DIY Flea Removal

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Need to get rid of those pesky fleas, but don’t want to pay for store bought products? Here’s a cheap, easy mix:
Mix one cup liquid dish soap, one cup white vinegar, and one quart of warm water in a large bowl.
Transfer the mix into a squeeze bottle (like an old shampoo or body wash bottle).
Shake before using.
Wash your dog with mix as you normally would.
Try to allow the mixture to sit for about five minutes before rinsing out.


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  • Deanna

    I gotta tell ya, we had fleas this summer (first time in 15yrs) on our 2 Goldens and kitty. Since my grandson has medical issues and comes to visit often I couldn’t use chemicals. So after TONS of research I found that washing the dogs in a dawn/white vinegar mixture with a little tea tree oil 2 times a week and plain dawn on our kitty once a week along with daily vacuuming and washing the pets bedding every other day helped to get rid of the fleas. It took about 6 weeks but NO chemicals were used. Of course I washed our slipcovers and bed sheets once week. It was quit an accomplishment. It can be done : )

  • Candis

    It is very easy for a flea infestation to spread throughout the whole house. That happened to me a few years ago when I was living with roommates. They can get into the carpeting and live there. We had to hire a professional to get rid of them.

  • Jennifer

    i have also heard, getting ready to try it, for another non-chemical way was to use food grade diatamaceous earth…..can’t wait to try it….fleas are bad in Texas!!

      • Cheryl

        I’m curf\rently using diatamaceous earth for the first time and after 1 week i had to break down and give our dog a Capstar pill i’m not giving up on the diatamaceous i’m just thinking it’s me and i’m not patient enough. the cats aren’t as bothered so the diatamaceous earth seems to be ok for them.

        • Tony Ramsey

          I add a tablespoon of food-grade, diatomaceous earth to each of our dogs food, at least once a month, too.

    • Crystal Custer

      diatomaceous earth (food grad) and baking soda mixed (1/2) cup each & 10 essential oils mixed in. will kill fleas lingering in the carpet. Shake it on wait about 15 min. and vacuum. If you have a ‘removable bag’ dispose of right away. If you container is solid take it apart and wash it hot water!

  • Marie

    We had a similar problem…had doggy-sat a friend’s dogs without knowing they were riddled with flea eggs…the doggies left and a few weeks later we had live fleas all over the house…then they started nibbling at everyone’s ankles…it was horrible! Found a, EASY (non-chemical) post about removing fleas from carpet and furniture…simply sprinkle regular table salt all over the carpets and furniture and leave for 48 hours or so…it just dried those little pesky critters right up. It was VERY inexpensive too! (That table salt goes along way!) Make sure you vacuum very well afterwards though…I repeated the process one time just to be sure (and washed the bedding of course) but they were gone!

  • penny

    the original dawn works great it kills fleas in seconds. My sister and I did a bit of research on how to kill fleas on our cats, after their flea meds stopped working. The best one we found and worked great was to bath them with the original dawn dish soap and use a flea comb on their head and face as any of the fleas that are close to the head will run to the face and put them in soapy water then to treat your house if you have carpet sprinkle baking soda on it then salt along the baseboards and any dark cool places. They say to leave it for 48 hrs or more the baking soda dries the fleas out and the salt will dry the eggs out you can put just all the salt over the floor but it is much harder to get out of your carpet and the fleas lay their eggs in cool dark places like by walls or bricks if you have them in your home. We did this and left it for a week and have not had a problem since luckily they came out with a pill for the cats to take that are just like the ones that dogs take that kills fleas for a month and they have been great ever since

  • Tami

    To make a homemade flea trap, put a bowl of dish soap and water on the affected floor (make it sudsy). Shine a lamp directly over it and watch the fleas jump in.

  • Terri

    ANY shampoo (as well as dawn) used full strength will kill fleas, the key is getting them out of your house so they don’t keep getting back on the dog. I’ve been a dog groomer for 20 years and I never use flea shampoo, or vinegar or any other “remedy”. You just have to get rid of them in the house, and wash the dog a couple more times to get rid of newly hatched fleas. Or put a spot on treatment on them such as Frontline or Advantage.

  • Kerrie- Vet Tech

    I am a Vet tech and while Dawn does work, it will also dry out your pets skin. Therefore you will spend more money in the long run at the Veterinarian combatting skin issues and fleas.

    • Steve Belflower

      I have used dawn for years and never run into a problem with dry skin on either of my dogs! Seems odd that if this is so harmful to animals skin, why do we see it used time and again to remove oil from animals at oil spills?

