Homemade Flea & Tick Remedy

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“Our Baby Isis”

Homemade Flea & Tick Remedy

Do you have cats or dogs? If you answered yes, then you know all to well the nuisance of fleas and ticks. We have 2 cats inside and the thought of having fleas or ticks make me shudder. Then, there’s the thought of using chemicals on my animals and around my kids that I absolutely do not like to do. How about a homemade solution to getting rid of fleas and ticks that is safe and you probably have most of the ingredients right now in your home? Here is a homemade flea and tick remedy that can help your furry babies stay itch proof and safe this season without all those nasty chemicals.

8 oz apple cider vinegar
4 oz warm water
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda


-Mix dry ingredients first then slowly add to wet as the vinegar and baking soda will react slightly.

-Put into spray bottle and spray pets down. Be careful not to get in pets eyes.

-Use Borax throughout the house, sprinkle it on the carpets and let sit for a few hours, then vacuum.

This should kill all the fleas and ticks in your home and on your pets. You can retreat as you see the need.

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Cyndee is a mom of 3, one with Autism as his Super Power, trying to make her way through college and life with MS and without getting multiple restraining orders...Living in Mt. Airy, N.C and married to her best friend and side-kick Jack, aka Not-So-Rude-Dad.....Welcome to our craziness.
  • Karen Glatt

    I really like this Homemade Flea and Tick remedy. It is cheaper and much better to use than putting on chemicals. Thanks so much for this great post!

    • rudemom75

      Your welcome lady…I like to use homemade things to instead of all those chemicals

      • Guest

        How often do you have to reapple?

      • http://www.facebook.com/mbella77 Michele Clarke

        How often do you have to reapply?

        • rudemom75

          I usually reapply every other week until they are all gone

  • April Wray

    Love this! I also put a little apple cider vinegar in my dogs drinking water.

    • rudemom75

      I have tried that with my cats and they give me that look like…Really mom you soured our water…PFTTT. LOL, they are too picky for it, but I have heard it works awesome with dogs April :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=543676921 April Crisafulli

    This is a constant prob with my 2 dogs, def want to try!

    • rudemom75

      With our cats it seems time it heats up they get fleas…our son is allergic to them and a whole lot of other things, so finding a natural remedy was very necessary. Hope this helps you and your furbabies April :)

  • Cindy Brickley

    My husband is a tick magnet and the dog gets ticks and fleas, also. We live around a lot of deer and have a problem with deer ticks that carry Lyme’s disease. We have been wanting a home remedy for this problem and I thank you for posting. I will be making this as soon as I am done commenting.

    • rudemom75

      Cindy, let me know how you liked it once you treat your furbabies :)

      • Cindy Brickley

        I made it right after my post and so far 5 days later no ticks or fleas. thank you again for posting.

        • rudemom75

          That is awesome to hear Cindy, so glad it worked for you! Thank you for letting me know it worked :)

    • smgraham

      Lyme can be contracted by mostiqoes and fleas as well. I know because I contracted Lyme Disease from a mostiqoe bit. I was sick for 2+ years before finding a doctor who knew what had happened! It isn’t fun and I treat naturally for the lyme and got completely over it!

  • http://twitter.com/PeggySueGreco Peggy Sue Greco

    I like the safe ingredients for dogs/cats in this remedy. thanks for sharing with us.

    • rudemom75

      Me too, I always thought if we won’t use it on our skin why on earth put it on our animals skin?

  • Dawn S.

    I’m definitely going to need to try this, I hate putting chemicals on my puppy

    • rudemom75

      Me too Dawn, and especially when you see them licking it, I always freaked out when they did that with the chemicals

  • Cheryl Rahkonen

    I knew to use vinegar for ticks and fleas but I have not tried it with baking soda. That would help get rid of that wet dog smell. I did not know about the borax in the house – I certainly will try this. I have used sevin dust but I don’t use it when there are small children in the house and still I had reservations about using it. Thanks for this article – tomorrow I will gather my ingredients and then wager war against those nasty little pests.

    • rudemom75

      Your welcome Cheryl, I actual keep borax in the house because we make our own laundry detergent…we save tons on just that each year :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/nicole.becker.378 Nicole Becker

    My dog has never had fleas but my Aunt’s dog seems to get them all of the time. So, I will be letting her know this information. Thanks so much.

