Can I Rub Lemon Water On My Pets To Get Rid Of Fleas?

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Fleas may be tiny, but the discomfort and health issues these blood-sucking parasites can cause are excruciating enough to have you try every way to get rid of them. While chemical remedies against fleas exist, many pet owners today seek natural remedies to combat flea infestations.

If you have been looking for a natural remedy to combat fleas in your pets, you may have encountered lemon water. It is easy and cheap to make, but how effective is it? Find out whether you can rub lemon water on your pets to get rid of fleas below.

Can I Rub Lemon Water On My Pets To Get Rid Of Fleas?

can i rub lemon water on my pets to get rid of fleas


Yes, you can rub lemon water on your pets to get rid of fleas, but only if you want to repel them. Lemon water doesn’t have insecticidal properties, so it will not kill the fleas on your pets.

The idea behind using lemon water is that the acidity and citrus scent of lemons are repulsive to fleas, making them less likely to stay on or bite your pet. The acidity of lemon water is believed to deter fleas and other insects.

In addition, some natural compounds found in lemon, such as limonene and citronella, have insect-repelling properties. These natural repellents can help keep fleas at bay when you apply lemon water to your pet’s fur or as a rinse during a bath.

Apart from the flea deterrent properties in lemon water, consider using it on your pets because it is generally considered safe for pets if you dilute and use it in moderation. Unlike some chemical flea treatments, your pets are less likely to suffer adverse reactions or toxicity from lemon water.

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Also, it is an appealing option if you’re looking for budget-friendly flea control solutions. Lemon water is readily available, affordable, and easy to prepare at home.

Moreover, lemon water’s pleasant, fresh citrus scent helps mask pet odors, making your pet and living spaces more enjoyable.

How To Make Lemon Spray For Fleas

How to make lemon spray for fleas


As mentioned earlier, preparing a lemon spray is pretty straightforward. You just need to gather supplies and prepare the treatment per the steps below.


  • 2-3 fresh lemons
  • 2 cups of water
  • A spray bottle


a) Slice the Lemons

Start by slicing 2-3 fresh lemons into thin rounds.

b) Boil the Water

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Boiling the water helps to release the lemon’s natural oils and scent more effectively.

c) Steep the Lemons

Once the water has reached a rolling boil, remove it from the heat, then add the lemon slices to the hot water.

d) Let It Cool

Allow the lemon slices to steep in the hot water for several hours or, ideally, overnight. This allows the water to absorb the lemon’s aroma and natural compounds.

e) Strain the Lemon Water

After steeping, strain the lemon water to remove the lemon slices and any debris. You should now have a lemon-infused water solution.

f) Transfer to a Spray Bottle

Pour the lemon-infused water into the spray bottle. If necessary, use a funnel. Also, the spray bottle should be clean and free from any residues of chemicals or previous substances.

How To Use Lemon Spray For Fleas

How To Use Lemon Spray For Fleas


Your lemon water spray is ready, so it is time to spray it on your pet to repel fleas. Here is how to do so:

i) Patch Test

Before you apply the lemon spray to your pet’s whole body, do a patch test. Spray a small amount of the solution on a discrete part of your pet’s skin (such as the back of the neck) and wait 24 hours to see if your pet develops adverse reactions or skin sensitivities.

ii) Spray on Your Pet’s Fur

If the patch test goes well and your pet doesn’t suffer any adverse reactions, proceed to apply the lemon spray to your pet’s fur. Here’s how to do it:

  • Hold the spray bottle at a distance from your pet, typically about 6-8 inches (15-20 cm).
  • Lightly mist the lemon spray over your pet’s fur, focusing on parts where fleas often hide, like the tail base, back, and neck.
  • Avoid spraying the lemon solution directly into your pet’s nose, eyes, mouth, and ears. Be careful not to saturate the fur; a light mist is sufficient.

iii) Massage or Sponge Application (Optional)

If your pet is comfortable with it, gently massage the lemon spray into their fur using your hands or a clean cloth or sponge. This will help distribute the lemon scent and natural oils throughout the fur.

iv) Reapply as Needed

Lemon spray’s effectiveness diminishes over time, so you may need to reapply this treatment. You can do so after every few days or weekly. How often you apply it depends on various factors, including your pet’s exposure to fleas and the outdoor environment.

v) Treat Living Areas

In addition to applying the lemon spray to your pet, consider spraying it in areas where your pet spends time indoors, such as their bedding, favorite resting spots, and carpets. Fleas can infest these areas as well.

Also, consider adding some lemon water to your pet shampoo. This ensures the lemon scent lingers on your pet fur, thus helping keep fleas at bay. However, use lemon water-infused pet shampoo carefully, making sure it doesn’t get into or near the eyes of your pet.

vi) Monitor for Adverse Reactions

Once you finish applying the treatment, keep a close eye on your pet for any signs of irritation, discomfort, or adverse reactions to the lemon spray. If any issues arise, discontinue use immediately.

Important Considerations

  • Lemon spray is primarily a preventive measure, so it doesn’t completely protect against fleas. While lemon water can deter fleas to some extent, it is unlikely to provide complete protection or eliminate an existing infestation. Therefore, combine this natural flea repellent with other flea control methods.
  • If your pet has an existing flea infestation, lemon spray alone is unlikely to provide effective treatment. Therefore, consult your veterinarian for appropriate flea treatment options.


  • Lemon spray is not a substitute for professional veterinary care or commercial flea treatments, especially in severe flea infestations.
  • If your pet continues to experience flea problems despite using lemon spray, explore more robust flea control measures and consult your veterinarian for guidance.
  • Reapply the lemon spray regularly because its effectiveness can diminish over time.
  • Remember that the citric acid in lemon water can irritate some pets with sensitive skin, hence the importance of a patch test. In addition, consult your veterinarian before using any natural remedies, especially if your pet has known allergies or sensitivities.


  • Lemon water does not address flea eggs and larvae, so you will need to use a different method to eliminate them. Effective strategies include steam cleaning, regular vacuuming, and Diatomaceous Earth.
  • Monitor your pet for signs of discomfort or irritation, and discontinue use if adverse reactions occur.
Final Remarks

Lemon water may be effective in repelling fleas on your pets, but you cannot rely on it as a sole flea control method, especially if your pet is already infested with fleas.

Instead, consider using lemon water alongside proven commercial or natural treatments and diligent environmental control. Also, before using lemon water to get rid of fleas, make sure your pet is not allergic to it.

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