Diatomaceous Earth For Flea Control In House: Tackling An Infestation
In its use as a pesticide, DE has proven to be effective in preventing and controlling fleas on pets. When finely-grounded, it pierces insects exoskeletons and works its way dehydrating them. Apart from pets, you can also use diatomaceous earth on carpets for fleas. However, applying this product to deal with an infestation in your home will be different from how you use it on your cat.
So, how do you use diatomaceous earth for fleas that have infested your home? Start by applying the substance daily everywhere the fleas are present until you begin to see changes. Once the infestation has died down a bit, you can space out your applications to once every week for prevention against another infestation. Ensure you pay extra attention to areas where your pet likes to sleep and hang around.
Diatomaceous Earth For Cats
While it’s more common to use Diatomaceous Earth as flea prevention, many people have added small amounts of DE to their pet’s diet. There a numerous benefits a pet can receive from a consistent dosage of DE. Pet owners who have given their pets DE have found their pet has an improved coat, appetite, metabolism, and digestion.
DE is largely made up of amorphous silica, but it also contains calcium, magnesium, titanium dioxide, gallium, sodium, and other trace minerals. Keep in mind that there are different grades of diatomaceous earth, so make sure you purchase food grade diatomaceous earth for your pet.
The instructions below are on how to feed your cat DE.
Diatomaceous Earth For Dogs & Cats: Fight Fleas & Ticks Naturally
When it comes to the health and wellbeing of your furbabies, natural remedies are preferable. That goes for flea and tick solutions, too.
Have you heard of diatomaceous earth ? Its a powder made of diatoms.
Made of what, now?
Diatoms. Fossilized phytoplankton. Algae. Single-celled organisms composed of transparent, opaline silica.
Its been used for all kinds of things, including fighting off bugs and slugs, and protecting your grass from grubs and maggots.
Diatomaceous earth is used to fight bed bugs, and is also used as a topical treatment to fight off seasonal fleas and ticks from both dogs and cats.
Now, if youve done any research on diatomaceous earth, you may have read some conflicting reviews about whether or not its safe to use on your pets. Were going to share the many wondrous benefits of diatomaceous earth and were going to shed light on the potential downsides, too.
Our goal is to give you all the information you need to make your own informed decision about using diatomaceous earth as a flea and tick treatment for your pet.
Continue reading for answers to questions like:
- What is diatomaceous earth?
So lets dive right in to the good stuff.
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Are You Using Diatomaceous Earth For Your Cat
If you want to kill and prevent pests and the diseases they bring, you definitely need DE. It is a natural and safer alternative to most pesticides. Buying DE for your cat for preventing fleas on it will save you both time and money, as you will make fewer trips to the vet.
I want to remind you that the DE comes in different varieties. So, choose food grade diatomaceous earth for fleas if you are using it around your household. There are many options of diatomaceous earth with calcium bentonite for fleas available. From my experience and other users reviews, Harris and Red Lake diatomaceous earth for fleas are the most popular options.
Are you currently using DE for your cat flea control? Do you have more tips on how to use diatomaceous earth for fleas on cats that youd like to add? Share your experience or opinion in the comment section below.
Where To Buy Diatomaceous Earth
Food-grade diatomaceous earth for fleas and other pests is sold primarily at hardware stores and pet supply stores, including online. Diatomaceous earth powder is the most common form and it usually comes in bags, but is also available in jars and bottles.
Its important to purchase the food-grade variety of diatomaceous earth if you plan to use it at home. Additionally, Pet parents should make sure they are purchasing a product that is approved by the EPA and that is coming from a reputable distributor, says Falk. They should beware of any product that says that it should be applied directly to the pet.
Finding a safe and effective flea preventative is essential for your pets health and comfort. Talk to your veterinarian about the best options for your situation.
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How Long Does Diatomaceous Earth Take To Kill Fleas On Cats
It kills fleas by drying them up from the inside. The substance gets into exoskeletons of fleas and dries oils, water, and fats. Dont worry, it does not kill big animals, like cats. It takes up to 4 hours for Diatomaceous Earth to kill the fleas, from the time it penetrated the skeleton of the flea.
Considerations Before Using Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is safe to use on pet bedding. However, prolonged exposure can have a slight drying effect on your pet’s skin. For better flea prevention, wash pet bedding in hot water once a week.
Because diatomaceous earth kills with a mechanical method fleas will not become immune to it.
Diatomaceous earth must be dry to work. Do not wet it down or mix it with water to make a spray. Also, note that diatomaceous earth is less effective in humid environments.
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How Does Diatomaceous Earth For Fleas On Cats Work
Diatomaceous Earth for fleas on cats is an effective method of flea control. This flea control method is chemical free. You have control over the dose and the application. This article outlines everything you need to know.
Some background info
Diatomaceous earth is made up of diatoms. Diatoms are the fossilized remains of a type of algae. DE looks like powder as shown below.
In order to kill fleas, the powderlike DE is sprinkled around the home and yard, in places where the cat hangs out.
It is the diatoms that scratch away at the waxy layer of the exoskeleton of the flea. The flea dies because moisture from the body of the flea evaporates and the flea then dehydrates and dies.
It is going to take a little more effort on your part than putting a flea collar on your cat or applying flea drops. However this is a chemical free option which can also be used to get rid of fleas from around your home. Plus it works just as well for dogs.
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DE can have an abrasive feel, similar to pumice powder. Although it looks like powder it is actually a mineral dust.
Natural Flea Control For Cats With Diatomaceous Earth
Fleas are blood-sucking parasites that live outside, in our homes, and on our pets. The good thing, though, is that fleas hate diatomaceous earth.
Crawling Insect Control Diatomaceous earth is a natural pest control that is great to use around your home because it’s natural and safe, making it the perfect option to treat your cats for fleas.
Follow the steps below to use DE as a natural flea control for your cat.
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Is Diatomaceous Earth Safe For Cats
Yes, for the most part. Kittens that are still nursing or weigh less than two pounds should probably not be exposed to DE. A cat that weighs between two and six and a half pounds can safely eat a half teaspoon of food grade DE with every meal.
Cats that weigh more than that but less than thirteen pounds can have a teaspoonful with every meal. Large cats that weigh over thirteen pounds will find one and a half teaspoon to be the safest and most effective dosage.
It should pass through your cat’s system harming nothing but the internal parasites the worms. DE is safe to eat with most supplements but consult with a veterinarian if your cat is on any sort of medication.
Can You Use Diatomaceous Earth For Fleas
Reviewed for accuracy on July 8, 2019, by Dr. Katie Grzyb, DVM
If you prefer to use DIY products for your four-legged family member, youve probably read about diatomaceous earth for fleas. While it does kill fleas, there are some important things to be aware of before using it.
Here is everything you need to know about using diatomaceous earth for fleas so that you can make an informed decision about whether it is the right choice for your home and pets.
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What On Earth Is Diatomaceous Earth
For pet parents seeking a natural way to ward off pests, diatomaceous earth for fleas has long been considered an effective option. But if youve never heard of DE, you probably have questions: Does diatomaceous earth kill fleas effectively? How do you use diatomaceous earth to kill fleas? What is this stuff, anyway? Can you even pronounce it?
Read on to learn more about this unique, naturally occurring substance, and how to use diatomaceous earth for fleas on dogs and cats.
How Does Diatomaceous Earth Kill Fleas
The small particles of DE actually look like shards of glass when examined under the microscope, says Dr. Dolores Costantino, a veterinarian with HousePaws Mobile Veterinary Service in Morrisville, Pennsylvania.
A flea that ingests diatomaceous earth will be torn apart, explains Dr. Costantino. But it doesnt have to only be ingested to be effective.
According to the National Pesticide Information Center , Diatomaceous earth causes insects to dry out and die by absorbing the oils and fats from the cuticle of the insect’s exoskeleton. Its sharp edges are abrasive, speeding up the process.
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What Is Diatomaceous Earth Made Out Of
Diatomaceous earth is made out of fossilized diatoms, which form a substance called silica.
Diatomaceous earth is made out of diatoms, aquatic organisms that you may have never heard of. It is not the diatoms that form silica but their skeletons. As diatoms die in the water, their skeletons build up in bodies of water and are then mined.
Diatomaceous earth is like dust that is usually found in powder products, so you usually wont find 100% diatomaceous earth products.
Not to worry, however. These products are specifically formulated for many different uses, including on animals to kill fleas and ticks.
How To Use De For Fleas
DE can kill fleas thanks to its microscopically-sharp edges. It wont hurt you because the sharp edges are so tiny, but for an insect, its like crawling over broken glass. It will pierce their outer shell and kill them in a matter of hours or days. There are a few ways to use DE for fleas:
- Externally after potential flea exposure:
Just sprinkle it on your pets coat and thoroughly brush it through all their fur before a walk, hike, or other potential flea exposure. Youll have to do this every time they go outside in a flea-ridden area and apply the DE before they come inside.
Note: Be careful when applying it around your dogs nose, eyes, and mouth. Make sure its not drying out or irritating your pups skinif your dog already has dry skin, dont use it externally too often.
- In your yard/garden:
If you know there are fleas in your yard, sprinkling DE in the soil can kill the fleas and their larvae. Also kills ticks, earwigs, and other bugs! Its non-toxic to your pets, so you wont have to worry when they nibble on the grass or roll in the dirt.
- In your home, in case of an infestation:
Apply it to bedding and carpeting, leave it for at least 3 days, then vacuum it up. It does take 3+ days to work, but it will kill the larvae and adult fleas, breaking the life cycle and making your home flea-free!
Note: several sources recommend using a shop vac to vacuum up the remaining DE, since its sharp edges can be damaging to regular vacuum cleaners over time.
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Will Diatomaceous Earth Hurt My Pet
We mentioned earlier that DE looks like glass shards under a microscope.
Wont that hurt my pet? you ask.
We hear your concern, and thats a valid question. But no. Dont worry.
Most types of dirt look like broken glass under the microscope, but we still take our pets to the park and to the beach! Its those tiny insects were trying to keep off our pets that cant handle diatomaceous earth. Your pets skin is tough enough to stand up against DE powder.
Can I feed diatomaceous earth to my pet?
Some suggest DE can be used to combat internal parasites by giving it to your pet in his food. If youre going to go this route, make sure youre feeding food grade diatomaceous earth. The stuff they use for filtration and garden pesticides is different , and can be harmful to your pet.
In the same breath, however, those same people claim that its super important to keep DE away from your pets eyes, nose and mouth, as it can irritate mucous membranes.
We think thats a bit conflicting. Its pretty tough to feed something orally while keeping it away from the rest of the face, but thats just our opinion.
According to Healthline, further research is required to prove the efficacy of DE as a parasite killer.
Diatomaceous Earth Application For Fleas: Other Uses
Apart from controlling fleas and other insects, DE also has other uses. I have, for example, used it on cat litter. This type of application is not new. People have used DE this way for many years. It is excellent for this use because of its highly absorbent properties. It works much like a Silica product. Its also an eco-friendlier alternative to clay litters, and it can be flushed down the toilet with no trouble. Youll actually find plenty of cat litter manufacturers using DE in their products.
DE may also be used in controlling internal parasites in livestock and home animals. It has often been hailed as a safe alternative to chemical de-wormers. And since it is not chemical, worms cant build immunity against it. However, more studies are still being conducted to determine the efficiency levels of DE for this purpose.
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How Diatomaceous Earth Works
When ground to a fine powder, DE is still quite abrasive, especially to small organisms such as pests and parasites. It readily penetrates the exoskeleton of these small creatures dehydrating them and stripping them of essential fats and oils necessary for their survival. In turn, they dry up and die. At the same time, DE doesnt affect bigger creatures, such as cats and other animals. That said, you can use diatomaceous earth for flea control on your feline every fortnight to protect it from fleas, ticks, hookworms, and other parasites. It is a naturally occurring pest control substance.
Diatomaceous Earth helps to get rid of fleas in a natural way. It contains fossils of small bio-organisms that previously inhabited water sources. These organisms are known as diatoms. Their skeletons consisted of silica, which with time, turned into silicon dioxide, the compound that works as an insecticide.
Diatomaceous Earth must be used in small doses and under the vets supervision. It is extremely powerful, and its overuse can be dangerous. Silicon dioxide gets into the exoskeletons of fleas, dehydrates them, and kills. Basically, Diatomaceous Earth dries the fleas up from inside. The substance also kills hookworms, ticks, and other small parasites that may occur on the cats fur.
Can I Put Diatomaceous Earth On My Kitten
Due to the lack of harmful chemicals and toxic ingredients in Diatomaceous Earth, it is considered as one of the safest ways to get rid of fleas on kittens. It dehydrates small insects, by attacking their exoskeletons. The flea is killed after 4 hours of interaction with this substance.I recommend you to use Diatomaceous Earth:
- On your kittens toys, its rug and other favorite places
- As a supplement in kittens meal
- Directly on the kitten.
Try Diatomaceous Earth that has a powder duster, like Harris Diatomaceous Earth Food Grade, for example. It will ease up the process of applying. You can use the duster to apply the substance to specific small areas.
I recommend you to use food grade DE for your kitten internally. It will not only kill fleas, but also worms inside your kittens stomach if it has them. Diatomaceous Earth as a food-grade is also safer for your kitten as it will not choke on it. While Diatomaceous Earth does not cause problems with lungs and is not toxic, your kitten may have respiratory problems sniffing it in.
Warning! Do not use the same Diatomaceous Earth powder as you use for the pool filters. It can be harmful to pets. Use only products that were specially created for animals.
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Important Things To Remember About De
Always use great caution when using DE on your cats. Even if the food-grade version is safe to ingest, always wear a mask when using it. Wear gloves or have some lotion in handy as it may result in dry skin. DE is safe to use on pet beddings and works best when dry. Make sure to consult your veterinarian when using DE both for flea control and as a dewormer so you will be guided on the proper usage.
Diatomaceous Earth Vs Cimexa
Diatomaceous earth and Cimexa are both commonly used to kill different kinds of bugs.
|As little as 24 hours||1 to 2 days|
If you are looking to kill bugs quickly, Diatomaceous earth and Cimexa have very similar timeframes for killing bugs, usually about 24 hours. Cimexa and Diatomaceous earth have similar ingredients as well.
Cimexa should never be used directly on pets or in an area of your home where a pet is present. Diatomaceous earth, conversely, can be made in a food-safe way, which means that you have an option to feed it to your pet.
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