    • rudemom75

      Your welcome Nicole :)

  • lisa

    That sounds much better than using all of those chemicals. With cats, at least mine, it’s hard to apply any flea treatment.

    • rudemom75

      I have cats and what I do is put some on my hands on rub them like I am petting them, that way a spray from a spray bottle doesn’t scare them and make the claws come out. It helps to have someone help if the are the type who doesn’t like too much contact.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1775671139 Pamela Halligan

    I have three dogs and a cat. I’d much rather use a natural remedy instead of harsh chemicals. Thanks so much for this post.

  • Shannon

    Ok so Dumb question…. on the Borax…. Is it the Borax Acid that you use or the boxed one in the household cleaners area? Can my pets walk around with it there or do I need to put them in a different room? I as well have kids with different medical needs to look at. Single mom of 4 girls, one has Autism,ODD,Bulimia and Aspergers… One is Gifted and has Super hard Migrianes, one has Bladder issues can’t have any dye at all, ADD/ADHD and Aspergers my last lil one was born early and gets sick easy Gifted and Fleas love her. I was bad I used everything out there and nothing works. We have super Fleas here lol Trying this tonight wish me luck!!! Oh and I shared it with lots of others…

    • rudemom75

      Shannon, no question is a dumb one honey…It is clearly up to you how you would like to do that. I spread the Borax down in one room at a time, making sure my kids and pets don’t go in there for a few hours, then vacuum that room and move on to the next. It is the same Borax that you would use to make homemade laundry soap also. I hope that helps you out. :)

  • Jo

    I assume table salt?

  • Martha

    I have two very large dogs they are about 180 to almost 200 lbs., is this also something that I can use with them? And they like to be outside a lot especially if we go somewhere for a while and at night now that it is cool at night, how often should I reapply this on them? We have tried the chemical stuff and they love to roll around in the dirt and the minute that they get dirty give them a bath and that stuff washes off it is just a big waste of money too. Thanks so much for this, it will save us a lot of money!!

    • Martha

      Also, I forgot to ask this, can we apply this right after their bath or should we wait until they dry off? Thanks again!!

    • DarkWinds

      Sometimes it is necessary to use things like Frontline. Do not use the cheaper brands as they can cause skin issues. But dogs outside a lot would need daily baths otherwise.

  • patty

    how does it affect the cats when licking it off? Will it make them sick?

  • Randi

    After you spray it on the dogs, do you rinse them or just leave it on? Will the Borax kill what is in the carpet? I am trying to find a safe alternative, I have a little baby crawling around.

    • Laury

      Ground salt is a much safer alternative. I have a 10 month old so I can understand your concern. You can ground up the salt in a blender, you’ll just have to put a good amount in there so it’ll take and use the “liquefy” setting if it applies to your blender/food processor.

    • Catitude

      You can also use geranium oil as a flea and tick remedy. Just a couple drops under their collar and everything is great. I have a 2 year old and I won’t use any of the chemicals. I’ve done the ground salt on the carpet and it does work well.

    • Anita

      I was wondering the same thing…do you give them a bath after a day? Do you use the whole spray bottle?

  • Carol

    Thank you! I too try to stay away from chemicals. I have had schnauzers for 30 years and for the first time we have fleas. Ugh! My fur babies sleep in my bed so I am going to treat my mattress as well. What is the ratio for vinegar to water for pets to drink? Thanks a million and have a great day!

  • Danielle

    This did not work!! In all my adult life I never had to worry about fleas, then my poor Yorkie gets them visiting another dog. I’ve tried the stuff you put on their neck, flea shampoo and now this. I’ve treated everything, and she still has the fleas. I treated her twice with this stuff, the second time I drenched her in it.

    • Brandi Lynn Wiatrowski

      Try washing Ur dog in dawn brand dish soap

    • Veni L. Ellis

      wash with dawn dish soap first then put the mixture on. i also sprayed the carpet with the mixture after using borox. works like a charm.

