In the past, flea control has been done pretty much exclusively with chemicals. These chemicals have been linked to nerve damage and even death for some pets. With the number of pet deaths rising from chemical flea controls, we decided to look for safer alternatives.
The first thing you will want to do is clean up your yard, keep your bushes and your shrubs trimmed up. You will also need to rake up any stray leaves that are hiding under the porch areas and around shrubs; these are areas where fleas like to hide. If you have flowerbeds, consider using some cedar mulch, as the cedar is a natural flea repellent. You can also add cedar shavings to your dog’s house and bedding to help repel fleas.
In addition to cleaning up your yard, you can also use plants that help repel fleas in your landscaping. A few plants that help repel fleas are:
• Pennyroyal (repels mosquitoes too)
• Lemongrass (great for mosquitoes!)
Once you have the yard in order, you can add beneficial nematodes that will help control fleas by killing them in the larval and pupal stages in the soil. Nematodes are multi-cellular animals that live in the soil and are commonly called roundworms.
In addition to nematodes, you can also use a natural product called diatomaceous earth, or D-Earth. D-Earth is a powdery substance that is made from the crushed fossils of single-celled plants. It kills fleas by destroying the waxy coating that covers them. It also dries out the flea’s bodily fluids, killing them. It can be sprinkled around the yard and even on your pet’s bedding. Not only does D-Earth repel fleas, it also repels roaches, silverfish, ants, bed bugs, flies, lice, scorpions, crickets and more.
Now that the yard is taken care of, its time to take a look at your dog and preventing and removing fleas on him. You will want to check him periodically for ticks and also for fleas. Make sure you do this outside, you don’t want fleas in the house! Using a flea comb, brush your dog, after each stroke, dunk the comb in soapy water this will kill the fleas. Do this until you have combed the entire dog. If you find a tick, be sure to remove it properly. When you are finished, dump the flea water down the toilet to prevent spreading them back into your yard or home.
Once your dog has been combed, you can also bathe him in a natural shampoo that contains oils that repel fleas, such as Natural Chemisty DeFlea Concentrate Shampoo. These natural shampoos gently cleanse the skin and are pH balanced with pure ingredients and botanical extracts, you can even use it on puppies (unlike chemical flea treatments).
There are also some natural supplements that help prevent fleas in your dog, one is Brewer’s Yeast with Garlic from NaturVet. The yeast will assist in controlling shedding and promote healthy skin while boosting the immune system. The combination of the two seems to be a one-two punch against fleas and many dog owners have had great success using just the supplement.
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