Fun Fact: there are more than 2,500 different species of fleas. Crazy, right? Fleas are those tiny, annoying insects that live off the blood of their animal hosts; parasites; un-welcomed guests. 

When they attack your best furry friend, they burrow next to the skin, dig in and suck out your pet’s blood. The worst part isn’t even that they are causing serious discomfort, it’s that fleas reproduce at an insanely fast rate, and leap huge distances onto other hosts. For dog and cat owners, this can be extremely frustrating and disheartening, even more so because they can even spread the disease to humans. 

The last thing we want is our pet and our homes to be infested with fleas. And the second to last thing that we want is to use some synthetic poison to get rid of them. Why? Well, because flea bombs and drops are toxic. They can adversely affect your health, your family’s health, and your pet’s health! 

Chemicals on your skin and in your lungs are a big no-no. Especially when there are natural and effective treatment options. Fleas won’t build up an immunity to essential oils, only conventional “solutions”. This is why we’re offering you a step by step guide on how to get rid of fleas the all-natural way. 

Essential oils are affordable, all-natural, and effective flea treatment alternatives. In this article, we’ll learn about the best essential oils for fleas, how to use them, and killer DIY recipes. 

Why Use Essential Oils for Fleas 

When fleas bite your cat or dog, its painful and itchy. You may find your affected dog or cat scratching themselves to high heavens because of the uncontrollable itchiness. This results in red welts that can cause secondary infections, especially if your pet keeps scratching. Now your bet may have blisters, rashes, and hives near the bites. 

Most people turn to pesticides to annihilate fleas but turning towards synthetic toxins is dangerous for your pet’s skin and even worse for those secondary infections. That’s why using essential oils for fleas are your best option. 

The essential oils I’m going to be talking about today are natural insecticides and have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, analgesic, and antiparasitic properties– making them king at getting rid of fleas, healing secondary infections, and comforting your pet. 

10 of the Best Essential Oils for Fleas 

When using essential oils for fleas it’s important to remember to only use high-quality and pure essential oils. Using a cheap essential oil filled with synthetics will be toxic to your pet. 

Lemongrass Essential Oil 

Main Constituents: 
  • Geranial 
  • Neral
  • Geranial
  • Farnesol
Top Properties:
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antimicrobial
  • Analgesic
  • Anti-mutagenic
  • regenerative

Lemongrass is a fantastic choice of essential oils for fleas. Not only is the aroma of lemongrass extremely unpleasant for fleas, the oil acts as a natural insect repellent. 

While it won’t kill the fleas, the aroma will encourage the fleas to leave your pet and your home. Mixing lemongrass essential oil with water in a spray bottle and spraying on your pet’s bedding will help repel and keep fleas away. 

Another way to use lemongrass essential oil for fleas is by diffusing it. While fleas hate the aroma, we love it! If you want to use lemongrass topically on your pet make sure to dilute with a carrier oil like fractionated coconut oil and gently spray or massage your pet with the oil. Option to bathe them afterward. 

Cedarwood Essential Oil 

This oil does more than repel fleas, it kills them! Cedarwood is one of the best oils for getting rid of fleas for good. It’s important to only use cedarwood in the diluted form when using it to kill fleas. 

When using on your pet dilute a few drops with a carrier oil and gently massage onto skin. 

Peppermint Essential Oil 

Main Constituents:
  • Menthol
  • Menthone
  • a-pinenes
  • b- Pinenes 
  • Menthyl acetate
Top Properties:
  • Anti-inflammatory 
  • Analgesic
  • Antispasmodic
  • Warming
  • Cooling
  • Stimulating

While peppermint oil isn’t considered a super-effective essential oil for fleas, it is amazing for the inflammation and irritation that comes with flea bites. Using peppermint essential oil will help speed up the healing process by increasing blood flow and providing some relief. 

Important note: while it’s great to mix into a spray or diluted and then massaged onto your pet’s skin, peppermint essential oil is not for all animals. Only use on large dogs and avoid topical use on cats and small dogs. 

If your bets irritation is your biggest concern, lavender essential oil is great for soothing pain and reducing stress that comes with annoying pests. 

Lavender Essential Oil

Main Constituents:
  • Linalool
  • A-terpineol
  • Linalyl Acetate 
  • B-ocimene
Top Properties:
  • Sedative 
  • Astringent 
  • Antihistamine
  • Antispasmodic
  • Analgesic
  • Relaxing
  • Soothing
  • Antibacterial
  • Regenerative

Lavender is an incredible essential oil for so many reasons, in this article’s case, lavender essential oil works wonders to soothe itchy flea bites. Lavender will also work hard to repel fleas. Consider planting lavender around your house to help repel fleas before they get too attached.

To use lavender essential oil for fleas, you can diffuse or dilute and apply to your pet’s skin. 

Rosemary Essential Oil

Main Constituents:
  • Linalool
  • Terpinen-4-ol 
  • I,8-cineole 
Top Properties:
  • Analgesic
  • Stimulant 

Rosemary fosters an uncomfortable environment for fleas to reside in, encouraging them to get out and stay out. Rosemary has fantastic healing properties and active ingredients perfect for your soothing your dog. Do not use rosemary essential oil on your cat though, as it may be toxic. 

