Diatomaceous Earth for fleas
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Thread: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

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    animuL is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultDiatomaceous Earth for fleas

    Batman is about 6 weeks old, too young for typical flea medications out there. I came across something called diatomaceous earth that is supposed to be quite harmless to animals yet effective at killing fleas. Does anyone have experience with this stuff?

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    animuL is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    Well I went ahead and bout some of this stuff. It was about $8 for a 4 pound bag at Lowes. On the bag it says hazards to humans and domestic animals are slight eye irritation if it gets in the eyes and it says to avoid inhaling it: about the same warnings you'd expect to see on a bag of dirt I suppose. Its basically a fine powder from diatoms that is sharp and cuts the fleas as they pass thru it, it is not a chemical (strictly a mechanical insecticide) and is thus non-toxic. I put some on my skin for a while first to make sure it didn't dry me out or irritate me. It past that test so I tried a little on Batman for a while. He totally ignored it so eventually I powdered his whole body with it. It didn't really seem to phase him at all, but I noticed it did definitely go to work on the fleas. I would find them and they would be basically twitching out like crazy. I found one flea with none on it so I powdered it and instantly it started twitching and died soon after. Between my wife and I we probably combed Batman with the flea comb, after the powder, for 2 hrs duration and as of this morning I cannot find a single flea after combing for half an hour. I also made sure to change out all bedding and clothing, as well as powder some of the floor where he had been, and vacuum really well. He's going to the vet in a few days and I guess we'll see if this sort of treatment worked. If so, it sure beats harmful, expensive commercial flea medications and its useful around the house for killing most crawling insects like ants and ticks.

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    imported_Nick is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    Yeah, I don't think I'd use it if it says it's hazardous. They make a food grade version, which I'm guessing Lowes wouldn't sell, and I think that's what you're supposed to use. I've never used it, but you may try posting in the holistic section and see what they use. I really think you're supposed to use the food grade type. I would not use any more of what you have until you speak with a vet or someone who knows the proper use.

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    kaytris is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    Quote Originally Posted by animuL
    slight eye irritation if it gets in the eyes and it says to avoid inhaling it: about the same warnings you'd expect to see on a bag of dirt I suppose. Its basically a fine powder from diatoms that is sharp and cuts the fleas as they pass thru it, it
    Think of what that fine powder with sharp edges will do to your puppy's tiny lungs. Please do NOT use it directly on the puppy again, that's not what its meant for - the only use I've ever heard it is to sprinkle it on carpets/rugs/floors to cut the fleas as they hop off to lay eggs.

    I hope you'll be able to make it to the vet tomorrow...

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    sjd78 is offline Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    I know it is used widely in swimming pool filter applications. It is hazardous and will even kill plant life. I wouldnt put it on my pet for any reason whats so ever. JMO

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    imported_nellies mom is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    Do not use this on your dog. I have used it in the past to control slugs in the garden and it's very dusty and can be very harmful to your and your dog's lungs.

    Continue to use the flea comb the vet gave you. That should work.
    <br />~~~~~~~~<br />Danie<br />Nellie, CGC<br />~~~~~~~~<br />The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. -- Gandhi

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    cinderbay is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    When using DE you need to be careful and use the FOOD grade DE.
    Kim

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    cinderbay is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    This comes from Nature's Farmacy site.

    Also called DE, is made of microscopic silica shell remains called diatoms. We carry natural food grade DE, not the swimming pool grade. The difference is that pool DE is chemically treated and partially melted and contains crystalline silica which can cause respiratory irritation. Natural DE is mined, ground, sifted and bagged and contains non-crystalline silica, which is not considered a hazard according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. EPA allows its use in food storage and processing areas. DE has many uses from insect control to animal de-worming. It is not the fastest acting insect control but it does work and is non toxic. Suggested feeding rate: is 1 tbsp per 50# body weight, stirred in food. Maximum 2 tbsp daily. Feed 3 consecutive days monthly when used as a wormer. 1# has 100 tbsp.

    Kim

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    animuL is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    This is not the pool filter kind and Batman has had not acted different at all since I used it. I kept it clear of his head and he ignored it all together. Either way I have yet to find a single flea today so I see no need to use more. Yesterday we pulled off approximately 30-40 fleas... is that typical, bad, not that bad????

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    imported_Nick is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Diatomaceous Earth for fleas

    No, but it's probably the kind for outside. I definitely would not use it again (if you have to later) unless it is the food grade type. When I worked at a vet clinic, I saw far worse. It's good you got a handle on it early, but you'll probably need to treat all bedding and your house and yard (unless you live in an area that's experiencing freezing temperatures). Those suckers are hard to get rid of.

    Out of curiosity, how did you get your pup at only 6 weeks of age?

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