5 Best Essential Oils for Fleas on Dogs in 2021 – Reviews & Top Picks

Dog and Essential Oil_shutterstock_Te9lEssential oils are plant extracts and are often used in aromatherapy as well as in alternative medicine. They have been used for everything from promoting relaxation to fertility, and while diffusers and burners are popular methods for accessing the healthy benefits of these oils, plenty of other methods do exist, including the topical application of oils to the skin.

As well as finding use on humans, essential oils have proven a popular relaxant and health remedy for our pets, too. But before reaching for your nearest bottle of ylang-ylang, you should know that some of these oils are toxic to dogs while others can prove dangerous when applied or given in too large a quantity. As such, you should check any health claims and ascertain the safety of essential oils before using them on your dog. Don’t assume that a pet essential oil is definitely safe for use on your pooch.

With that in mind, and with the surprising range of canine essential oils for fleas and flea control, we have written a list of reviews of the top 5 best essential oils for your dogs that can help combat fleas and prevent them from taking up residence on your dog.


A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
NOW Eucalyptus Oil NOW Eucalyptus Oil
  • Natural, organic eucalyptus
  • Decent price
  • Steam extracted
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Sun Peppermint Essential Oils Sun Peppermint Essential Oils
  • 100% natural peppermint extracts
  • Good price
  • Tested and bottled in the USA
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Radha Beauty Lavender Essential Oil Radha Beauty Lavender Essential Oil
  • 100% natural lavender oil
  • Not tested on animals
  • Includes a dropper
  • Artizen Citronella Essential Oil Artizen Citronella Essential Oil
  • Smells of citrus
  • 100% natural citronella extract
  • Includes dropper
  • Healing Solutions Peppermint Essential Oil Healing Solutions Peppermint Essential Oil
  • Natural peppermint oil
  • Selection of sizes
  • Therapeutically effective peppermint extract
  • The 5 Best Essential Oils for Fleas on Dogs – Reviews 2021

    1. NOW 7546 Essential Oils – Best Overall

    NOW 7546 Essential Oils

    We found NOW 7546 Essential Oils to be a great solution to our canine’s flea problem. Beware, eucalyptus is toxic for dogs when ingested, so you need to ensure that this is properly prepared and given to your dog. If he licks at the spray, stop giving it.

    The eucalyptus oil can be diluted by adding half a dozen drops to a cup of water. Place this in a spray bottle and mist your dog’s coat two or three times a week. The oil and water separate, so ensure that you mix it up before each use because this will help prevent you from applying a pure form of the oil to your dog.

    The Now Essential Oil is 100% pure eucalyptus, is extracted through steaming, and is reasonably priced. A bottle will last for several months using the ratio provided, but you will need a separate dropper or dispensing method because the Now oil doesn’t include its own.

    Pros
    • Natural, organic eucalyptus
    • Decent price
    • 100% pure essential oil
    • Steam extracted
    Cons
    • No dropper

    2. Sun Peppermint Essential Oils – Best Value

    Sun Peppermint Essential Oils

    Peppermint oil is another essential oil that is toxic if ingested but can be highly effective in your fight against dog fleas. Even PETA recommends the use of a peppermint oil spray to help combat a flea infestation.

    Like the eucalyptus, you can make a flea-busting spray by adding half a dozen drops of Sun’s Peppermint Essential Oil to water and then misting your dog every few days. If you need to increase the strength, add drops of a different oil.  The oils are tested and bottled in the USA. Sun’s Peppermint Essential Oil is made by cold pressing or distilling the plant components to extract the oil.

    As well as helping to fight fleas on your dog, this spray will leave a pleasant minty smell in your home, too. We think it’s one of the best essential oils for fleas on dogs for the money.

    Pros
    • Tested and bottled in the USA
    • 100% natural peppermint extracts
    • Good price
    • Minty fresh smell
    Cons
    • Not the strongest smelling peppermint

    3. Radha Beauty Lavender Essential Oil – Premium Choice

    Radha Beauty Lavender Essential Oil

    Radha Beauty Lavender Essential Oil is more expensive than the two previous options, but it is 100% natural, has not been tested on animals, and comes with a convenient dropper that makes it much easier to measure and control the amount of the oil that you dispense.

