Getting Rid of Fleas Naturally

December 4, 2009

Getting Rid of Fleas in Bedding. Upclose photo of a flea.Isn't it pitiful for your pet to scratch and whine, and not even be able to catch a good snooze, because fleas are tormenting him or her? Meanwhile, you are torn between watching them suffer, or taking a chance on doing more harm than good by using chemicals or medicines you don't really feel good about using.


I have a very old, blind, infirm Eskimo Spitz who I love dearly, and would be afraid to use any sort of medication or chemical on, or in, because his system is delicate now and his skin is also tender from age. I have been using this method on him, and he is just fine. I think you will love my solution:

If your pet has really thick or matted fur, or has scratched until she or he has sores, you should probably trim it back as close as possible the first time with just some scissors, so the skin can get plenty of air to help the healing process. Then go to Dollar General; they have lice killing shampoo in two-bottle packages for around $8.00. It contains pyrethrins, a natural insecticide derived from chrysanthemums, and is safe enough for small children, obviously.

Bathe your pet by diluting the shampoo a tiny bit and rubbing it deeply into her fur and skin, for several minutes, just a nice, slow all-over massage (ears too). Then submerse her into a medium amount of warm water. Rinse her off, and do not rinse her again. This will not only kill the fleas, it will keep them off for several weeks.


You can also use the garden center variety of liquid intended to spray for aphids on roses (which is also pyrethrins) in the washer for laundering her bedding and in your carpet shampooer to rid your home of the fleas.

I know this will help her, and you, feel better and you can get back to doing what you do best: lovin' that furry baby!

By Gloria Hayes from Darien, GA

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July 5, 2013

Before bed, sprinkle salt along all baseboards and along floors around furniture. You can also do this before you leave the house for the day.


Simply vacuum up after you have allowed it to sit over night or during a work day.


January 13, 2014

Our old cat sadly passed away. Every time the vacuum cleaner was switched on, he would appear. Yes, no cleaning would be done until he was done first He would turn over to vacuum each side with the pipe. He had no fleas.


April 6, 2005

I use a fine tooth flea comb on my cats daily and never have any flea problems!


34 Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

August 17, 2012

I recently started to get bit. I didn't know if it was fleas or bed bugs because it was only in one room of the house until they started to spread. I have no pets so I have no idea where they are coming from. I need help. I have a two month old, so I don't want to use chemicals, but willing to try anything because I just killed two fleas in her baby crib. :[

By Fatima


August 18, 20120 found this helpful
Best Answer

Sprinkle your carpet with table salt and let it sit overnight. Then in the morning vacuum it up. Repeat everyday for a week. The salt dries out the eggs and larvae. Good luck! It worked for me


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August 19, 20120 found this helpful
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Good tip. Also, put a pie tin or shallow dish under a night light. Fill with water and a little dish washing liquid. The fleas will flock to the heat, and the liquid breaks the surface adhesion to the water and they drown.


Same goes for gnats or fruit flies, but it's in a cup with apple cider vinegar. Both work really well.


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August 20, 20120 found this helpful
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I'd sprinkle salt, but leave it on for longer than a day before vacuuming it up. I also put about an inch of oil into a jar, walk around the room first thing in the morning (the fleas are hungry), pick them off of me, and put them in the jar where they drown in the oil. Do this several times during the day. You'll be surprised at how many you find. After a few weeks, they'll be gone. Unfortunately, you don't need pets to get fleas; they will often come in on you.


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August 21, 20123 found this helpful
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UPDATE: we thought we had the fleas under control when I posted on the 19th. We were wrong, walking from the shower to the bedroom yesterday morning I 'collected' several fleas on my legs!


At first skeptical but made hopeful by further Internet research, my husband hotfooted it down to ASDA (British WalMart) and brought home 20lbs of cooking salt (cost £3). We sprinkled a thick layer, worked it onto carpet and upholstery with a broom. We over bought on the salt, btw, it took less than 5lbs of salt to completely cover our aprx 700 sqft of carpet and upholstery.