    • Molly King

      My friend used this mix and it did kill all her fleas. She said she treated them so much that they were basically damp for three straight days. It’s a minor annoyance to continually treat for a few days, but it sure beats the alternative of 1000 fleas. Washing with dish soap works as well. If need be, combine methods. I run an animal foster home so I have to deal with this issue A LOT

  • jeri

    Thank u I am trying this my male yorkie has sensitive skin n so imooking to help wv the fleas but not hurt them so I will let u kw

  • Brandi Lynn Wiatrowski

    I hve hard wood floors and not sure how to go about it with an almost 2 year old. Please help I wanna use the borax

    • Molly King

      Salt is a safer alternative. If you sprinkle it in the cracks and around the baseboards of the floors, it is just as effective. The sharp edges on the salt and borax granules serve to slice the exoskeleton on the fleas and it dehydrates them. You can leave it on overnight then sweep/vacuum the next morning

  • Jeannie

    Can you use regular vinegar or does it have to be apple cider vinegar?

  • Ilovecorgis

    Does this drive ticks and fleas away or does it just kill them? Because I shutter at the thought of picking ticks off my pets >~<

  • Sophie

    After you spray it on the dog, do you rinse it off or leave it?

  • Concerned parent/grandparent

    Hey Cyndee – how about “the thought of having fleas or ticks make me SHUDDER” (not “shutter”). Raising 3 kids and not being able to spell makes me “shudder”. Support literacy.

  • JA Mertes

    Does it kill the fleas? I have cats and the flea powder has been a losing battle especially since I have one that runs when he sees the can of powder.

  • Wade

    Greetings and Salutations! Your remedy is the first one that came up on my search, so am going to the grocery to buy the ingredients. We really hope this works, as our budget is very tight and this is a relatively CHEAP alternative. Plus, I’m not wild about chemicals…Did you also know that borax has helped up with ants! We sprinkle it in windowsills and a bit anywhere we see the ants. I’d just watch it around food prep areas. You may want to pass this along!

  • Manners101

    Heaven forbid you ever make any mistake in your life. Do you go up to people in wheel chairs and dance in their face too?

  • Jennifer N Reukauf

    I am thinking about making this stuff too. Using the plain dawn dishsoap kills the darn things but we have one that makes the great escape often. The fleas are bad this summer because it has been a weird and mild summer. I really hope it works. Thanks for posting it. I would rather not use the chemicals on the “kids”. We have 3 and they are just as demanding are my human kids..lol

  • Another Guest

    Cyndee – I’m sure you’re a hard-working, great mom. As far as Guest and her comments, she needs to get a life and leave her comments to herself. Go sit in a room and “shudder” over the fact that you’re a complete ass.

    • Guest2

      Mean’t to say that “she’s” a complete ass!

  • Christine Sullivan

    i have 6 dogs and fleas are crazy. the problem is i have hardwood floors how do i treat the floor

    • DarkWinds

      All you can do is mop, Use of Murphy s oil soap will keep the wood healthy, and vinegar would destroy it. Try some lemon and orange rind boiled in water for 20 min to cook it down. The water remaining should not damage the wood and as fleas do not like lemon or orange it should help. e sure to get under fur furniture and clean the furniture too. Also use a sponge to get it into corners and be sure you get along the walls.

  • gannyofshy

    How cool is this idea, I cannot afford the expensive flea stuff, this is a great idea, thank you so very muc

  • Laurel A. Rockefeller

    I’m actually a COCKATOO person, but assaulted by an infestation either through my neighbors or some fleas grabbing a ride on me when I took my one and only golf outing for labor day. Very allergic to bugs. Can I put this spray on ME? I normally wash my hair with baking soda, then vinegar, so I know that is safe. But I’m desperate to get rid of these things. Feels like everything I do makes it worse. and yes, I’m trying everything. But I’m blind and live in a rural area where there is no laundrymat and I cannot afford a washer of my own. I have to wash in a bucket and line dry in my shoulder. I am so personally eaten alive, my bird won’t come near me! It’s that bad in just a week of vacuuming, washing, even getting Orkin to come out.

  • Alexis

    I,m getting ready to go try this. My poor dog has fleas sooooo bad he is constantly scratching and biting. He just recently started whining while biting at them. I hope this works! Wish me luck ;)

  • Mary

    O leave her alone miss high n mighty it’s not a grammar contest it is adults trying to help other cinder WE Have to forgive ignorant people they just like to nit pick in this case flea pick Hope you get bitten tonight MISS PERFECT

  • lisa

    I wish I had this a few years ago! My cat got out one time for all of 5 minutes and the flea circus began. It took forever to get rid of those things.

  • Lady Vampire

    This is great! We have dogs in the family and I hate using pills and chemicals. And I love the borax idea. I need to tell that one to my aunt as she is suffering from fleas in her carpeting lately. Thank you!

