Monday, August 10, 2009

MIYMonday - Flea Fighting Dog Biscuits

The Frugal Homestead was recently infested with fleas. Boy, was it ever horrible. The Frugal Hostess and Husband started out trying not to use chemicals, researching home remedies and natural products that were supposed to rid the house of fleas. Well, friends, the fact of the matter is that, once the situation is advanced enough to qualify as a full-on infestation, the home remedies are just about useless. Bomb the crap out of the little buggers with chemicals, get rid of them, and then start your all-natural flea prevention campaign.

There are a number of different things you can do to prevent fleas from taking over your home. One of the most effective for TFH was to sprinkle Borax all over the carpet and big rug. Borax is a non-toxic, uh, thing – not sure if one would say non-toxic chemical? It’s a powder, kind of like baking soda, and it has a multitude of applications around the house. It is also very inexpensive. Anyway, if you sprinkle that around the house, leave it over night, and then vacuum it up the next day, it will kill/maim/destroy flea eggs without doing the same to your pets and yourself.

Another suggestion is to put a small amount of apple cider vinegar in your pets’ water each day; this is supposed to keep fleas away over time. Who knows how – probably something all sciency and boring. The Frugal Hostess made a solution of half water and half apple cider vinegar, then added to that a few drops of castile soap, a few drops of citronella oil, and a few drops of peppermint oil to mask the smell of the citronella (which is totally gross). If you don’t have cats, you could use tea tree oil instead of citronella oil (cats are opposed to the oil of the tea tree and will scratch your eyes out of you put it on them). TFH put all of that in a spray bottle and uses it as an all-purpose cleaner which has the added bonus of repelling bugs.

A final, and universally agreed-upon, natural solution is garlic. Apparently, fleas and other pests hate garlic and will stay off of your garlic-eating dog. Obviously, it might be a little awkward to feed your dog cloves of garlic, so here’s a recipe for garlicky dog treats. These have the added (subtracted?) bonus of having no gross chemicals or fillers, and you can even make them organic by choosing organic ingredients.


2 teaspoons yeast

Half cup lukewarm water

2 tablespoons parsley (optional)

3 tablespoons minced fresh garlic

1 1/2 cups chicken broth

3 tablespoons honey

1 egg

5 cups of whole wheat flour


1. Dissolve yeast in water.

2. Stir in all ingredients except flour.

3. Gradually blend in flour, adding enough to form a stiff dough.

4. Transfer to floured surface and knead 3-5 minutes or until smooth.

5. Roll and cut with cookie cutters (dog bone shape is best, but anything rather small will do).

6. Bake 30 minutes. Turn over and bake an additional 15 minutes.

7. Let cool overnight.

These last forever and freeze well. Enjoy! Woof!

Photo by Ashnikov

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