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Hi all

I have a Belgian shepherd that has many fleas.

I'm afraid to use any collar / shampoo / medicine as a treatment since I'm not a big fan of chemicals on my dog. For me it's like poisoning my own dog.

I also have to mention that even if I wanted to get those chemicals, it's soooo expensive. I can't believe people actually buy those products.

I found some article about home remedies for fleas on dogs.
Did anyone have experience with the methods mentioned there?

Do u think adding white vinegar to the water bowl could cause any damage?

I'm really desperate and I want to find a solution to this problem.

Thanks!
 

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Natural remedies are garbage for fleas and ticks. If you're desperate for a solution and serious about getting rid of the fleas, use a topical medication like Frontline or Advantix. While you're at it, I'd also advise a capstar treatment as well. Yup, people buy this stuff because it works and fleas are nasty buggers. It's a necessary expense to owning a dog. You'll spend more money trying to find something natural that actually works and then will have to go with chemicals anyway.

To rid fleas from your environment, buy a crappy flea collar, put it in your vacuum canister and vacuum like crazy for the next few days. Throw any bedding your dog has slept on in the wash. Bleach hard-surfaces. This is important because otherwise you'll always have a problem of reinfestation.

Do not wait to try to treat this naturally. Not going to work.

My also want to head to the vet for a dewormer for tapeworms since they can be transmitted to your dog from the fleas too. Yup, more chemicals. But better than tapeworms.

I would not be adding vinegar to the water. Doubtful the dog will drink it and If he Does, you'll just accomplish making your dog smell like a salad.

Sorry it's not the answer you want, but it's the answer that's going to solve your problem-- and that should be the goal.
 

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I read the article you posted and even it says the remedies are more for prevention. I personally do not agree natural remedies are useless, as I use essential oils as a repellent for my dogs. But if dealing with a existing infestation that your describing, I would go with chemical warfare to deal with them. Oils may kill fleas and ticks, but it's more like find a flea/tick cover them in a drop and they die, not mist a thin layer and they'll die on contact.

From the article:
Eucalyptus Plants: unless your willing to let your dog chew on it or roll around over it, the oils that repel fleas won't benefit your dog as a potted plant. Even then it doesn't kill just repels.
Spice up drinking water: I would also cross off the vinegar thing unless your willing to live with the fleas for the next 3 months minimum waiting to see if it works, most the time it doesn't, dogs aren't likely to want to drink vinegar water.
Lemons: This is active solution you still need to comb out every single flea in order to kill it, and a bucket of hot soapy water works too. This is also the best of the non-chemical solutions to use for current infestation on dog
Vinegar Flea Spray: will need to apply every 1-2 hours depending on how long the scent lasts. It doesn't kill just repels maybe, vinegar is not good repellent even at full strength.
Natural Flea Collar: similar to the vinegar just more expensive, and again will need to be redone regularly, as the scent with fade quickly and will not cover the entire dog just the immediate neck area. It doesn't kill just repels.
Water: Basically a doggy bath, this will work but you'll still need to comb out the fleas by hand.

As for non-chemical remedies that do work in relation to cost against chemical warfare:
Treating your home -
Diatomaceous Earth (food grade) 4lbs $15-35 vs Holly's flea collar and vacuum method $3-7 if you buy a small collar it just needs to big enough to fit in the vacuum bag, not your dog. Heck get a clearance sale cat collar since petstores charge about 15% more for dog supplies over cat stuff if you want.

Flea repellent for the dog 1 month -
1 ml essential oil (about enough to fill a soda bottle's cap to the first thread) $11 vs Heartguard for 60-100lb dog tablet ~$8

There isn't that big a saving when comparing chemical remedies to natural, and natural can cost more down the line. I choose a natural method for my dogs, but I don't save money, as it costs the same as using a chemical method, and I may even pay more as I have my dogs tested every 6 months instead of the once yearly Vet exam most people have for their dogs. I also live in a area with low flea and tick populations (I've only encountered 1 tick in +20 years living here, and that might have even been a weevil instead), so this solution works for me.
 

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I agree with Holly and Terrin Lake. Since you have an existing flea infestation go with the topical flea treatment, it'll be fast and effective and hopefully after 2 months you won't have any fleas and can then discontinue it and try to go with a natural method.

I've dealt with flea infestations in the past and I can tell you from experience even supposedly good flea and tick shampoos do very, very, little to get rid of the fleas, at one point I was using a shampoo that was supposed to kill the fleas for 2 weeks after application. I followed the directions exactly, there was no fleas on my dog at the end of the bath, 3 days later it was like I hadn't even used the shampoo, all the fleas were back and I think they invited some of their friends and relatives, I swear I heard them laughing at me.

Follow Holly's directions with the vacuuming, it it can be vacuumed vacuum it, and make sure to vacuum the furniture, along the baseboards, and in cracks and crevices. You may want to use a flea powder or spray on the upholstery and floors once at least once a week for a month, vacuum at least every other day for a month to get the fleas as they hatch.

Once the fleas are gone you can try the natural methods to keep them from coming back. I've hard good things about Diatomaceous Earth (food grade), make sure it's food grade and not pool grade. You can use it in the yard and in your home, it kills insects but is pretty safe to use around animals.
 

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I would not have diatomaceous earth anywhere near where animals sniff. Inhaling can cause lung issues (since it works by being very sharp and cutting up exoskeletons)
 
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