  • John Lamano

    is that a rock salt? and can i use regular vinegar?

  • fuckyou

    mo fo die bitch i hope you do and you sun

    • joe

      What is wrong with you why don’t you ok just stop

  • Jan

    My daughter and I rescued numerous cats and dogs over the years. We were able to adopt all but 5 of the cats. Those had severe problems. We found out that our cats were allergic to the monthly flea treatments and have serious adverse reactions. In fact, one died as a result of the third treatment of Advantage, after trying Frontline and having reactions. My cats hate the water and literally claw me to shreds when I try to bathe them. I take Coumadin and cannot take the risk. I have stopped using Frontline and Advantage and have tried rubbing their fur with single applications of lemon juice, or hydrogen peroxide, or apple cider vinegar. They would never let me rub in entirely into their fur, as they will claw me, but I get some one them. Then they lick themselves. One cat had an adverse reaction to apple cider vinegar. I have taken them to the vet and he recommended putting them on birth control for the fleas. It would not kill the fleas only keep the fleas from reproducing. This has worked to a degree, but the fleas still exist. Do you know of a way to hold the cats down so I can properly apply the mixture and rub it into their coats. I have tried a cat harness that one can attach a leash to, but it only included the front feet and they fought me on the back feet. Because I have seen the reaction of the fleas when I tried the single applications, then I believe this combination will work, except for one cat, where I will leave out the vinegar. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Deb W.

      I have the same problem with my cats, but there is hope!! Take him/her by their scruff and hold tight, this will allow you to stand them up to get their stomach’s. You can also do their back and sides by laying them on either side. As long as you hold their scruff tight, you wont get scratched!! Make sure while spraying, the kitty is on a hard surface that they can’t get their nails into. This helps with them to not be able to dig their nails in. If they can get their nails into a surface, they’ll grab it and this allows them to make a run for it. I’ve been doing it this way for many years and have never gotten scratched. Good Luck!!

  • Rebecca Migliore

    Thanks for the recipe! Sounds super easy!

  • Valerie Rhodes

    Great information here .. thanks for those with the ideas.. it can be a pain some years.

  • carolyn

    do you have to totally saturate them in the mixture or just wipe it thru wow it smells bad lol

  • Sierra

    do you need apple cider vinegar

  • Kandinsky

    Do I leave it on after I spray my puppies or rinse it off? And does it kill the fleas and ticks or repels it?

  • Chris

    How long will the spray last. I assume you need to reapply after bathing.

  • Katherine Jochumsen

    Just sprayed it on my cats after finding a flea on one of them earlier today. I gave them a bath as well… I’m really hoping this works as this is the first time either of them have had fleas and I’m on a tight budget. :)

  • maricela

    i made a vinegar flea spray like a week ago. it was 1 part white vinegar and 1 part water. my problem is my as soon as quick as i spray it on and rub it in to make sure it gets to his skin my pitbull he licks it right off. my question is with him lickin it up im sure he doesnt get all of it but is it even worth putting on? is it even going to work since he licks part of it up? or is their something i can add that maybe will keep him from licking it up cuz maybe he wont like ho it tastes?

    • jean

      try adding garlic oil or crushed garlic. may not smell so good but works. my cats mostly stay outside but my min pin stays inside. i’ve had no prob.

  • maricela

    or maybe is their another kind a homemade kind a spray someone might know i can try?

  • Debbie

    Thank you so much for your recipe for flea spray, both of our babies were recently infested by a visiting puppy that was loaded. Of course I tried everything that I could find that was not over my budget. I made this mixture and sprayed our boxer and minpin til they were slightly wet. I like the fact that it is non toxic made from ingredients that were readily available in my home. AND MOST IMPORTANTLY IT WORKS!!! Thank you so much!

  • Anna Marsh Mambourg

    Wondering will the vinegar smell go away? Am I supposed to bathe her afterwards or just let it stay on her

  • Christina K.

    I just love apple cider vinegar, it cures so many things. Thanks for sharing this.

  • Abby

    can i use white spirit vinegar or must it be apple cider?

  • Anne

    Can you use on lactating cats. She had kittens yesterday just notice a flea on her. So where there is one therefore heaps more

  • Crystal

    I need help I have a son that is literally being eaten up from flea’s. I have tried vacuuming up my house and applying salt and baking soda all over the floor for 12 hours then vacuuming it up I also have applied various topical creams and bug repellents but nothing is working I need something to kill them off my carpet and furniture!!!!! please help!!!!!!