    Not only will lavender help to fight the fleas, but it also has antibacterial properties, which can help protect against infection, and it also works as an anti-itch agent, which helps combat the biggest symptom associated with dog fleas. It also works as a relaxant, in dogs as well as humans.

    Mix a few drops into a cup of water, spray every couple of days, and every member of your household will feel the benefits, not just your furry friends.

    Pros
    • 100% natural lavender oil
    • Not tested on animals
    • Includes a dropper for easy dispensing
    Cons
    • Pricey

    4. Artizen Citronella Essential Oil

    Artizen Citronella Essential Oil

    Citronella oil is collected from the lemongrass plant. It has a citrusy aroma, which will help to stave off fleas but may prove unpopular with some dogs and even owners.

    The Artizen Citronella Essential Oil is often found in cleaning products and other home sprays. It has antifungal and antibacterial properties, which makes citronella spray beneficial to your dog in many ways. You can dilute citronella in the same way you would other essential oils. As well as spraying it onto your dog, you can use a cloth and rub it onto the affected areas of your dog’s skin and coat. Not only can this help soothe bite sites and stop fleas from getting hold of your dog’s skin, but it leaves a pleasant smell that the rest of the house will benefit from.

    This is quite an expensive oil, but the bottle does include a stopper for convenience, and a little of the mixture really does go a long way.

    Pros
    • Smells of citrus
    • 100% natural citronella extract
    • Includes dropper
    Cons
    • Quite expensive
    • Not all dogs will like the citrus smell

    5. Healing Solutions Peppermint Essential Oil

    Healing Solutions Peppermint Essential Oil

    Healing Solutions Peppermint Essential Oil is 100% pure peppermint oil that comes in a variety of sizes. It is quite expensive compared to others on this list but comes in a variety of different size bottles. The company claims that they extract from the most therapeutically effective peppermint, which gives the oil a more powerful effect than alternative oils.

    The bottles do not come with a dropper, so you will have to employ your own method of measuring and pouring the oil. Some have claimed that this particular brand is diluted, although this isn’t an issue when it comes to strength because you will be diluting the oil anyway, it does mean that you may have to use more of the oil to get the same results. Ultimately, a more diluted oil will end up costing more.

    Pros
    • Natural peppermint oil
    • Selection of sizes
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • No dropper
    • Diluted

    Buyer’s Guide

    Fleas are a major problem for a lot of dogs. In mild cases, they are an irritant that can lead to itching and that may cause flaky skin and degraded fur quality. In severe cases, they can lead to contact dermatitis while flea sites may become infected and lead to serious irritation and problems.

    Finding a way to control fleas is important, but if you want to avoid using prescription medication or harsh over the counter chemicals, there are some natural alternatives. Essential oils are extracts of herbs and other plants. They are taken from the leaves, flowers, buds, and other parts of the plant, and they should be extracted using a natural method like cold pressing.

    Are Essential Oils Safe?

    The resulting oil is usually strong and will need diluting with some kind of agent to provide a solution that is safe and sympathetic for regular use. This is especially true when using the oil on your pets because their skin and coat are extra sensitive.

    Some oils, no matter how diluted, are dangerous for use on pets and should be avoided altogether.

    Other oils, including eucalyptus, are toxic when ingested. This means that you should not feed them to your dog. It also means that, once you have applied a mist or rub using these oils, you will have to keep a watchful eye on your pet to ensure that they are not licking most of it off.

    Application Method

    The most common methods of applying an essential oil dilution are spraying and rubbing, but there are a few other options as well:

