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Get Rid of Fleas and Ticks with Diatomaceous Earth

September 13th, 2018
Get Rid of Fleas and Ticks with Diatomaceous Earth

​If you are a pet owner, the age-old problem of adult fleas and their eggs, as well as ticks is an inevitable part of your pet ownership. It doesn’t matter how well-groomed you keep your pet. If the conditions allow, fleas will pop right up and hop onto your dog and shortly after finding their way into your home.

However, there are plenty of treatments out there and you may be inundated with lots of varieties. Some of which pose a health hazard to both you and your pet. While yet others only treat the fleas for a couple of days and then you’re right back where you started. Incase you’re having trouble finding the best solution for these horrible fleas and ticks, we have picked out a more natural nontoxic control method to help you get rid of these pesky parasites effectively:diatomaceous earth.

But first things first. Is it really adult fleas, flea eggs, and ticks that are harassing your dog? Dogs scratch all the time. So, it could probably be nothing or just a simplesk in complaint. How can you be sure that it has been infected by fleas and ticks?

To be absolutely sure that your dog has been infected, you have to carefully inspect his coat. While fleas and ticks are to the most part tiny, if you inspect your dog’s coat carefully, you should be able to see them. They are about as big as a rice grain and have laterally flat bodies. And, most of the time, you might notice them jumping around on the dog’s body. But, if you can’t find them, you can follow the poop trace. Flea poop often collects on the dog coat and resembles tiny particles of dirt which you most definitely can’t miss.

Alternatively, you could turn your pooch on its back and inspect areas where fleas are more likely to hide—preferably the groin and underarm areas. Fleas like warm, protected areas. So, if there’s somewhere they’re likely to hide, it’s definitely under the armpits. The ears are also a great place to start. They are after all the first place you notice your dog scratching. If there are signs of blood, redness, or dirt, then your dog is definitely infected.

What Is Diatomaceous Earth?

Diatomaceous-Earth

Diatomaceous earth is a non-toxic substance derived from marine life and crushed fossils of freshwater organisms. Since the diatomaceous powder has a porous and abrasive nature, the bugs ingest it and get severely dehydrated and eventually die. It also contains sharp edges that shred the insides as well as the protective body of the insect.

How Long Does the Action of Diatomaceous Earth Powder Last?

One thing that you need to realize is that the diatomaceous powder might lose it effectiveness if exposed to moisture. This is why you should avoid exposure to rainwater and moisture when treating for parasites. However, even if you manage to keep the powder dry, it is recommended that you should reapply at least every few weeks to kill fleas effectively. Preferably after three weeks as the majority of fleas have a lifecycle of 7 to 21 days.

Dosage

It is recommended that you use one tablespoon of food for bigger dogs that are over 55 pounds and one teaspoon per day for puppies. If you are going to do an external parasite control, you should rub the powder into the dog’s coat and sprinkle some of the powder on the bedding (it is also effective for getting rid of bed bugs too).

​Things to Remember When Using the Diatomaceous Earth Powder for Flea Control

  • ​Vacuum all the areas you want to sprinkle the powder beforehand
  • ​Reapply the powder after every few weeks
  • ​Only use food grade diatomaceous earth powder for organic flea control. It is a little more forgiving and a whole lot safer
  • Ensure that you have gloves on when handling the powder to avoid drying up your hands
  • Wear a dust mask during application to protect your mouth and nose from inhaling the dust. Since it is a fine powder, inhaling it could cause all manner of problems including asthma attacks

​The Benefits of the Diatomaceous Earth Powder

There are several benefits of using the diatomaceous earth powder to get rid of ticks and fleas:

  • ​It is non-toxic and therefore safe for both the pet owner and the pet
  • ​It is readily available at gardening supply stores
  • ​It can be applied directly to the dog’s coat
  • It can be used as a de-wormer
  • It can treat mites, lice, fleas,and ticks on dogs, cats, birds, and livestock such as horses, rabbits, pigs, cows, and sheep
  • It has a mechanical action; therefore, unlike with chemical-based treatments, there's no chance that the parasites will build up immunity against it

Side Effects of Diatomaceous Earth Powder

The diatomaceous earth powder though vastly beneficial comes with one downside and it is only wise you are informed about it beforehand.

  • ​It kills all types of insects including beneficial insects such as bees. So, if you are a beekeeper or like to harvest a little honey from time to time, you have to make sure you apply the powder carefully so as not to harm other beneficial insects.

​Wrapping Up

Killing fleas as well as flea eggs effectively from your pooch is never an easy affair. You could try all sorts of treatments and still wound up at the very same place you started. But with the diatomaceous earth powder, you can never go wrong. It not only destroys the fleas and ticks from the inside out but it also has a mechanical action which makes it harder for parasites to build up resistance. So, there’s no chance that they will become immune.