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Is it possible to prevent fleas naturally?

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 

Hi there!  We are bringing home a Boxer puppy in the next few weeks and are wondering how to handle flea prevention.  We are not excited to immediately go the Frontline/Advantix route if there are effective natural options but don't want to find ourselves with a flea infested home soon, either.  We live in a condo with two neighbor dogs (both owners do use a topical flea prevention, fwiw) and are worried that she will be exposed to fleas.

 

We bought a flea prevention natural shampoo that we plan to use regularly.  I've read in natural pet care books to use shampoo, brush/comb frequently, and to use essential oils on their collars that repel fleas.

 

Any other advice?  Do you think this is a realistic possibility, or am I a naive new puppy owner ;) ?

post #2 of 41

I have not found any natural / nontoxic flea remedies.  I use a flea comb on my dog, which is about as nontoxic as you can get.  I figure that gets some of the fleas.  But if my dog is not on a regular medication, we end up with an infestation.  

 

We use Comfortis.  It's not topical - it's a pill.  I don't remember how it works, but I picked it because I don't want the topical flea killer around my kids.  

post #3 of 41

Absolutely. First you need to ensure your dog is in tip top health. For me that means no vaccines or chemical flee/tick/worm medications combined with species appropriate raw diet (prey model) and fresh clean (fluoride free) water. A couple of weeks after we got our puppy (now 10 months old) I noticed a couple of flees on him and even one or two on ds's shirt. I did buy some diatomaceous earth (DE) but didn't need to use it because they went away using a flower/gem essence formula called pests. It took two days to get rid of the flees and they had not come back. Garlic is also a very good flee deterrent. You can either give whole raw garlic cloves or garlic water which is a few cloves of garlic seeped overnight in half a gallon of pure water, you add some to the dog's water bowl. 

 

 

post #4 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post

Absolutely. First you need to ensure your dog is in tip top health. For me that means no vaccines or chemical flee/tick/worm medications combined with species appropriate raw diet (prey model) and fresh clean (fluoride free) water. A couple of weeks after we got our puppy (now 10 months old) I noticed a couple of flees on him and even one or two on ds's shirt. I did buy some diatomaceous earth (DE) but didn't need to use it because they went away using a flower/gem essence formula called pests. It took two days to get rid of the flees and they had not come back. Garlic is also a very good flee deterrent. You can either give whole raw garlic cloves or garlic water which is a few cloves of garlic seeped overnight in half a gallon of pure water, you add some to the dog's water bowl. 

 

 

garlic is toxic to dogs...onions as well and raw potato peelings.

 

DE if you are going to use it in your house around your kids/pets should be FOOD Grade..

 

I strongly disagree that feeding your dog a good diet and flouride free water will make a difference to the fleas who will still enjoy slurping your dog's now more healthy blood... It's kinda ridiculous. Flea eggs and fleas can survive quite handily without a host for quite a while.. Unfortunately at some point chemicals might have to come in. It's way easier to prevent them than eradicate once there is an infestation... Some animals are very allergic to fleas (my dog) and  using a chemical to prevent them is worth the trade off in our case.
 

Personally, no you cannot treat fleas non chemically. Period. You can make things better but at some point you have to use a chemical to kill them and their eggs.

post #5 of 41


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ldavis24 View Post



garlic is toxic to dogs...onions as well and raw potato peelings.

 

Not entirely accurate

 

http://www.natural-dog-health-remedies.com/garlic-for-dogs.html

 

 

Quote:
Does that mean garlic is unsafe for dogs? Not quite. The key to safe use of garlic on dogs is the dosage level and frequency of use. For a dog to develop Heinz-body anemia, he would have to eat over 0.5% of his body weight in onions to even begin the oxidative process. It means a healthy 60-pound dog would have to eat a whole 5-oz onion, or several cloves of garlic, to start the Heinz-body process. Since red blood cells are constantly regenerated from the bone marrow, a dog would likely need to ingest this much amount of onion or garlic on a repeated basis to cause permanent harm.

 

 

DE if you are going to use it in your house around your kids/pets should be FOOD Grade..

 

The link, which you obviously didn't read, was FOOD grade.

 

I strongly disagree that feeding your dog a good diet and flouride free water will make a difference to the fleas who will still enjoy slurping your dog's now more healthy blood... It's kinda ridiculous. Flea eggs and fleas can survive quite handily without a host for quite a while.. Unfortunately at some point chemicals might have to come in. It's way easier to prevent them than eradicate once there is an infestation... Some animals are very allergic to fleas (my dog) and  using a chemical to prevent them is worth the trade off in our case.
 

Personally, no you cannot treat fleas non chemically. Period. You can make things better but at some point you have to use a chemical to kill them and their eggs.

 

We will have to disagree, you most certainly can treat flees non chemically and those that are raw fed with clean water to drink are much better able deal with flees. Dogs that are allergic to flees have an immune issue, likely from vaccines and the chemicals ingested or put on their fur.