WOW!!! The salt works, and works very quickly! We picked a couple of fleas off of our trouser legs after we'd spread it, threw the fleas into the salted carpet and watched them die. They hopped, shorter lengths and lower heights with every hop. Finally (within seconds) those fleas went over on their sides, writhed for another couple of seconds and then simply stopped moving. Dead as doornails.

We left the salt down and this morning walked all through the house in short trousers-not one single flea.

We'll leave it down until tomorrow and then vacuum it up. We'll also repeat once a week until freezing winter hits. My husband is seriously considering going under the house and salting the crawl space to keep the fleas from congregating under the house to await our going lax with the salting (which isn't going to happen, salting the carpet and upholstery just became a regular part of my housekeeping routine).


Stefanilynn deserves a HUGE prize for tipping the Thrifty Fun community to this, it really does work, we're shocked. Salt is so much safer and so much less expensive than commercial pesticides, I am truly grateful to her for posting her reply to Fatima's question.

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August 24, 2011

Black dog in yard near a pink water tub.How can I rid my dogs of fleas without using chemicals?

By Lucy


August 26, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

Mix the following and shampoo dog with it: 2 parts baby shampoo and 1 part Lemon Joy dish washing liquid. It has to be the lemon Joy. Received this info a few years ago from a vet blog. Tried it and it worked!

August 29, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

1. Add active yeast to your dog's diet each day (about 1 tsp)
2. Use aloe infused baby wipes on your dog each day.

3. Add 4 tsp. pure vanilla extract to one liter of water. Shake well and mist your dog. Do this at least 3 days per week.
4. Wash bedding regularly in hot water with a cap of bleach.

5. If infestation is in carpets, you will need to use a room bomb. DO NOT leave pet inside while bombing! Follow directions carefully.
(If you have a very heavy infestation you will probably have to use a prescription treatment.)

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August 11, 2010

I have used Frontline on my dogs and cat. One dog almost died. I have used salt on the carpet and still have fleas. What can I do now?

By becky from CA


August 12, 20100 found this helpful

Bathe him with Dawn dishwashing detergent, apply diatomaceous earth (garden grade, not pool grade), being careful that you nor he breathe in the dust. DE is used in home, garden, yard, for many kinds of bugs.



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August 12, 20100 found this helpful

Dry Borax in all carpets and animal beds. Leave for 2 weeks before you vacuum. Bathe-fleacomb-whatever to give some relief to pet. Outdoor yard, the only thing I know is Sevin dust. Build immune system, Excellent immune system and fleas are just not interested. Raw diet best. No corn, wheat or soy. Wrecks skin and sets up for allergy and sickness.

August 13, 20100 found this helpful

Wash dogs in Dawn dishwash liquid. Follow up with Avon Skin So Soft Bath Oil rinse, or sprayed on. On carpets, bite the bullet and get Flea Spray. Raid works good. In the yard, buy 20 Mule Team Borax and sprinkle lavishly. Have to do it all at the same time. But it works like a charm. Also, bedding and cloth things can be washed with Borax to kill flea eggs. Worked for us.

August 13, 20100 found this helpful

Borax powder!

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May 16, 2012

Looking for a safe way to rid our trailer of fleas that won't be harmful to us or our little dog?
Thank you in advance for any and all helpful hints.

By Fazy from FL

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December 14, 2011

I really need to get rid of fleas on my cat. I am wondering if baking soda will help in the carpet and maybe on the cat.

By Karen K from Lowell, MI


December 14, 20110 found this helpful

We had a flea problem inside and outside our home. A friend of mine gave me a bucket of Diatomaceous earth or also called DE. She bought it from the local feed store.

My friend uses it on her livestock as well as in her food to keep her wheat berries that she grinds in her mill pest free. It coats the wheat berries but since it's food safe it's okay that she consumes it. Make sure the kind you buy is food safe. Some pool companies sell it but that is NOT the kind I am talking about.

