Date: Wed, 1 Mar 1995 13:00:27 -0500
Sender: Medicinal and Aromatic Plants discussion list <HERB.TREARN.BITNET>
From: IVELISSE Fundora <ivelisse.ALPHA.ACAST.NOVA.EDU>
Subject: flea control

Does anyone know of any herbs that help combat fleas. I found a flea in my dog the other day and would like to cure this anoying problem the natural way. I read a long time back that there are herbs you can use for this, but when I went on my search trying to find out were I had read this I could not find anything. People have also told me that giving my dog garlic will help, but is there anything else?

From: Valerie Sadovsky <vsadovsk.DE.CTC.EDU>

> Does anyone know of any herbs that help combat fleas. I found a flea in

The best flea control is to comb your dog with a flea comb every day. Also, I was giving my dog brewers yeast. Brewers yest - flea comb combination eliminated our flea problem. If you decide to go with brewers yeast, make sure your dog is not allergic to it. Fleas don't like Pennyroyal smell. I made a tincture from it and when we go out, I sprinkle my dog with a very diluted one.


From: "FRED W. BACH , TRIUMF Operations" <music.ERICH.TRIUMF.CA>

>Does anyone know of any herbs that help combat fleas. I found a flea in

You have to control fleas on your pet, and ALSO where he sleeps and lies around.

I'll let someone else comment on the pet-food supplements, but as far as carpets and furniture go, the fleas like to live around the edges of the room and within 3 cm or so underneath the edges of the furniture. Then cannot live in well travelled areas, but the hatchlings need to live close to where the adult fleas make their droppings after they have their blood meals (on the dog or cat or people).

So, vacuum well (daily) the furniture and all around it. Get the edges of the carpet. And sprinkle a little baking soda in those areas I described above.

Also, apparently fleas don't like pennyroyal, but I'm not sure of the application.

From: Anita F Hales <JSAFH.ACA.ALASKA.EDU>

Make a bed for you pet filled with cedar. Fleas hate it.

From: Phxhawk <phxhawk.INDIRECT.COM>

> Does anyone know of any herbs that help combat fleas. I found a flea in

An herbalist I know grows lemongrass- this kills fleas. He said when he shampoos his dog, he grabs a handful of the lemongrass and puts it in the tub of water that he uses to wash his dog. I'm going to try it this summer! Also, diatomaceous earth kills fleas (and other insects) and is not toxic. You can find it at a swimming pool supply store (it's used to filter the water) or perhaps at a nursery.

From: Beth Cuculich <Beth.Cuculich.NCAL.KAIPERM.ORG>

PLEASE be very, very careful with diatomaceous earth on your pets. A friend of mine just had very expensive vet bills for her cat from using it. She put it directly on her cat to get rid of the fleas. It worked but the d. earth is very sharp and the cat ingested quite a bit cleaning itself and had massive internal bleeding. I don't know if this would be as much of a problem with the dog but it's definitely a problem with fastidious cats.

From: Paul Stewart <stewart.BUD.PEINET.PE.CA>

Hi folks:

Anyone who works in a chemistry lab will know where I'm coming from on this one...all others can check it out at their local university.

There is nothing harmless about diatomaceous earth, and there are lots of other examples of other dangerous substances being marketed by pretend ingestion, as in the apocryphal tale of the sergeant in Viet Nam who convinced his unprotected troops of the harmlessness of Agent Orange by drinking it! Most chem labs filter sludgy mixtures with a form of diatomaceous earth called Celite (TM). The Materials Safety Data Sheet accompanying it clearly calls for a dust mask, gloves, and fume hood for measuring and other handling. I have been personally chided for filtering with Celite outside a fume hood. The stuff is insidious in that it is too heavy for the mucociliary elevator to completely clear out of the lungs, where it can slowly degrade alveoli and cause all kinds of respiratory problems, including silicosis. Check it out, and keep it off your animals. Don't believe me, ask a Vet.

Hope I don't sound too preachy, but this is not a mysterious issue. Bye for now, and remember the first two laws of chemistry labs:
-don't lick the spoon
-hot glass looks just like cold glass

Paul from the Great White Northeast :-)