to just get worse. If this were my dog I would see the vet and discuss medications - and take a look/see for ear mites. I would also look at the environment to check for contaminants, and avoid feeding any food that contains rosemary, along with any type of food dye, or grains.
If seeing the vet is out of the question at this time and you find 'coffee grounds' in your dog's ears, then check out EC's remedies for ear mites: