The best flea spray you can use on your cat isn’t bought at the store—it’s made in your kitchen! These homemade flea sprays are safe, easy to make, and inexpensive, but they’re incredibly effective at killing the pesky fleas that are so difficult to get rid of. Follow these simple instructions to make any of these 20 homemade flea sprays for cats, or visit our guide to learn more about preventing and treating fleas naturally here.
1) Lavender + water
The smell of lavender alone is often enough to deter fleas, but when it’s mixed with water and sprayed on your cat’s fur, you get a natural flea repellent that’s safe and effective. Just remember to test any spray first on an inconspicuous area of your cat’s skin (or their ear or belly) to ensure it doesn’t cause any irritation. Spray away from your eyes and mouth so that nothing gets in your cat’s way of breathing or eating. You can also use apple cider vinegar mixed with water instead of plain water to give yourself an extra layer of protection against fleas and ticks.
2) Apple Cider Vinegar + water
Mix one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water and spritz away. There is a reason why veterinarians recommend that their clients use a diluted apple cider vinegar solution to repel fleas. This solution is not only completely natural, but it also smells good and will keep your home smelling fresh and clean as well. Your cat may not enjoy being sprayed down with ACV, but there are plenty of ways to entice them into letting you help them if you play your cards right!
3) Corn Starch + water
If you have fleas in your house, you might want to try making a homemade flea spray using corn starch and water. Place equal parts of corn starch and warm water into a container. Shake or stir well until there are no lumps left in the mixture. Apply liberally on your pet’s coat from head to toe and dry before letting your pet outside or returning indoors. Store unused portions of powder in an airtight jar at room temperature for future use, but discard any portion that has come into contact with human skin or clothing since it could be an irritant. (Note: This recipe works well when sprinkled on carpets as well.)
4) Baking Soda + Salt + Essential Oils
To make your flea spray, mix 1 tablespoon of baking soda, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 20 drops of essential oils. Mix them thoroughly and rub them into your cat’s fur. Let it sit on her fur for 5 minutes before rinsing off in lukewarm water. This is a natural and chemical-free way to control fleas on your kitty without spending tons of money at the vet’s office. You can also use orange or lemon essential oils if you have any allergies that could be triggered by using peppermint oil; everyone’s body reacts differently!
5) Eucalyptus Oil + Water
There’s a reason eucalyptus oil is often found in commercial flea sprays. It works. To make a homemade flea spray, combine 2 cups of water with 15 drops of eucalyptus essential oil and store in a squirt bottle (like you would use to clean your computer screen). Be sure to keep it out of reach of pets, though! You don’t want them licking it or drinking it. This homemade spray can be used on both animals and furniture to help prevent fleas. Some people even suggest adding 1⁄4 cup of vodka per quart to increase its effectiveness against adult fleas.
6) White Vinegar + Cedarwood Oil
Mix two tablespoons of white vinegar with three drops of cedarwood oil and a cup of water. Spray it onto your pet’s fur, then brush through to coat their skin. Let it sit for 10 minutes, then brush out any excess solution. This can be applied once per week on cats and twice per week on dogs (if you can get them to sit still that long).
7) Epsom Salt + Diatomaceous Earth (Food Grade)
Diatomaceous earth (DE) is an odorless powder made from fossils. This stuff is chock-full of trace minerals and kills fleas on contact. Just mix a cup of DE into two cups of Epsom salt and sprinkle all over your cat (and carpets). Leave it overnight and brush it off in the morning! You can do a few more rounds during peak fleastime in your area for extra measure. It might be tough to get your cat to sit still while you’re dusting him with deadly rock powder, but he’ll thank you in April.
8) Neem Oil + Coconut Oil
Rub these two oils together to form a paste. Massage it onto your pet’s fur and underbelly, paying particular attention to fleabite locations. The coconut oil acts as a protective barrier that keeps fleas from biting, while neem oil works as a natural pesticide. Remove excess with a paper towel. Remember that if you have an indoor-only cat, it’s safest to treat at night when they aren’t roaming outside (if you choose not to let them out).
9) Catnip Essential Oil
Give your feline a burst of energy with catnip essential oil. As an insect repellent, combine 5 drops with 4 ounces of water in a spray bottle and shake well. While it may not be as effective as commercial sprays, it certainly won’t do any harm to your pet or prevent you from enjoying its stimulating aroma! Plus, it doubles as a great alternative to many harmful pesticides on store shelves today. It is recommended that you never spray catnip essential oil directly on the kitty; instead, mix up a batch of homemade flea spray to spray onto her fur every few days, like after baths and while grooming her. This method will also help prevent ticks and other insects that can carry illnesses like heartworm.
10) Lemon Juice and Water Spray
All you need is a spray bottle, lemon juice, and water. Add 10-15 drops of lemon essential oil to a gallon of distilled water (to make sure it doesn’t get moldy) and mix in 4 tablespoons of organic lemon juice. Shake well before each use, then spray your cat or dog down (avoiding their face) and then allow them to shake off any excess spray. Do not use near an open flame, as many homemade flea sprays are flammable. You can also add some catnip to your mixture if you like!