Give your dog a bath and put 5-8 drops while scrubbing your pet gently with water. Not only will this help eliminate the infestation it will also help prevent secondary infections.  

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Main Constituents:
  • Eucalyptol
  • Alpha-terpineol
Top Properties:
  • Antiviral 
  • Antibacterial
  • Analgesic
  • Insecticidal
  • Disinfectant

Fleas really hate eucalyptus’ aroma. Add some drops of eucalyptus to a spray bottle and go to town over floors, couches, clothes, and bedding to keep fleas away. If you want to use on your pet, I recommend only spray an extremely diluted water mixture on your dog.  

Cardamom Essential Oil 

Main Constituents:
  • Terpinyl Acetate
  • L,8-cineole
  • Linalool
Top Properties:
  • Antispasmodic
  • Anti-inflammatory

Cardamom essential oil has natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which make it perfect for protecting your furry friend and family members from secondary infections caused by flea bites. Cardamom is a soothing essential oil for fleas as well, so kiss discomfort and pain goodbye. 

Dilute cardamom with a carrier oil like fractionated coconut oil and massage onto your pet’s body where he or she is experiencing extreme discomfort, itchiness, and pain. This is the same recipe for humans as well (: 

Lemon Essential Oil 

Main Constituents:
  • D-limonene
  • Alpha-pinenes
  • Beta-pinenes
Top Properties:
  • Antiseptic
  • Antibacterial
  • Disinfectant
  • Astringent

Ideal for cats and dogs, lemon essential oil is a popular insect repellent known to keep fleas far from home and your pet. All you have to do is drop a few drops of lemon oil on your animals bedding or around your home. Not only will lemon essential oil get rid of fleas, but it can also act as a preventative measure. 

Helichrysum Essential Oil 

Main Constituents:
  • Neryl acetate
  • Italidone
  • Y-curcumene 
  • L-limonene
Top Properties:
  • Antispasmodic
  • Analgesic 

Helichrysum essential oil for fleas is a great idea due to its analgesic properties. When you want to boost the healing process, relieve pain, and moisturize irritated areas on your pets skin, dilute 5-6 drops with a carrier oil and then apply to inflamed areas. That and it will make your house smell fresh and clean while also boosting mood naturally. You really can’t beat that. 

Pennyroyal Essential Oil

Main Constituents:
  • Pulegone
  • Menthone
  • Iso-menthone
  • Neomenthone
Top Properties:
  • Antimicrobial
  • Antioxidant 

Pennyroyal Oil is a popular insect-repellent essential oil that is extremely preventive. Because it can be highly irritating to skin and potentially toxic to pets, only sprinkle or spray around your home but do not apply to the skin or fur of your pet.

How to Use Essential Oils for Fleas 

  • Dilute oils that you will topically apply to your pets with a carrier oil like fractionated coconut oil, jojoba oil, or grapeseed oil. 
  • Dip pet brush into water with a couple of drops of essential oil and brush through fur 
  • Add a couple drops into a spray bottle with water or apple cider vinegar, shake and spray on bedding and around home 
  • Diffuse essential oils to repel fleas
  • Use 1-2 drops while giving your pet a bath 
  • Create a flea collar repellant with the DIY recipe below 

Flea Collar Repellent 

Ingredients:
  • ½ teaspoon rubbing alcohol 
  • 4 garlic oil capsule 
  • 1 drop each of cedarwood,  lavender, lemon,  and thyme essential oil 
Instructions: 
  • Mix in a medium bowl
  • Soak collar in mixture for 25-30 minutes 
  • Lay out to dry 
  • Place on pet’s neck 
  • Repeat once or twice a month 

 A Word of Caution When Using Essential Oils for Fleas 

Essential oils are highly potent natural remedies and must always be used with caution. Using too much can be toxic to both humans and pets. Always consult with a holistic vet familiar with essential oils before using on your animal. And always, always** make sure that you are using high-quality, medical-grade essential oils when treating animals. 

Summary 

Essential oils are an all-natural, effective, and economical alternative to toxic, conventional remedies. The best essential oils to repel and kill fleas are lemongrass, cardamom, cedarwood, pennyroyal, helichrysum, rosemary, peppermint, lemon, eucalyptus, and lavender. Always remember to consult with your vet or a vet who has experience with essential oils before using essential oils for fleas on your pets. If you are purchasing essential oils for your first time, look for high-quality and pure companies who don’t use synthetic fragrances, fillers, or anything that is not the plant species! If using topically, always dilute, and never over do it. Essential oils are potent, and it only takes a couple drops to do the job! And always remember to breath. Fleas are the worst, but with a little help from essential oils you can get through it easily and quickly! 

Have you ever used essential oils to kill or repel fleas?! What was your experience with them? I would love to chat, drop a comment below and let me know! 

Cites 

  1. https://www.organicfacts.net/essential-oils-fleas.html
  2. https://thefreerangelife.com/essential-oils-for-fleas/
  3. The Essential Life: a Simple Guide to Living the Wellness Lifestyle. Total Wellness Publishing, 2017.

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