Essential Oils To Deter Fleas (and other pests) As the warmer weather creeps up, we dog lovers start to worry about those tough, relentless survivors called fleas. Have you ever wondered why some dogs and cats have severe flea problems, while others are hardly bothered by the little pests? Fleas being present on your pet can be an indicator of the animal’s general health. Parasites in general, and fleas in particular, are most attracted to the weak, unhealthy, or very young animal whose immune system is not functioning well. The best flea prevention is to reduce your pet’s susceptibility to fleas by improving his/her health. The biggest key to flea and tick prevention – and to your dog (or cat) having a strong immune system – is proper species appropriate nutrition. A healthy diet of fresh foods (NOT processed kibble or canned foods) will do wonders to keep pests away. The commonly used chemical based products used in over the counter and veterinary prescribed flea and tick collars or spray and even topical drops deterrents have been found to cause breathing problems, tremors, vomiting, skin irritations, permanent nerve damage and in some cases, even death. Some animals will experience hair loss and sores around the neck from flea collars or where the topical drops have been applied, plus the chemical fumes given off by these products can negatively affect you and your family as well. Did you know that your dog’s liver and kidneys are adversely affected by the use of commercial flea products such as frontline and advantage, chemical de-wormers and even heartworm drugs? The toxic chemicals in these products, often result in renal failure (kidney failure)and/or liver damage to the point of the liver no longer being able to filter the blood and then, complete liver failure. Contaminated blood circulating throughout the body day after day will most definitely contribute to other more complicated health issues, such as diabetes and arthritis to name two of the most common long term side effects of using these toxic chemicals. These toxic drugs can also cause severe skin rashes, loss of hair, epileptic seizures, brain damage. The list of adverse side effects amazingly goes on and on. Still people continue to use these drugs because they don’t know there is a better, simpler, less expensive, safer way. There is a safe effective alternative for your dog! You can do it without chemicals! ESSENTIAL OILS Plants produce essential oils as their own survival technique to repel bugs This makes essential oils great insect repellents for animals (and humans, too). Essential oils are all natural, mild and will leave your dog’s coat healthy and vibrant while working at a cellular level to boost the immune system. For centuries, they have been used in a variety of ways to repel fleas, ticks and other biting insects. Essential oils are nature’s own God given repellents. They ward off unwanted hitchhikers. Some of the more common oils that act as flea and insect repellents are: lavender, citronella, cedar ,peppermint, eucalyptus and lemongrass. Lavender A sweet-smelling, all-purpose insect repellent, lavender essential oil performed well in recent studies as both a tick deterrent and a method of preventing tick eggs from hatching. Additionally, Ohio State University recommends it for controlling fleas. A 2007 South African study found that formulas containing diluted lavender at rates of 10 to 20 percent lavender performed well as tick repellents when compared artificial DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) sprays. Citronella Oil of citronella naturally repels insects such as mosquitoes, black flies, fleas and ticks, therefore, preventing bites. Citronella oil is a natural, non-toxic alternative to chemical insect repellents such as DEET , therefore, is usually the preferred choice. A combination of the citronella oil and cedarwood oil also helps to repel mosquitoes. Cedar A wonderfully fragrant oil that provides a pheromone interruption agent that impairs the insects mental capacity and repels them. Peppermint An oil high in menthol – it repels fleas, spiders and even mice. Eucalyptus While better known for its anti bacterial properties it is a great natural pest deterrent as well. Lemongrass Deters fleas and especially tick. According to Ohio State University. Lemongrass oil contains a pleasing citrus scent that is useful in controlling oily scalps and skin conditions, making it suitable for use on dogs with skin conditions in lotion, spray, soap and shampoo formulas.
Please use ONLY therapeutic grade essential oils . I only recommend and personally use Young Living Essential oils and products as the are pure and safe enough to be taken internally – I don’t know of any other essential oils that are as pure.
Essential oil formulations will need to be applied more frequently than synthetic pesticides, but the benefits far outweigh the exposure to harsh chemical smells and toxic side effects. They are great for misting your dog’s legs (and your own) any time that you go out where fleas would be likely to be found.
Horses and flies I often am asked which essential oils repel flies for horses or around barns. Here is list of the oils that work specifically for detering flies:
â€¢ Idaho Tansy Essential Oil â€¢ Geranium Essential Oil â€¢ Sandalwood Essential Oil â€¢ Lavender Essential Oil â€¢ Rosemary Essential Oil â€¢ Lemon Essential Oil
To make a safe, non-toxic fly spray for your horses (or dogs), I use a 32 oz spray bottle and put about 5 to 10 drops of the above oils to spring water or distilled water. Be sure to shake well before applying as water and oil separate very quickly.
Basic instructions for a flea, tick or mosquito spray for dogs:
Up to 10 drops or so of any of the insect repelling oils or combination of the same in a 32 oz spray bottle. Shake well and mist your dog daily. This may also be sprayed on bedding or around doorways and baseboards in your home to keep insects out.
* Mist the dog before going to training class and upon returning as well. You won’t pick up fleas from other members of the training class. * Spray the area where you set up your exercise pens and crates at the dog shows. Fleas will choose to go to the neighbors instead. The dogs themselves can be misted when you leave home and again before returning from the show. * Set the squirt bottle near the door, so that you can mist the dog (and your own pants legs) when you take the dog for a walk. No hitchhikers will come home with your or your pet from public places. * If you have a dog with flea allergies, it can get instant relief while you are ridding the environment of fleas. *For dogs that are bothered by flies biting their ears, cover the eyes with your hand and mist the ear area. Flies will stay away and the ears can heal. * Mist your own hair and clothing when outside during mosquito season. The oils set up a very pleasant smelling barrier, so that you (and your party) won’t be bothered by these pesky insects. For longer term control, a few drops may be placed on a cotton flea collar and put around the dog’s neck. Renew the oil whenever the aroma starts to fade. You can also put a few drops of one or more of the oils into the palms of your hands, rub your palms together and apply to the dog?s coat and skin starting at the neck and down the front legs, then down the back to the base of the tail and down the back legs.
Caution: The ONLY essential oils I recommend are Young Living Essential Oils due to their high quality, purity and medicinal/therapeutic value!
To order Young Living Essential Oils, call 800-371-2928 and use the referral and Sponsor number 719671. ******************************************
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