  • chad

    BTW. Kerrie. Vet tech. keep your comments to yourself. your a vet-tech. not a scientist. let people use a cheap and effective way that is non chemical on their pets. no one needs your “Im a vet tech comments”. As usual, people have to make their negative comments about things that work. so SHUT UP about it drying out the skin. Just saying

    • peggy

      I agree this same so called vet tec said on another site that if people could not afford to take thier pets to the vet you shouldnt own one and stop being stingy and pay the money .if vet’s wasn’t so damn money hungry people could afford to its sad when it costs more to take your pet to the vet than it dose to take yourself to the doctor. Anyway glad you told her .

    • chris

      WOW CHAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is the first time I’ve had to look for anything natural to use on a pet since I’ve only had her for a year and a half but you and Peggy make me not want to be on any of these sites looking up information. I have my pet because she is my service dog/best friend. I just feel that we are all allowed our opinions but there is no need to be so rude and nasty. So I will go else where for information

  • Ginger

    Chiming in ……if you have concerns with drying the skin ….use a conditioner
    after shampooing …… allergic skin sensitive dogs should probably be bathed in a shampoo for dogs coat and ph, many are available …..the shampoo will kill the fleas too ….just leave it on a few minutes and using a flea comb on head is a great idea too
    I like Isle of Dogs, Chris Christiansen, Pure Paws, Crown Royal, BIO Groom, products a lot…….also have used the Dawn or Ivory on our Samoyeds in the past and know many show dog handlers who do too with good results ….but use conditioner after ……our hobby is dog showing in conformation and performance events so have given my fair of dog baths owning Northern breeds 35 years ….just my 2 cents ok …..hope it helps

  • Ashley

    Fleas are really bad every year at our house. I have three dogs and three cats. Every time fleas get into the house I sprinkle salt all over the floors and carpets. Let it sit for 2 days then vacuum it. After you vacuum do it again. Repeat this for about a week and all the fleas should be gone! The fleas get onto the salt and it dries them out and kills them.

  • Anna R.

    I definitely agree with the Vet Tech. I’ve used Dawn and it is effective, particularly in cleaning a dog’s coat but I’d suggest using it sparingly. It really does dry out the dog’s fur. My dog is now chewing the shit out of his skin because it’s so dried out and irritated. Bad idea!! I understand that vets charge way too much, but if you can only afford dish soap as a flea remedy for your animal, you probably shouldn’t have a pet, that’s ridiculous. I’m a broke college student and I can still take care of my dog…it depends on where your priorities are. I’m sure if you’re spending money elsewhere, you could budget much better and spend it on your pets. It’s irresponsible to own an animal and then not take care of it.

    • chris

      Anna I have found that using organic coconut oil on my doggies dry skin is very helpful..I have found it in the baking aisle at walmart beside the oils..mine is in a white jar, it is hard like lard but will melt in your hand and a little goes a long way

  • Donna Willis

    Coconut oil is good for dry skin and conditions hair, now here’s what is interesting it smothers fleas. Try washing the dog with dawn then use the oil after I’m sure you will like the results.

  • Sandra

    I’ve noticed a lot of critasizm towards each other. We all have pets for our own reason and it’s no one else’s business but the owner and our financial situation may have changed since we got our animal so we don’t have the right to be downing someone if u don’t know that just puts the frosting on the cake making things even worse. Dawn is an excellent cleanser for ur animal but since they show professionals washing oil, etc off of ducks-penguins that shows u it’s gonna be an oil striper so simple use a good conditioner and if u don’t know how to make organic lotion theirs thousands of people on eBay, Amazon, etc that do. Once ur animal is good and dry put some organic lotion on them and rub it in really well becuz they love the taste of organic lotion and will lick it off plus u can get organic sprayable lotion which makes the task go a tad quicker. When my parents got a dash-hound puppy a few yrs back he was fairly healthy but boy did he ever have issues w allergies and his chewing resulted in his skin becoming horribly dry so I made him some Unscented lotion for his body and a big boy smelling handsome lotion to put on his head, nose, & chest that way if he met some girl he like he’d smell good. Anyway by the time he was 8mths his skin issues finally resolved and he stopped trying to eat himself alive. Problem solved for a few $’s a mth.

    • Tsgraves

      If your dogs skin is dry just massage in coconut oil and let it set in their skin over night . It’s good for them too so even if they lick themselves it’s fine . Also make sure it’s not just food allergies because grains , corn in dog food will make them itchy. FYI., just from my experiences

  • S. Caulder

    I was trying to read the information about the DIY Flea Removal but there was an ad in the way and I couldn’t get rid of it. Not a good idea to have ads OVER the text.

  • Willie Sanderson

    Fleas in your carpet , sprinkle some Borax Powder Laundry Soap all over , 1 hour later , fleas dead and carpet has a fresh scent , ask your vet

    • Cheryl

      I’m going to try the Borax laundry detergent household hint for removing fleas from home carpeting, etc. Thank you for sharing this!