Struggling to get rid of fleas without harsh chemicals? Learn how to naturally remove fleas from your home and pet.
Fleas are a common problem that can cause discomfort for both pets and their owners. These tiny insects lay eggs that are difficult to see and eliminate, and many flea control products on the market contain harsh chemicals that can be harmful to pets and humans. If you’re looking to get rid of fleas naturally, there are several steps you can follow to effectively remove fleas from your home and pet.
Step 1: Isolate your pet
Isolating your pet while cleaning your home is crucial when it comes to getting rid of fleas naturally. Fleas can quickly jump from your pet to carpets, furniture, and other areas of your home, leading to a wider infestation. By isolating your pet in a crate or kennel, you can prevent fleas from spreading to other parts of your home while you clean.
Step 2: Wash your pet’s bedding
To remove fleas from your pet’s bedding and blankets, launder them in your washing machine using the hottest and longest setting. Add 2 cups of white vinegar and your usual detergent, but don’t use fabric softener as it can keep flea eggs stuck to the fabric. Dry them on the hottest setting. If you can’t machine wash and tumble dry your pet’s bedding, it needs to be thrown out. Hand-washing and line-drying are not hot enough temperatures to kill fleas and their eggs.
Step 3: Clean your own bedding
To get rid of fleas and flea eggs that may be in your bed, it’s important to clean your bedding, even if your pet doesn’t sleep there. Remove all sheets, blankets, pads and bedspreads and wash them in the hottest setting allowed on the care label. While your bed is bare, clean your mattress thoroughly. Wash your pillows too.
Step 4: Vacuum all floors and upholstery
Vacuuming is crucial to effectively remove fleas from nonwashable upholstery, furniture, and carpets. For furniture, use the vacuum’s crevice attachment in gaps where the back and sides meet the seating platform. Then use the upholstery attachment to clean all sides of the cushion, couch, and chairs. For floors, use the crevice attachment around the base of walls. Vacuum properly in overlapping strokes until you’ve finished the room, turning and repeating at a right angle. Move furniture to clean the floor beneath it.
For even better results, sprinkle diatomaceous earth on upholstery and carpets, wait several hours, and then vacuum it up. Diatomaceous earth dehydrates and breaks down fleas at all stages of their life cycle, which makes them easier to remove. Be sure to clean your vacuum thoroughly after using it to prevent reinfestation.
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Step 5: Use a homemade natural flea spray
To effectively get rid of fleas naturally, using this homemade flea spray along with the other methods can be highly effective. For best results, use the spray daily on soft surfaces throughout your home for two weeks. However, it’s important to avoid using it on non-washable fabrics such as silk or suede. If there is any uncertainty about a fabric, conduct a spot test in an inconspicuous area first.
DIY Flea Spray Recipe
- 1 cup warm water
- 1 cup white vinegar
- 1/4 cup table salt
- 5 drops each rosemary and lavender essential oils
- Add the ingredients to a spray bottle and shake until the salt dissolves. Then add the essential oils.
- Shake well and spray on carpets, sofas, and other soft surfaces daily.
- Store any unused portion in a cool, dark spot.
Step 6: Use homemade flea shampoo
In natural flea removal, it’s essential to get rid of fleas on your pet. Before releasing your dog or cat from isolation, use a homemade flea shampoo to treat them. After they’re dry, use a flea comb and ongoing flea treatments to keep them itch-free. Repeat this process every two weeks.
Homemade Flea Shampoo
- 7 cups water, divided
- 1/4 cup Castile soap
- 5 drops lavender essential oil
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
Combine 4 cups of water with the Castile soap and add the lavender oil. Use this mixture to bathe your pet instead of their usual shampoo. Rinse your pet thoroughly.
Combine 3 cups of water and the apple cider vinegar. Rub this into your pet’s hair, avoiding their nose and eyes. Do not rinse.
After your pet is dry, comb their hair outdoors using a fine-toothed flea comb to remove fleas and flea eggs. Dip the comb into a bowl of water to dislodge fleas and eggs as you comb. Once you’ve finished, pour the contents of a bowl into a plastic bag, knot it tightly, and throw it away. Do not carry it back into your home or dump it outdoors, or surviving fleas may reinfest your home.
Natural flea removal methods take longer than chemical efforts like flea fogging and pesticides. Since flea eggs can hatch over several weeks, you must continue your flea control efforts should for at least two weeks. This includes bathing and using a flea comb on your pet once a week for two weeks. Skipping steps or giving up too soon can cause re-infestation, so be patient and consistent for best results.