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How to Prevent Ticks on Dogs Naturally: 9 Ways to Repel Ticks

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To prevent ticks naturally, use natural products such as essential oils, citrus fruits. Besides using natural remedies on your pet, you should also prevent ticks in your home or garden.

Ticks are external parasites that hide in your dog’s fur and feed on its blood. A tick can feed for several hours before it transmits diseases to your pet (if the tick is infected). 

Infected ticks also transmit diseases to humans, not just dogs, which is why it’s vital to prevent these pests on your dog, in your home, and garden.

If your dog is heavily infested with ticks, you should seek the help of your veterinarian. In such cases, the use of natural remedies will not work.

To prevent a dog from getting ticks, you need to use chemicals or natural remedies. Considering that ticks are more dangerous than fleas because they can transmit fatal diseases to pets, it is recommended to use only approved products to prevent them.

In this article, you will learn how to prevent ticks on dogs with natural home remedies, what natural repellents you can use on your pet, and how to prevent ticks in your home or garden.

3 Natural Home Remedies To Repel Ticks on Dogs

Three natural home remedies you can use against ticks include essential oils, citrus fruit, and apple cider vinegar. Natural home remedies don’t always work against ticks though. These methods seem to be more efficient against fleas than ticks.

Natural home remedies are safe for dogs if used with caution. If you have certain essential oils, lemons, or vinegar at home, you can try using them to keep ticks away from your dog.

Related: How to Prevent Ticks on Dogs

1. Essential Oils

Essential Oils for dog ticks

Due to the volatile oils these products contain, some essential oils also have repellent properties. They are safe if used with caution in keeping fleas and ticks at bay.

They may also benefit your pet’s health (asthma, skin allergies, etc.), but always contact your veterinarian before using them.

The essential oils that are considered safe for dogs and can be used to prevent ticks are:

  • Lavender
  • Lemongrass
  • Citronella
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Cedarwood
  • Peppermint
  • Black cumin seeds
  • Eucalyptus
  • Tea tree

When choosing to use any of these essential oils on your dog, keep in mind that they should always be diluted. Never use 100% essential oils.

Essential oils can be diluted with water or carrier oils, such as jojoba, coconut, or olive. The proper concentration of essential oil to apply to dogs is a maximum of 2%.

Some essential oils are more potent than others, such as tea tree oil. Always use these products with caution. Make sure your pet doesn’t ingest them as they may cause poisoning.

Here’s how to use different essential oils as natural prevention against ticks.

Lavender or Rosemary Oil

To prepare a tick repellent solution, add 5-7 drops of lavender or rosemary essential oil to your dog’s shampoo. Wash your dog regularly with this shampoo.

Lavender Essential Oil for Fleas on Dogs

Essential Oil Combo

You can add a few drops of several essential oils (peppermint, rosemary, eucalyptus, thyme, and citronella) to a cup of water. Spray your dog’s fur with this solution every other day, especially its legs.[1]

A mixture of thyme and citronella oils in a concentration of 1.5% has repellent properties for ticks on dogs. Add ten drops of citronella oil and five drops of thyme oil to 30 ml of water. Shake well and spray the solution on your pet’s legs.

Eucalyptus Oil

If you want to use eucalyptus oil, add 20 drops to 30 ml of water and spray your dog’s fur (especially its legs) once every two days. Shake well before applying.[2] 

You can also use eucalyptus oil in your dog’s shampoo – add three drops of oil per tablespoon of dog shampoo.

Lemongrass Oil

Add five drops of lemongrass oil and 30 ml of water in a spray bottle. Shake well before applying the solution to your pet.

Lemongrass Oil

Cedarwood Oil

Cedarwood contains cedrol, a sentence that was proven to kill 100% of the black-legged tick nymphs.[3] Add two drops of cedarwood oil for every ounce of carrier oil. Apply the solution to your dog’s legs, fur, or textile collar.

Always avoid spraying essential oils on your dog’s face or make sure your pet doesn’t ingest them.

2. Citrus Fruit

Citrus Fruit

Citrus fruits can help repel ticks. Of this category, the most used are lemons. You can use lemon juice, peel, or pulp to prepare repellent solutions.

Studies have shown that lemons can be used successfully to keep fleas away[4]. You can also try them for ticks. All you have to do is add the peel of a lemon to 240 ml of water and leave the solution aside for a day. Strain the liquid and apply it to your dog[5]. You can spray it on your dog’s legs or fur or use it for rinsing after bathing.