    • Create a natural flea spray by mixing five or six drops of essential oil with a cup of water. Ensure that the mixture is thoroughly combined by stirring and shaking. Remember that most oils will separate from water over time. As you are only applying these mixtures every two or three days, shake the bottle well before each This will help ensure that the oil mixes with the water and that you are not spraying pure and undiluted oil on your dog’s coat. If you create a spray using one type of essential oil, and this does not work, try adding a second type of oil rather than increasing the amount of original oil that you use. You can combine several different oils to create a potent anti-flea spray.
    • You can even apply these natural flea treatments to your furniture and your carpets as a furniture flea spray. In fact, this should be considered part of a flea treatment program. Fleas can live in carpets and lay their eggs t If you only treat the fleas on your dog, they are likely to become reinfected again and the problem will persist and repeat itself.
    • Another way of applying essential oils to your dog is via a rub or massage. The oil still needs diluting, and you can follow the same dilution application as you would when creating a spray, but you can create a topical flea rub. Add a few drops to a cup of water, dip a clean cloth in the liquid, and then use this to rub the afflicted area of your dog. Improve the experience by massaging the oil into your dog but be sure to watch for signs of irritation.
    • Create an anti-flea shampoo. Add half a dozen drops to your normal bottle of dog shampoo and then apply the shampoo as you normally would. This can be especially effective with eucalyptus oil which is made from the branches and leaves of the plant. The strong smell of the eucalyptus will deter fleas and help keep your dog’s coat clean.

    Symptoms of Fleas

    Fleas are tiny, parasitic insects. They are very small, can be difficult to spot, and they consume the blood of their host. Fleas commonly live on cats and dogs. When they bite and latch on, your pet will react by scratching at the site to try and remove them. Over time, this can lead to major irritation. Left untreated, fleas can become more than just an irritant to your dogs. Fleas can cause conditions including flea allergy dermatitis, flea anemia, and even tapeworms.

    Look for signs of your dog scratching and biting more than usual. If you see areas of skin that are red and inflamed, this is a good sign that your dog has a serious flea problem.

    Essential Oils

    There are hundreds of different essential oils on the market. Some are not recommended for dogs, while others are not as effective as a treatment against fleas. These are well-known for their soothing qualities, especially as it relates to fleas:

    • Peppermint – Strictly speaking, peppermint oil does not directly kill fleas. But it does eradicate flea larvae, which means that it prevents new fleas from infecting your dog. It has properties that will help the afflicted area heal, too. It can help combat skin irritation and inflammation caused by bites.
    • Eucalyptus – Eucalyptus is a strong-smelling tree. It will deter fleas, kill them, and it has antibacterial properties so it can help to combat infection caused at the wound site of flea bites.
    • Citronella – Citronella is similar to lemongrass. As the name suggests, it has a citrus aroma and shares other properties with citrus fruits. This means that it can be used to reduce swelling. It has antibacterial properties, too, which is why it is often found in aftershaves.
    essential oils
    Image Credit: NatureFriend, Pixabay

    Features

    When looking at essential oils, consider the following factors and look for the most important features:

    • Glass Bottles – Essential oils need to be kept in glass bottles, and ideally in dark glass bottles. This helps protect them from harmful UV rays and helps to prolong the life of your essential oils.
    • Droppers – Essential oils need diluting before they are given to your dog. Typically, you should start with a mix of around six drops to a single cup of water. Look for essential oil bottles that include a dropper or some other form of dispenser that makes it easier to measure drops of the oil.
    • Natural Extraction Methods – Essential oils are oils extracted from fruits, herbs, and other plants. They need to be extracted from the leaves, buds, and other parts of the plant. While there are several possible methods of extraction, you should look for natural extraction techniques. Cold pressing is a common method of natural extraction that does not use any chemicals during the process.

    Conclusion

    Essential oils are not only beneficial for humans but can be useful for our pets, too. Certain aromas, such as peppermint and eucalyptus, can make effective natural anti-flea remedies. They will kill fleas off and prevent infestation.

    They can also act as an anti-itching agent, while their antibacterial properties help to protect bite sites and prevent infection if your dog has been busy scratching the site for a prolonged period. You should always ensure that you buy a good quality oil, that you do your own research to determine what is safe and effective, and that you apply it in a way that will prevent irritation and negative side effects.

    We have included reviews of five essential oils that have proven effective in the fight against fleas. Now Essential Oils Eucalyptus Oil is not only a great flea deterrent but smells good and is well priced. Sun Peppermint Essentials Oils cost even less, have a more distinct scent, and act as an antibacterial and anti-itch agent for your dog, too.


    Featured Image Credit: Te9l, Shutterstock