11) Peppermint Oil Spray
Mix 8 ounces of water with 10 drops of peppermint oil. Spray your cat and house with a mixture of 1 cup of water with 30 drops of peppermint oil. Be sure to spray surfaces thoroughly and reapply after shampooing your cat or as needed to repel fleas. Be sure to check skin areas (like behind ears) often, and if irritation occurs, discontinue use. Store any unused solution in a cool, dark place away from children and pets.
12) Lavender And Water Spray
Mix a few drops of lavender essential oil with 2 cups of water in a spray bottle. Spray on your pet’s coat and around your home, mainly where your pet sleeps. This spray is safe to use on both cats and dogs, though you may want to test it first on a small area to be sure. (Source: A Few Drops of Lavender.)
13) Dish Soap, White Vinegar and Water Spray
Make a homemade flea spray by mixing 1 part dish soap with 3 parts water. Add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar to every cup of water used. Soak a washcloth in your concoction and wring it out well so that it doesn’t drop excessively when sprayed. Apply directly to affected areas, spraying from a distance (about 6 inches) so that you don’t accidentally get any on your cat. Let dry and then repeat once per day until fleas are gone, or you need to reapply after 2 or 3 days.
14) Super Simple Salt Solution
Start by pouring some salt into a spray bottle. Fill it below where you would typically put in water, and then add water up to that point. Next, shake it around to make sure all of your salt is dissolved, and then you’re ready to go! You can use any salt you have on hand, but try to avoid table salt if possible, as it contains additives that may irritate your cat’s skin. Some people even recommend adding a few drops of tea tree oil or lavender oil (or both) for extra flea-killing power.
15) Vinegar And Tea Tree Oil Spray
Cat fleas hate vinegar, making it a great ingredient in homemade flea sprays. In addition to repelling them, vinegar can also kill adult fleas and their eggs. To make a spray that contains both of these benefits, mix 1 cup of white vinegar with 10 drops of tea tree oil. (Please note: not all cats respond well to tea tree oil.) Then pour into a spray bottle and give your cat a good dousing every other day. Spray in areas where she spends most of her time and try to hit as many areas on her body as possible (like under her tail). This is because adult fleas typically congregate around their host’s head and neck regions while young ones are found closer to their lower body parts.
16) 1⁄4 cup rubbing alcohol
Pour enough rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle to fill it halfway. Fill with water and shake well. This will kill fleas and flea eggs but won’t work on ticks or mites. It’s an effective way to get rid of adult fleas and works immediately on contact. Be careful when using it, though—it can be harmful if applied to broken skin or eyes, so wear gloves when spraying cats with it (even if you have short fingernails). If a cat inhales too much, you might even want to wear a respirator.
17) 15 drops thyme essential oil
Thyme is a natural flea repellent. Thyme essential oil can repel mosquitoes, gnats, fleas, and ticks. Add 15 drops of thyme essential oil to 1 cup of water in a spray bottle. Spray your cat’s coat thoroughly with your homemade spray every 2 to 3 days. The scent of thyme will naturally deter ticks, fleas, and other pests from biting your cat and will effectively discourage them from coming back around searching for food or shelter. To further prevent infestation by these pesky insects, combine 10 drops each of eucalyptus, lemongrass, and citronella essential oils with 1 cup water; add 20 drops of cypress oil if you have cats that are frequently outdoors or often bitten by mosquitoes.
18) Baby Shampoo Spray
If you have a tiny kitten or puppy, baby shampoo might be your best bet. It’s mild enough to irritate sensitive skin, and it cleans well. Just use your favorite brand and spray liberally. Bonus: You can combine baby shampoo with water in a 1:1 ratio if you prefer a more liquid application instead of foam or gel.
19) A Homeopathic Treatment for Animals
Homeopathy is a complete system of medicine that treats patients by employing remedies that trigger a healing response. Homeopathic remedies contain nothing but water and are non-toxic. They can be taken in conventional medications without causing any drug interactions or side effects. Homeopathic remedies come in many forms, including tablets, tinctures, ointments, and sprays like those discussed below. There is no reason why your pet should suffer when safe and effective alternatives to conventional fleas treatments are available. Many homeopathic remedies are also safer than chemical pesticides because they use natural substances that cannot cause respiratory problems or allergies in pets.
20) Essential Oils Mixed
Add about 15 drops of eucalyptus, 20 drops of lavender, and 10 drops of rosemary to 1 cup of water in a spray bottle. Shake gently before use. Use on your cat once a week. (Avoiding getting it in their eyes.)
Here are 20 recipes that may come in handy when treating fleas on your cat. Remember that essential oils are very potent, so you want to use just a few drops in each recipe to keep them from harming your cat. If a particular scent is bothering your cat, choose another one; there are plenty of alternatives! Remember that these recipes should only be used on cats who do not have breathing issues (such as asthma) or skin allergies; if you’re unsure about your cat’s medical history, please talk to your vet before attempting any homemade remedies. Always be sure to store these solutions out of reach of children and pets!