When you touch it, it feels like chalk. Its abrasiveness is what kills fleas, ants, cockroaches and more. It dries them up from the inside out! It is not a chemical. Safe to use in the garden as well!

It is recommended that when you use it to wear a mask to avoid breathing in the dust.

How to use- I reused an old baking powder container as it had tiny holes in the container. I sprinkled it lightly into our carpets to let it settle down and let it sit for about 15 minutes. Then, I vacuumed it up. Don't worry about trying to get it all out. The DE will work its way down into the carpet fibers and there will do its work. Anytime a pest comes into contact with it, it will dehydrate them.

One application lasts about a year. It is safe around pets and children. We have not had a single flea found inside or outside our home since! I also used it around our home to get rid of the many ant hills in our yard.

Because it's also food safe, I sprinkle about a half teaspoon in our cat's food dish. When they consume it, it also kills internal parasites.

I called the feed store to see how much it was and they sell a 50 pound bag for $20. It may vary in your neighborhood, but just to give you an idea. The bag she bought has lasted her 7 plus years and the ice cream bucket size she gave me hardly looks touched. A little bit goes a long way.

DE has many more uses. Go here to read more about it. This link (of which I am not affiliated with) has good information:

December 14, 20110 found this helpful

I also recommend Diatomaceous Earth (DE). Great stuff! It is a :silica: source and is great for your hair, skin & nails!! Will keep pets parasite (worm) free & when put on their skin, kills fleas. Just be very careful around the face & don't let them inhale or get in their eyes! Be sure to get on feet & under belly & chin & especially at base of tail! Won't hurt pets who lick themselves!

December 14, 20110 found this helpful

I wouldn't try baking soda on the actual cat :/ That's just my opinion. You don't know what kind of reaction it might have.

December 16, 20110 found this helpful

Not baking soda, but boric acid. Obviously do not put on your cat but you can sprinkle it in between furniture cushions, carpet areas the cat can't walk on, around baseboards. It has worked much better for me (and less expensive!) than flea treatments or exterminators.

Editor's Note: Boric acid is toxic to pets so use caution when treating household.

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August 25, 2011

What can I put on my furniture to rid it of fleas? They are driving me nuts; I have used borax and diatomaceous earth. I need to use all natural because both my dog and I have allergies. Any help is greatly appreciated!

By sbobo from Tacoma, WA


August 26, 20110 found this helpful

I've heard that lemon juice works. Do a search for "using lemon juice to kill fleas" for instructions.


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August 26, 20110 found this helpful

Really don't understand how 20 Mule Team Borax isn't doing the job. When you spread 2 to 2 and a half cups per average room (dry) leave it for 2 weeks before you vacuum. It has never failed. If your pets are out of the house in flea infested areas, then sitting with you, you might be picking up their new found critters. Treat your yard with cedercide granules. Inexpensive as a 5 pound bag last more than a year.

August 26, 20110 found this helpful

You have to vacuum first with a flea collar in the bag if your vacuum has a bag. Also, put salt down, sprinkle it all under cushions, sheets, etc. Cover it and it will kill the eggs.

Also make sure after it has sat for a while, vacuum it up. Then vacuum all the time, every day to get at the fleas. I use a flea comb and a bowl of soapy water. Also, keep weeds down. Sometimes the weather is to blame.

Older animals attract fleas more and they need to be on the topical for this, every month, especially if they have allergies like my dog does, and has to have topical treatments. If even one flea gets at it it gets all swollen up. Bless her heart.

Don't forget the apple cider vinegar in their water, I have always done this when I don't forget. I put about one capful of apple cider vinegar in a large pot of water for the dogs at least once a day. Also you can spray them with a fifty fifty mixture of water and vinegar.

Check out the uses of these natural flea remedies at:

August 26, 20110 found this helpful

Do not use frontline. It doesn't work on my dogs and cats and on many other peoples pets. They must have changed something in the formula.

