What is diatomaceous earth and how does it control fleas?
Using diatomaceous earth is an effective way to control fleas using a non chemical method of flea control for your cat. So far so good, no chemicals.
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 you can use it on the dog too.
Note the little bit more effort part though. More about that in a minute.
You may choose to use diatomaceous earth in conjunction with other natural methods of flea control. Good idea!
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Diatomaceous earth is a naturally occurring, soft, siliceous sedimentary rock that is easily crumbled into a fine white to off-white powder. The powder can have an abrasive feel, similar to pumice powder.
It looks like powder but is actually a mineral dust.
Diatomaceous earth is made up of diatoms which are the fossilized remains of a type of algae. It is the diatoms that scratch away at the waxy layer of the exoskeleton of the flea.
Moisture from the body of the flea evaporates and the flea dehydrates and dies.
This video shows how to apply diatomaceous earth to your cat.
Use a squeeze bottle as shown. This ensures small amounts are puffed out as needed. This means less wastage and you and the cat will not be covered in or inhaling dust.
It does work, bear in mind that you will need to be vigilant about treating areas around the home plus places like the scratching post and other places the cat likes to hang out.
Cats that spend time outdoors should be treated weekly and indoors cats, monthly.
Buying diatomaceous earth online is convenient because the larger bags are pretty heavy and you can avoid the heavy lifting to and from the store by having it delivered.
Once you have the bag at home the product can be decanted into smaller more manageable containers.
Diatomaceous Earth - 100% Food Grade Products
All of the products reviewed here are 100% food grade. This is what you must use if you are using it for treating fleas on your cat.
Diatomaceous earth that is not food grade is a very effective insecticide however as this article is specifically about cats, only 100% food grade products will be reviewed.
This product is listed by OMRI and has been reviewed against organic product standards. It has no additives or contaminants and is packaged using stainless steel machinery. It is made from 99.9% pure silica.
To use, sprinkle in infested areas inside the house and in the yard. Also think about the nooks and crannies where the cat likes to hang out.
Treat the cat, following the directions in the video.
The fleas needs to crawl over the powder for it to work effectively. This is the reason sprinkling the powder on cat bedding, carpeted cat trees and so on is recommended.
While you are sprinkling the powder add a small amount to the kitty litter. For every pound of litter add approximately 3/4 of a cup of DE and distribute reasonably evenly. It will help absorb moisture and odors.
It can be dusty when applying so as a precautionary measure use a mask if using large quantities of the product. This applies to any diatomaceous earth product. Avoid using on windy days.
Although the bag looks like a plain paper bag in the image, it is actually thick and sturdy for repeated opening and closing.
This is a 10lb bag. It has no additives and as a bonus includes the powder duster which is actually in the bag with the diatomaceous earth.
The duster may settle near the bottom of the bag. The duster is handy when applying diatomaceous earth directly to the cat and also for puffing the dust into small spaces.
Harris donates 10% of its profits to the Etowah Valley Humane Society, a non profit organization that saves thousands of animal lives each year.
This product is OMRI listed which means that it has been reviewed against organic standards. It is mined in Nevada and packaged in Georgia.
This product is also listed with OMRI.
The composition of this diatomaceous earth is 89 - 95% amorphous silica. It contains less than one half of 1% of crystalline silica.
When applying sprinkle lightly but evenly. It is convenient to use an applicator when using for fleas inside so that the DE can be puffed into harder to reach places.
When spreading in the yard it is most efficient to roughly map out a grid in the area you are treating to make sure the coverage is even. An applicator scoop makes it easier to spread the product in the yard.
This product is 100% diatomaceous earth and is food grade.
Nature’s Wisdom report that this product is sourced from a food grade deposit that has pure water. The diatoms (that make up diatomaceous earth ) are harder from pure water supplies than ones found where the water supply is salt water.
Diatomaceous Earth treats many other types of troublesome bugs, plus bed bugs in addition to fleas. As mentioned earlier, this is like a fine powder so be sure to empty the filter of the vacuum cleaner regularly when using this product as the fine powder may clog the filter.
This product is in a plastic container as pictured.
The product also comes in a plastic bag so there are refill options or you may prefer to buy in a plastic bag and recant into your own container.
This handy little product makes spreading diatomaceous earth so much easier.
Simply fill with powder and it is ready to use.
Apply gentle pressure when squeezing and the product will puff out. The long nozzle means that you can get into all those tricky spots that are difficult to reach.
The powder will go where you want it to go with this product.
If it starts to clump just turn upside down and give a little shake.
The amount of pressure you give when squeezing will affect the amount of powder puffing out. Experiment with different pressures to get it just right for your needs.
There is an applicator scoop which is suitable for treating larger areas like the yard.
In addition to using diatomaceous earth on your cat to control fleas you can also use diatomaceous earth in your home to get rid of fleas.
Sprinkle the dust lightly in all the places your kitty likes to hang out and don’t forget all the nooks and crannies.
Don't forget to dust the scratching post because as this is covered in carpet it will be a lovely home for fleas. Work the dust into the carpet with a brush. Vacuum the dust approximately 12-24 hours later and reapply as necessary.
Be mindful of the fact that diatomaceous earth can be hard on a domestic vacuum cleaner so be sure to check the filter and vacuum small areas at a time.
It is non toxic to humans (food grade diatomaceous earth) however it is still a dust and it is advisable to take a normal amount of care to ensure that you are not breathing in volumes of dust.
This is a quality product. 93% percent of people on Chewy would recommend this product. You can read reviews 0n Chewy here. This product is mined, filtered and packaged in the USA.
Diatomaceous Earth - 100% Food Grade Products
What else is available for treating fleas on cats? You might find these articles helpful.
More natural flea treatment choices with no chemicals.
Easy to apply, effective and lasts for thirty days. Watch the video showing how to apply the drops.
The active ingredients in this flea collar are released slowly and over time hence the 8 month time frame for repelling and killing fleas and ticks.
Hello! I am Rebecca Parker, the content editor of this site. This is my kitty cat in his heyday. He now has diabetes which means twice daily injections and much to his dismay, no more snacking in between meals. This gorgeous and very loved kitty is sadly now deceased, old age caught up with him.