  • Angie Fiack

    Thanks for the flea spray recipe. I’m going to try it.

  • Melissa S

    I am going to give this a try, we have a 6 month old Chihuahua that is barely 2 pounds. The thought of the chemical treatments worry me because she is just so tiny,

  • tyson

    how often do you have to apply? i have a 95lb pit

  • zimah DHA

    after u spray to the pet, just leave it on??

  • Angelwings2

    I just wanted to offer a few more suggestions. . . .as these are things we have had to do to get rid of a major flea epidemic. . .

    Homemade flea shampoo-
    1/2 C castle soap
    1/4 c warm water
    1/2 tsp Lavender essential oil
    1 tsp cedarwood oil
    — Mix well & put into bottle. Use as normal shampoo, leaving on pet for 5 minutes before rinsing.


    – Put into spray bottle–
    1 Tablespoon Each- Lavender, Cedarwood, lemongrass, orange, citronella, eucalyptus essential oils.
    ADD 1/2 rubbing alcohol. Shake well before & during use.
    (Spray pet & bedding area)
    Caution: May stain some materials.

    Use the above spray, adding 1/2 c warm water. Spray carpets & pet bedding. This will deter any fleas from settling into your carpet. Caution: May stain some materials. . . .

    – I used this spray around the cuffs of my socks (stained them), no fleas on my while vacuuming, though
    –I also sprayed myself lightly before working outside & no gnats, no-seeums, or mosquitos!

    Diatomaceous Earth — This is a powdered form of fossilized crustations.
    It has microscopic crystals that slice & dice the exoskeleton of fleas, & roaches.
    — Use as a Dusting powder for your pets, carpets, entry ways, etc.

    Use as often as necessary, Reapply after bathing (make sure pet is dry.), and if using outside- reapply after rain.

    – It will Not harm your pets, it will not harm humans (unless the powder or dust is inhaled). . . . You can use 1/2 teaspoon in your pets food to help with intestinal parasites, and worms. Humans can also consume this at 1/2-1 tsp in a glass of water or juice, to clear any intestinal parasites, and helps to rid some cholesterol from the body before it settles, if used on a daily basis.

    Vacuum EVERYDAY!!

    We went thru a regimen where we sprayed the carpets in the morning and vacuumed every evening. . . it took about 2 weeks oo, and they fleas were pretty much gone

    – You will need-
    flat containers to hold about 1 inch of water.
    any liquid dish soap (not lavender scented)
    a nightlight with a blue or yellow bulb preferred, (white will work too)

    –ADD about 1/2 inch water to the container.
    - add a few drops of dish soap, mix carefully, so as not to make any bubbles.
    Plug in night light near the floor. . . Place container about 1 foot from night light.

    – note: If you place a piece of white paper in the bottom of the container, you will be able to see the fleas better.
    — How it works: The fleas are attracted to the light. They jump at the light & fall into the container & drown. . . If there are any bubbles in the container, the fleas will bounce off them! LOL
    —Check every morning & replace water/soap as necessary ( I usually changed the water every 2 or 3 days. If you vacuum everyday, you will see less & less fleas in the container


    For salt– I recommend using Dead Sea Salt.. there are more minerals in it to dehydrate the fleas better than table salt. . .

    — I used a coffee grinder to powder the salt and Borax.

    Personally, I prefer Not to use borax in the carpets, as it tends to clog up the filters in my vacuum. . . I only use Diatomaceous Earth near my doorways, and on my pets, and in my garden.

    You can use The vinegar spray on a daily basis, and YES… you leave it on your pet… DO NOT rinse off. . . Borax & Salt will eventually kill what’s in your carpet.

    I found that Vinegar is more of a deterrent, than an actual killer. . . it will however, “pickle” the flea eggs and larva.

    Well there you have my expertise on flea control!

    Have a great Flea-free Day!

    • tre

      essential oils are toxic to pets

  • a dog lover

    How do you get the spray to work?????? I’v tryed three different spray bottlers and they don’t work after 3 or 4 sprays. How do you get it on the dog and on the carpet ???????????????????????

  • Chris

    How long does spray mix last ? 30 days more less ? Obviously after baths

  • brecca

    Do you carefully spray the cats face? I guess it’s safe for her to lick?