Get one of the other vet topical treatments. Discuss this with the vet. Animals cost money and this is one of the areas not to scrimp on, for their sakes and yours.

Blessings, Robyn

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July 20, 2015

What can I use to get rid of fleas with a newborn baby in the house?

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October 23, 2014

I recently moved in to an apartment that has fleas. I do not have any pets nor do I have carpets, its all hardwood floors. I am currently pregnant and have two small children so I would not like to use chemicals. Please help!

By Jessica

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August 6, 2014

I need a remedy for fleas, with no money to buy anything. My dog has got fleas so bad, that when I gave him a bath he was actually bleeding from being bitten. Please help.


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July 27, 2012

Please help me. My dogs have never had fleas before. I think since the Houston drought and heat last year and heat and rain this year, the fleas are terrible. My whole subdivision is having problems. We are having mosquitoes and fleas. What is the best natural flea killer for pets, home, and yard? Your help is so much appreciated.

By Helen B

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May 19, 2012

For the past few days I have been sitting on my couch picking fleas off my puppy putting them in a cup of water then washing them down the drain. I can't use any of the flea combs because her hair is too short. This is especially true during the summer because she has her summer coat on. I am just wondering if there is a better way to take them off. She is a Chihuahua and too small for any treatments. Any suggestions?

By jonathanha

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December 13, 2016

My German Shepherd dog just had puppies and she has fleas. I would like to know what can I give her so she won't be passing them to the puppies?

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August 11, 2014

How do you get rid of fleas naturally?

By Joyce

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August 27, 2013

How can I safety get rid of fleas in a children's play yard?

By klinghard

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October 22, 2010

How do I get rid of fleas naturally?

By Texas Hard from TN


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October 23, 20100 found this helpful

Food-grade only Diatomaceous Earth. Fleas and tics, all internal parasites will be gone in a few short weeks. Depending on the size of the dog or kitty, sprinkle it right onto their food. From 1 teaspoon to 1 Tablespoons of it every day. Put some in an old sock and dust it all over the fur, being careful not to get it in their eyes and don't let them or you breathe it in too much. It's really great though, and can be used on any age animal. Even nursing mother dogs and cats. It will not hurt the babies but will insure them to be "bug-free" as well. Can be purchased online, and just be absolutely sure it's food grade.


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July 4, 2014

Does anyone have a homemade recipe to get rid of and prevent fleas?

By Patty Hunt

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November 25, 2013

I have 2 indoor cats. I was treating them with Revolution up until a few months a go, I then noticed my youngest male started over grooming. I found it just on the front of his arms.

I started doing research and it was either because he's bored or they where saying it could be fleas. I have never noticed any on him or my other girl and I constantly give him belly rubs, so then I found one on his paw. Now I'm thinking he's allergic to flea bites, so I then started putting a drop or two of apple cider vinegar in their water bowls. I gave them both a bath and then did a rinse with apple cider vinegar and water, half and half. I later found a recipe with acv, water, salt, and baking soda. The only thing is they don't say how often to spray it on them, like once a day, twice a day, once a week?

And I also have been putting salt in the front door carpet, in cracks of couch, chair, bed, their beds, but not directly on their their beds, but under the blanket, under my sheets, in the cracks of furniture and I make sure I rub it in good in carpet. I use a little, but I read a lot about using the salt method and I was just wondering why you are saying it's bad? I understand about them getting it in there eyes, but are there other health reasons not to? I just want to know all the info, I'm just trying to do all my research and if I find or hear something really bad I want to know to stop, but if you or anyone can give me any info on the acv mix question and fill me in more about why the salt method is bad, I would appreciate to hear it.

If anybody has any home remedies for flea bite allergies or if he is over grooming does any one have any ideas for that, and if they are pulling out their hair, is that from the fleas, like the allergy? Please help. Thank you

By Mandy M from Cornwall, Ontario

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February 9, 2017

Salt is a inexpensive way to get rid of fleas in your house. Learn more about using salt to kill fleas in this page.

A woman and her dog on a couch.

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