Other ways you can use lemon as a repellent is to add lemon juice to your dog’s shampoo or:

  1. Add lemon juice, pulp, and peel to a cup of water.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Allow it to cool.
  4. Wash or rinse your pet with it.

3. Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar can be used to repel ticks, but the results are not guaranteed. Dilute it with water and wash your dog with this solution, or use it for rinsing. Add one part vinegar to two parts water or 1:1. 

Your dog will have a pungent smell, but a shiny coat.

3 Natural Tick Repellents for Dogs

If you are not a fan of chemical products, there are other alternatives you can use, such as natural (herbal) powders, collars, or shampoos. You can also try to make them yourself by using home ingredients.

1. Tick Powder

Tick Powder
Image Source

Tick herbal powders contain several ingredients, which combined have a repellent effect:

  • Garlic
  • Neem
  • Or other ingredients

Although garlic is toxic to dogs, the amounts used in these natural products are insignificant and should not cause side effects. In any case, do not allow your dog to inhale or ingest the powder.

You can also make your own tick powder at home using the following ingredients:[6]

  1. One and a half cups of food-grade diatomaceous earth.
  2. One-quarter of a cup of lemongrass powder.
  3. One-quarter of a cup of neem leaf powder.
  4. 10 drops of lemongrass essential oil.
  5. Mix and shake the ingredients well and set the powder aside for 24 hours. 
  6. Use within one year.

2. Flea and Tick Collars

What Is a Flea Collar
Image Source

As with tick powders, there are also herbal anti-parasitic collars. You can buy these products from pet shops or veterinary offices.

You can also make flea and tick repellent collars at home by using essential oils. Add 3-5 drops of lavender oil to 1-3 tablespoons of water. Apply five drops of this mixture to your dog’s collar. Reapply once per week.[7]

If you want to use cedar oil on your dog’s collar, add 3-5 drops of oil to 1-3 tablespoons of water and apply only five drops of this solution to your dog’s collar. Reapply the solution once per week.

3. Tick Shampoo

Antiparasitic shampoo for pets

You can make a tick-repellent shampoo at home using dog shampoo. Add the juice of a lemon or a few drops of essential oil to your dog’s regular shampoo. Bathe your pet with this shampoo and rinse well.

3 Ways to Prevent Ticks from Your Home and Garden

To be completely sure you get rid of ticks, you also have to apply some prevention methods in your house and garden. You can use natural ingredients, such as diatomaceous earth or nematodes. You should also keep your home clean at all times.

1. Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth is a natural remedy that can help you get rid of ticks and prevent them in your home or garden. It has absorbent properties, causing ticks and their eggs to dehydrate and die.

Sprinkle diatomaceous earth on your carpets, furniture, cracks, floors, or outside in your garden. Make sure it doesn’t get damp or wet. If this happens, reapply it. Leave it for at least 12 hours. It is considered safe for pets if ingested.

Only use ‘food grade’ Diatomaceous earth as products marked ‘filter grade’ can be harmful to pets.

2. Nematodes

Nematodes
Image Source

Nematodes can be used in the garden to control unwanted pests, such as ticks. The ones that cause diseases to insects (entomopathogenic) can be used with success for killing ticks also (ticks are not insects). 

Studies have shown that nematodes are more effective at killing unfed females and males and engorged ticks than larval or nymph stages.[8]

Nematodes are harmless to pets.

3. Keep Your Home Clean

Red vacuum cleaner on a beige carpet

It is generally recommended to vacuum at least once a week or more if you see ticks or their eggs in your home.

Make sure to vacuum the following carefully:

  • Rugs
  • Plinths
  • Under the furniture
  • In the places where your pet sleeps
  • In your car, if you take your dog in it

After vacuuming, mop the floor. Add a few drops of essential oil to the water for an extra repelling effect.

For your carpet or furniture, such as sofas, armchairs, or beds, it is best to use steam cleaning. You can also steam the places where your dog sleeps.

Make sure to wash the lining (if detachable and washable) and dog bedding often.

FAQs

What Repels Ticks on Dogs?

The most effective products for repelling ticks on dogs are recommended by vets, such as spot-on pipettes, collars, sprays, or antiparasitic chewable tablets.

How Do I Prevent My Dog From Getting Ticks?

Use antiparasitic products regularly and check your dog for ticks after each walk. In this way, you can find recently attached ticks that didn’t feed. You can also use a flea comb. It will grab the unattached ticks.

About Iulia Mihai (DVM)

Dr. Iulia is a certified veterinarian with more than 10 years of experience in the field. With extensive knowledge of diet, care, and medication, she helps Misfit Animals provide readers with accurate knowledge on technical topics.

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