 

 


 

 

post #6 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post

Absolutely. First you need to ensure your dog is in tip top health. For me that means no vaccines or chemical flee/tick/worm medications combined with species appropriate raw diet (prey model) and fresh clean (fluoride free) water. A couple of weeks after we got our puppy (now 10 months old) I noticed a couple of flees on him and even one or two on ds's shirt. I did buy some diatomaceous earth (DE) but didn't need to use it because they went away using a flower/gem essence formula called pests. It took two days to get rid of the flees and they had not come back. Garlic is also a very good flee deterrent. You can either give whole raw garlic cloves or garlic water which is a few cloves of garlic seeped overnight in half a gallon of pure water, you add some to the dog's water bowl. 

 

 



So your dog is not on a heartworm preventative? 

post #7 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SubliminalDarkness View Post





So your dog is not on a heartworm preventative? 


Absolutely not.

 

post #8 of 41

Some people are able to control naturally.  I had been able to use nothing for a good 7 or 8 years, just kept healthy with diet etc.  However, last year we got hit HARD.  So I went back to frontline.  I hate using it but nothing else was working.  

 

Fleas definitely do attack "weaker" animals etc.  My old cat was covered where my other cat and dogs you couldnt find hardly one on.  Its kind of like in gardening, if all the plants are healthy there is less chance for pests to attack (but it still can happen)

 

Garlic is a wonderful supplement for dogs...it is toxic in extremely large doses but many many people use it as a supplement and medicinally.  

 

I know people who have had great luck with MSM supplementation and also using a product called "Bug off" which is mostly garlic.

post #9 of 41

you might be able to "control" fleas naturally but you aren't going to get rid of them once you have them. And once you have them they are going to multiple and multiple and eventually chemicals will be needed. Diet helps but is certainly doesn't PREVENT. Even the healthiest of animals get fleas. It's just the way it is.

 

My dog is allergic to fleas for a mystery reason, we don't even know how she spent the first 6 months of her life it just is the way it is.

 

I avoid using garlic as a supplement for my dog primarily because while it is toxic in higher quantities that doesn't mean a dog won't have an adverse reaction of some kind to a small amount. Every dog is different just like every human is different...

 

Sorry I skimmed the link missed the Food grade part. I was just saying in general it needs to be food grade. We use it on our chicken coop for mites and other buggies. Love the stuff.

 

Not using a heart worm preventative can be good and bad depending on where you live...

 

I don't use one until summer when the temps are going to be above 58 degrees continually. I think it is stupid not to use one during seasons in which the larvae can develop. I read a whole big thing about the heart worm life cycle and I do think it is CRAZY that vets insist your dog needs a heart worm pill during the winter (if you live in colder climates) where it is LITERALLY impossible for your dog to get it, if only because of the temperatures. That said, I have known people who refused to do heart worm pills for their dogs and I know at least one dog who died from trying to be treated for the heart worms he got. It is a terribly sad thing that can be very easily prevented.

post #10 of 41
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Edited by kristandthekids - 1/16/13 at 6:40pm
post #11 of 41

vacuum too... a lot..

interesting about the humidity, I haven't ever heard that before.

post #12 of 41

In the south, many fleas are becoming "immune" to advantage and the topical stuff.  I decided I didn't want the topical stuff around my house so we do Comfortis too.  It works well. However, it's not natural.  I am as granola as they come and I have not found a way to keep fleas out without comfortis/advantage, etc.  No amount of fleas are acceptable to me, they will multiply and my dog is highly allergic to them. This is one of the times I go with the non-natural choice, unfortunatley.  

 

 

But, I can say that if you already have them in your house, vaccuuming is the best way to get rid of them.  

post #13 of 41


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ldavis24 View Post

you might be able to "control" fleas naturally but you aren't going to get rid of them once you have them. And once you have them they are going to multiple and multiple and eventually chemicals will be needed. Diet helps but is certainly doesn't PREVENT. Even the healthiest of animals get fleas. It's just the way it is.

 



Again, I was able to get rid of fleas only using a vibrational remedy, they fleas did not multiply and multiply, they literally disappeared withing two days. And I do think diet (raw prey model) prevents fleas, my dog has never gotten another one since.

 

 

Quote:
I avoid using garlic as a supplement for my dog primarily because while it is toxic in higher quantities that doesn't mean a dog won't have an adverse reaction of some kind to a small amount. Every dog is different just like every human is different...

 

Same could be said for insecticides. I would rather take my chances with garlic. As I mentioned, garlic water is an option if you don't want to give garlic cloves.

post #14 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post


 



Again, I was able to get rid of fleas only using a vibrational remedy, they fleas did not multiply and multiply, they literally disappeared withing two days. And I do think diet (raw prey model) prevents fleas, my dog has never gotten another one since.


vibrational?? Enlighten me. 

