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Using Vinegar to Kill Fleas


Strange quirks of nature abound, wherein a seemingly unrelated substance can repel a particular form of bug or pest. Such is the case with vinegar and the common, household flea. For whatever reason, fleas do not like the smell or taste of this much beloved home remedy substance.

Apple Cider Vinegar for Prevention

On the preventative side, the Partnership for Animal Welfare (PAW) recommends that a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar be added to your dog or cat’s drinking water. Regular vinegar is too acidic for this purpose, but the proper amount of Apple Cider Vinegar can allow it to gently seep into the animal’s metabolism. Apple cider vinegar can also be used for all other scenarios mentioned here.

Vinegar Fur Treatment

As far as treating animals and household areas infested with fleas, there a a number of options involving the application of vinegar baths, vinegar sprays or vinegar wipe-downs. Generally speaking, if the household solution is to be applied directly to a dog or cat, it should be mixed to the proportion of one part vinegar and three parts water, with owners being sure to avoid the animal’s eyes and remain aware of any individual skin sensitivities or open sores. If on the other hand the solution is being sprayed onto a pet’s bedding or other household area, it can be mixed to a stronger consistency of half vinegar, half water.

Simple Solutions

Another surprisingly simple solution to ridding a household of fleas brought in by a pet dog or cat is to place a bowl filled with a shallow amount of undiluted vinegar on couch, carpet or other affected area. The Internet abounds with pet owner testimonials of how effective this method is, with fleas dying in the vinegar substance after being drawn to the bowl. Optionally, a candle may be placed in the center of the vinegar bowl to add the element of heat to the equation and thus help additionally draw in the targeted fleas.



Tierney, Robin. “Dog Tip: Fleas, Ticks, Mosquitoes – Prevention and Treatment.” Partnership for Animal Welfare. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 July 2010.

“Vinegar will attract and kill fleas – Great uses of Vinegar.” Great uses for Vinegar – The Vinegar Book. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 July 2010.

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