If you prefer to use a more natural flea control, without the use of chemicals, why not try these home remedies for fleas? They use all natural ingredients that won't harm your pets, but will kill those pesky parasites!
"I'm reluctant to use toxins on my dog just to get rid of his fleas, is there an alternative safer, more natural flea control I could use?"
I've heard that question asked many times, so I thought I'd answer it here.
I appreciate that many owners may be concerned by wording on commercial flea treatment packaging, such as "Keep out of reach of children", "Avoid contact with eyes or skin" - it's no wonder owners turn to more natural flea remedies as a safer option.
And the good news is that it is possible to free your Cocker Spaniel and your home of dog fleas, without the use of toxins.
There are many natural flea control remedies that can be easily put together using simple ingredients from your kitchen cupboards; ingredients that won't harm your pet but will kill those pesky fleas!
Here are the top natural flea controls...
Citrus oils are often used as a natural remedy for controlling, repelling and killing fleas.
The oils are best diluted with water which can then be poured over your dog in the bath or used in a clean spray bottle to dampen his coat.
Make sure you get behind his ears and the top of his head (a hot spot for fleas), but place your hands over his eyes so that you don't spray any of the mixture into them as it may sting.
The base of your Cocker's tail and under his 'armpits' are also places where fleas like to take up residence so make sure you give those areas a good drenching.
The citrus oil will need to be diluted with water before being sprayed onto your dog's coat. (Keep an eye on your pet's skin as some dogs may be irritated by the oils if they're too concentrated). Re-apply every four days or so.
It's much safer spraying natural lemon juice
onto your dog's coat than it is to spray him with chemicals and having to do it around twice a week is a small price to pay for the benefit, don't you think?
If you like the sound of using a spray made from grapefruits, oranges, lemons and limes as a natural flea control, here's how to make it.
Simply cut an orange, lemon or lime (or a selection) into slices or quarters (it doesn't matter which) and place in a bowl. If you score the skins before cutting them you'll release more of their oils, and then squeeze to release the juice.
Pour boiling water over the fruit and leave
overnight.The next day you can strain the pulp and use the lemon liquid in a clean spray bottle or sponge directly onto your dog's coat.
Bubbles and suds are another natural flea control for dogs; they're a great way of getting rid of adult fleas because they literally drown in the suds!
Using your favorite dog shampoo (baby shampoo works fine too) get a good lather going and wash your dog; make sure you create lots of bubbles!
When he's clean, rinse him thoroughly (twice is always a good bet, and then once again to make really sure there's no more suds left in his coat).
Once his coat is squeaky clean and well-rinsed it's time to dry him off.
If you want to double on effectiveness, you can spray his coat with the cirtrus spray above.
It's said that cider vinegar is good for controlling fleas because it makes the dog's blood unpalatable for the fleas.
You can either add one teaspoon to your dog's fresh drinking water each day or you can use it as a spray; simply add a tablespoon to a small water spray and use on your dog's coat, allowing it to dry naturally.
White vinegar is also a natural flea control for dogs. Simply make up a solution of equal parts white vinegar and water and spray onto your dog's coat.
One of our regular visitors (Stephanie, you know who you are!) sent us this great photo of her Cocker Spaniels.
Stephanie sprays her dogs' coats with vinegar to repel fleas naturally. She swears by it as she says it make their coats beautiful and glossy and it's not expensive - it's a great cheap alternative to those expensive de-lousing pipettes!
If you grow Rosemary in your garden - this one's for you, but even if you don't it's so easy to grow, either in pots or in a border.
Snip a few sprigs off the plant and allow to soak for an hour in a small bowl of boiling water. When the water has cooled remove the sprigs and strain if necessary.
This liquid is 'concentrated' and will need to be diluted before you use it. Top up with a liter of warm water and add to a spray bottle.
Spray your Cocker's coat liberally with the rosemary water and let him lie out in the sunshine to dry off naturally.
Cedar chips or shavings placed inside a pillow case, or your dog's bed is said to repel fleas because, apparently, they don't like the smell...how on earth did they work that one out?
The cedar chips must be contained, especially if your Cocker Spaniel enjoys chewing sticks of wood as cedar could make him sick.
If your dog also has an outside kennel, don't forget to use the cedar there too.
It's said that fleas don't like the taste of garlic (again, how on earth do they know that?)!
Assuming that fleas don't like garlic, If you mix a small amount in his food, it will render your dog's blood unpalatable to fleas. You can buy capsules from health food shops, or you can use powdered garlic.
However, my research also shows that large amounts of garlic can actually harm your pet, but I wasn't able to find out what defines a 'large amount' of garlic.
therefore, that if you plan to use garlic as a flea deterrent, you mention it to your vet first to get his or her opinion on safe
amounts to feed your Cocker Spaniel.
The same applies to brewer's yeast as applies to garlic - fleas don't like the taste!
You can buy brewer’s yeast tablets to add to your pet's food, but I would check with your vet first. He or she will be able to advise you on the correct dosage according to your pet's health and weight.
Pennyroyal is a plant that belongs to the mint family and it's said to deter parasites and can be made into batches of home remedies for fleas.
You might want to consider planting it in the garden near where your dog usually plays or lies and you can also plant it in pots on the patio.
Just be careful if your dog tends to eat plants as it can be poisonous.
The trusty old flea comb is one of the most natural flea controls there is. It's really effective for combing out those pesky parasites but won't remove the eggs, you'll need to use a rinse treatment or spray after combing to do that.
Have a small bowl of warm water by your side as you comb through his coat so that you can dip the comb into the water to remove the fleas from the teeth.
Comb your pet's coat every day until all the fleas have been removed.
Some of the eggs may hatch but if you comb regularly you're bound to
comb them out.
Once you've combed your dog thoroughly you can then spray his coat with your favorite natural flea remedy.
As with any product, natural or otherwise, it's always best to talk them through with your vet first before using them on your Cocker Spaniel.
Your vet will advise you whether the flea treatment you plan to use is suitable and is safe for your pet.
A natural flea remedy, as opposed to prescribed dog medicines, is simply an alternative option.
The medicines your vet may prefer to prescribe for flea removal will be just as safe and they certainly won't harm your dog.
It's simply a matter of choice.
If you have a natural flea removal remedy, either for your pet or for use in your home, why not share it with us and our visitors? You can drop me a line here.
What Do Fleas Look Like? - if you've never seen a flea close up, prepare for the worst - it's not pretty!
Understanding The Flea Life Cycle - understanding their life cycle will help you to tackle the problem head on and with effect.
Flea Bites On Humans And Dogs - flea bites are nasty angry red spots and can cause infection. Learn more and how to treat bites on humans and dogs.
Getting Rid Of Fleas On Your Dog - This does exactly what it says on the tin - how to get rid of those pesky fleas for good!
Getting Rid Of Fleas In The House - If you don't remove them from your home...they'll be back!