Parasitic diseases

Home Remedies to Treat Dogs for Head Lice

Amy McCready
By Amy McCready, Animal rights journalist. April 25, 2017
Home Remedies to Treat Dogs for Head Lice

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If your dog is constantly and excessively itching and they are restless, you should examine them immediately. Upon examination you may notice the presence of tiny, slow-moving, gray flat-shaped parasites. Yes, unfortunately dogs can get head lice.

First, you should know two things. These lice will not infect people or any other pet other than dogs - they are unique to dogs. Secondly, you must treat dog lice as soon as possible, to avoid complications. If you would rather use a more natural treatment compared to classic insecticides, keep reading. AnimalWised will show you the best home remedies to treat dogs for head lice.

You may also be interested in: Home Remedies for Intestinal Parasites in Cats


  1. When should we use home remedies for head lice in dogs?
  2. Home remedies to treat head lice in dogs
  3. Things to take into consideration

When should we use home remedies for head lice in dogs?

Head lice, also called nits, are external parasites that feed on the blood of their hosts and may carry some diseases. There are three types of lice that can affect a dog: Heterodoxus spiniger, Linognathus setosus and Trichodectes canis.

So, how do dogs get head lice? Your dog may have become infested after playing with another dog with lice. Or perhaps they were brushed with a contaminated comb.

Natural home remedies are a good alternative for treating lice in dogs whenever the infestation is not serious. It is indeed true that there are many natural substances that will reduce the parasite population. However, it will be very difficult to eradicate them altogether, naturally.

How to assess if an infestation is serious

The most appropriate method is to go to the vet to know exactly if you have enough time to apply the natural remedies and observe their effectiveness. Other ways to check this is through a simple inspection of the hair. If you observe many parasites, areas without hair or wounds due to excessive itching, it is not a good idea to use home remedies.

In severe cases, we should turn to a specialist and follow the dog lice treatment of a commercial product. They will help us get rid of the lice completely and protect our dog in the future.

Home Remedies to Treat Dogs for Head Lice - When should we use home remedies for head lice in dogs?

Home remedies to treat head lice in dogs

Some of the home treatments for dog lice are the same ones used to treat fleas with home remedies (as with conventional insecticides). These have anti-parasitic and antiseptic properties. The most suitable for treating lice are as follows:

  • Tea tree essential oil: Tea tree is very suitable due to its great antibacterial, anti-parasitic and antiseptic ability. It will help the prevention of topical infections due to excessive itching. In this case it is most appropriate to mix 5 drops of oil with the dog's usual shampoo. You can repeat this application once a week.
  • Citronella Infusion Massages: Citronella is an excellent repellent plant due to all the components it contains. To perform the massages, you should add a handful of fresh citronella in half a pint of boiling water. Turn off the heat and let it stand until cool. Then filter and soak the solution on a cotton pad, applying it over the dog's hair and paying attention to the affected areas.
  • Lavender essential oil: Lavender is very suitable due to its antiseptic ability and can be applied directly on the skin - if there are no open wounds. Add 5 drops onto a cotton pad and apply to the affected areas. If there are wounds it is preferable to add these 5 drops to the dog's usual shampoo.
  • Garlic: Although it is widely considered to be one of the most toxic foods for our dogs, garlic is one of the most suitable remedies for deworming our pets. It is recommended to crush some garlic into their food daily. For large dogs, a clove of garlic is recommended. For small dogs, half a clove will do. These doses are not toxic for your dog. This is stated in Dogs Naturally Magazine's veterinary study " Garlic: Friend or Foe? " in April 2014.
  • Artemisia: This medicinal plant contains essential oils that are effective against lice. This is due to their insecticidal action. It will be necessary to infuse artemisia, then soak this solution on a cotton pad and apply it daily to the affected areas.

It is not recommended to use these home remedies at the same time. In fact, the most appropriate way would be to use the garlic as an internal application and only one of the other methods externally.

Head lice will continue to hatch over 2 to 3 weeks. It is vital that you wash your dog daily in order to remove all the lice.

Home Remedies to Treat Dogs for Head Lice - Home remedies to treat head lice in dogs

Things to take into consideration

Generally, we believe that a natural remedy is an innocuous and necessary remedy.Although its risks are minimal, it is fundamental that you consult your vet beforehand in the following cases:

  • Your dog is still in the puppy stage
  • Your dog is old
  • They have any underlying disease
  • They are taking some medication

In the presence of these cases, natural remedies can cause some problems. Regardless of whether the problem is mild or severe, it should be prevented. In any case, and as already explained, the ideal method is to use a commercial product to treat more serious cases.
Do not forget that prevention is essential to prevent your dog from ever suffering an infestation of lice or any other parasite. So, it is convenient to prepare a deworming schedule for your dog.

This article is purely informative. AnimalWised does not have the authority to prescribe any veterinary treatment or create a diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian if they are suffering from any condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to Home Remedies to Treat Dogs for Head Lice, we recommend you visit our Parasitic diseases category.

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Home Remedies to Treat Dogs for Head Lice