Using Dawn for Fleas on Cats

tabby cat lying next to red Christmas tree decoration
Many pet owners use Dawn to bathe their pets when fighting fleas. While this method does work, it may leave your pet's skin quite dry. If you have concerns check with your vet before using this flea control solution. This is a page about using Dawn for fleas on cats.


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October 27, 2014

I found it easiest to put 1/4 cup of original blue Dawn and fill the kitchen sink. Do the forehead, under the chin, and cheeks first. Try your best not to get it in the eyes, nose, mouth or ears. Then slowly introduce your cat to the water. Lather them up really good, keep the cat standing in the water, then rinse them thoroughly.

Wrap them in a big towel and dry them well. You can comb them while in the water or after because the fleas will be dead. Dawn is truly an amazing product. Norman is a very happy boy even his skin feels better. Bathing a Cat with Fleas - sopping kitten

"It really works"!

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October 23, 20170 found this helpful
Top Comment

Dawn does work well however in the case where the cat is allergic to fleas, their skin is so dry and the degreaser in Dawn dries them more, try using Head and Shoulders, it kills the fleas, soothes the itchy skin, and softens them too.

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5 Questions

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February 17, 2015

tabby cat lying next to red Christmas tree decorationI have Dawn Ultra. It is not the normal Dawn so I'm worried if what they added to the Ultra Dawn is unsafe for cats.

By Maya W.


February 18, 20150 found this helpful
Best Answer

Is this meant as a flea bath? If so, you should use it as a one-time thing only. It's probably best to use a dish soap that is free and clear of dyes and perfumes for this. The brand isn't that important. Never use a lavender scented soap.


When bathing cats and kittens in general, I use a small amount of Johnson's no more tears baby shampoo. They usually keep themselves really clean, but sometimes mine gets sand in her fur and I don't want her swallowing that.

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October 27, 2014

I have 2 nine year old inside only cats that have attracted fleas from somewhere. I have given both baths with an organic oatmeal and vinegar based flea shampoo for cats, but they still have fleas. My vet suggested that I make a mixture of apple cider vinegar, Dawn, and water, and bathe both kitties and then add to sprayer and spray entire house, carpet, and furniture to end my flea problem. Has anyone ever tried this and if so how much of each and did it work?

By Barbara A


October 27, 20141 found this helpful

I'd just go to Walmart and buy their flea and tic meds that you drop by a dropper on the back of their works great! Or...just buy some at your vet.

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January 19, 20150 found this helpful

Yeah you can buy Wal-Mart drops, if you want to use toxic poison in your house! There are many reasons to NOT use those drops!
If you have small children that will be touching the animals often, no!


If you have a herding breed that might have the genetic disposition for being deathly sensitive to normal doses of things, no!
If you have someone in the house chemically allergic or sensitive, no!
If you've ever watched Chemerical, you definitely know, no!

I'm even cautious to use Dawn! Why? Because I know those chemical warnings are no joke!

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May 31, 20170 found this helpful

Just don't buy Hartz!! It's been known to actually cause fatality in cats!

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October 17, 2013

We have used two kinds of flea chemicals on our cats over a 2 week period, but they still have some. They are not scratching much now, but they are licking. I have stripped my bed twice now, but I am still seeing the fleas. How do I use Dawn to get rid of the fleas?

Please help us.

By Gwendolyn S.

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August 14, 2012

I have two cats. One cat is 2 years old and the other is 4 years old. How much Dawn should I use and how much water?

By Janet H

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