It is also possible that you could have fleas and not even know it, I'm not saying you do but just something to think about...

 

The idea that a flea won't jump on an animal that eats a certain diet is just ridiculous to me. A flea doesn't care what an animal eats, if they have the opportunity or need they will jump on any dog. If the raw diet actually stopped fleas, wolves wouldn't ever have them.

 

post #15 of 41


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ldavis24 View Post




vibrational?? Enlighten me. 

 

Vibrational, as in flower essences. The Pests combo makes an animal's body energetically unwelcome to flees and tics.

 

It is also possible that you could have fleas and not even know it, I'm not saying you do but just something to think about...

 

Maybe, but I doubt it, I check him very regularly.

 

 

The idea that a flea won't jump on an animal that eats a certain diet is just ridiculous to me. A flea doesn't care what an animal eats, if they have the opportunity or need they will jump on any dog. If the raw diet actually stopped fleas, wolves wouldn't ever have them.

 

Fleas tend to "attack" animals that are in less than optimal health, dogs that are fed a species appropriate raw diet tend to be more healthy. Especially if they haven't been poisoned by insecticides and had their immune system damaged by vaccines (see Hayward study to understand how vaccines create auto-antibodies). Healthy animals tend not to have an out of control flee issue, so any fleas can more easily be gotten rid of or prevented in the first place. Wolves are wild animals, and a subject to way more stress than dogs that are well cared for by humans. Stress is a major immune depressor.
 

 



 


Edited by Mirzam - 5/11/11 at 12:48pm
post #16 of 41

http://petpoisonhelpline.com/IsThatPoisonous/KitchenToxins/

This is the site we use at our hospital.

Garlic in large...or chronic doses can be toxic.  I have seen a dog die because of garlic ingestion...it happens.

 

"Onions, garlic, chives and leeks (Allium species):
When onions and garlic are ingested in large or chronic amounts, it result in Heinz body formation and anemia. Cats are more sensitive than dogs to Allium toxiciosis. Clinical signs are generally secondary to the anemia, with resultant weakness, lethargy and pale mucous membranes. Avoid using onion or garlic powder chronically in pet food, and make sure your pet doesn't ingest large amounts!"

 

Even the healthiest and best fed dogs can and do get fleas and heartworm.

 

BTW flea eggs can lie dormant up to a year in the environment until conditions change.

post #17 of 41

Fleas aren't that big of a deal here but this year I am making my own mix of oils similar to this http://www.sergeantsnatural.com/products.html Prehaps someone in a area that is more flea prone could try this product and let me know if it works. I've only noticed one flea on my dog last year and that was without using flea products and after taking her to the park

post #18 of 41

As a dog groomer, I see what fleas are capable of on a daily basis...and as a result, my dog is on Advantage, all of the other shop dogs are on advantage, and any time we see a dog with fleas, we recommend Advantage to them. It's the only thing I've found to be 100%, and to me, it's much better to Advantage the dogs once a month than deal with flea infestations, tapeworm, flea allergies, hot spots, etc...

 

I haven't found anything natural that works.

 

Also, I agree that diet has nothing to do with fleas. 

post #19 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by ananas View Post

As a dog groomer, I see what fleas are capable of on a daily basis...and as a result, my dog is on Advantage, all of the other shop dogs are on advantage, and any time we see a dog with fleas, we recommend Advantage to them. It's the only thing I've found to be 100%, and to me, it's much better to Advantage the dogs once a month than deal with flea infestations, tapeworm, flea allergies, hot spots, etc...

 

I haven't found anything natural that works.

 

Also, I agree that diet has nothing to do with fleas. 

This makes me laugh, not at you at all, but at my dog because we used advantage on her and it didn't do a thing. No one at the vet's office would believe us that it didn't work! Switched to Frontline and had better success but we are going to Interceptor, I think that is what it's called, The oral one anyway when its time to re-up our supply.

post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by ananas View Post

As a dog groomer, I see what fleas are capable of on a daily basis...and as a result, my dog is on Advantage, all of the other shop dogs are on advantage, and any time we see a dog with fleas, we recommend Advantage to them. It's the only thing I've found to be 100%, and to me, it's much better to Advantage the dogs once a month than deal with flea infestations, tapeworm, flea allergies, hot spots, etc...

 

I haven't found anything natural that works.

 

Also, I agree that diet has nothing to do with fleas. 


As a dog groomer, how many raw fed, unvaccinated, chemical free dogs do you see? Very few, if any, I would think because groomers won't allow dogs that are unvaccinated. Diet has much to do with flees, a raw species appropriate diet provides the best nutrition for a dog to have a strong immune system and a truly healthy dog will not get flee investations, nor will they get allergies, hot spots and tapeworms, and if they do get tapeworms or a the odd flee, their bodies have all they need to rid themselves of them.

 

 

 

 

 

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