Insects adore both humans and dogs, and let’s face it: it’s not the adoration we want. Being an intelligent species, humans always somehow manage to escape. But our poor doggies still fall prey to insects that latch onto them, bite them, and ultimately infect them. These infections can sometimes be exceptionally severe, causing lethal complications. For such cases, dog fly repellents act as an antidote by preventing the insects from biting our dogs.
In this article, we’ll discuss how we can pick the best fly repellents for dogs. Additionally, we’ll be reviewing ten fantastic choices for these repellents too. Get your pup together – let’s get rolling!
What to Look For in Fly Repellents For Dogs
To understand what makes a fly repellent great, we have to understand what to look for in fly repellents, what are their types and contents, and of course, their specific effects. This understanding would then help us assess our needs better.
All-Natural or Organic Sprays
All-natural and organic sprays contain essential oils like Basil, Rosemary, Lavender, Lemongrass, and Citronella that are non-toxic. Their non-toxicity helps prevent pesticide poisoning in dogs while you’re applying it on them – something that’s likely to occur with chemical/inorganic ones.
These oil-based natural fly repellent sprays also help you groom and trim your dog’s coat and sometimes adding a lovely scent as well.
Second to sprays are pesticides that not just repel but also kill insects. Pesticides deal with a higher level of threats such as ticks and lice, dwelling deep in the dog’s coat.
However, just like we mentioned before, pesticides contain toxic elements that your dogs must not consume. If organic sprays aren’t available and you’re using pesticides, keep an eye out for your dog’s behavior – vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive drooling are all pesticide poisoning symptoms.
Fly repellent ointments (creams, gels, lotions, etc.) are balms (either organic or inorganic) that you apply to the dog’s coat as a fly preventative measure. In general, ointments last much longer as they absorb into the dog’s skin, unlike sprays which the air mostly dries off.
Your pup’s wound is a McMeal for flies, and ointments are best at preventing them from accessing it, thus avoiding infections.
Little to No Amount of DEET
While DEET is the most efficient bug spray ingredient, it’s also the most damaging for animals. Ensure that the repellent that you’re getting for your pet doesn’t contain DEET at all to avoid Toxicosis.
If you use a repellent for yourself at home that contains DEET, try to find alternatives as no matter if it’s you or your pet, DEET is dangerous for all.
10 Best Fly Repellents for Dogs
In the following dog fly repellent list, we’ll be talking about ten top-of-the-line products known for their effectiveness in the fight against flies.
1. Miracle Coat No Fly Zone for Dogs
Miracle Coat’s “No Fly Zone” is as impressive a product as its name. This spray offers a thorough defense by using clove, grass, and citronella oils to repel insects such as flies.
Oatmeal and Vitamin E are this non-toxic spray’s key ingredients that are excellent for dog skin and coats. There’s 12 oz. of liquid in the bottle, and one dose lasts around 2-5 hours, giving you and your dog a pleasant fly-less time outdoors.
Overall impressively effective, this fly repellent does its job well. However, the only thing that keeps it from crowning itself as the king is that it doesn’t last as long.
2. Absorbine UltraShield Green Fly Spray
Though it’s originally for horses, Absorbine’s UltraShield Green is a fantastic choice for dogs as its formula is oil and water-based. While most fly repellents are hazardous to some extent, UltraShield Green is eco-safe, minimizing any risks endangering you or your family.
Its ingredients are seven essential botanical oils (thyme, cedarwood, lemongrass, rosemary, citronella, and clove) that retain their smell in this spray, eventually carrying it to your canine’s coat. The bottle contains 32 oz. of the fluid, and for best results, you can use it every couple of hours.
Noticeably effective, the UltraShield Green is among the natural fly repellents to go for.
3. Farnam Bronco e Equine Fly Spray
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If you’re fur-tunate enough to have used Farnam dog fly repellents before, you already know it’s one of the most helpful fly repellents and insecticides on the market. Working well for both dogs and horses, Farnam’s Bronco has a water-based formula and citronella scent.
Though it smells good, beware that your pup doesn’t consume it in any way as it’s a pesticide. If your dog is habitual of licking itself, it would be better to avoid it.
Now, using this citronella spray for dogs is both good and not-so-good. Good because it effectively repels all flies such as ticks, gnats, mosquitoes, etc., and not-so-good because dogs aren’t a fan of citronella’s scent. As far as functionality is concerned, Farnam’s Bronco does its repulsion job well.
4. Farnam Swat Clear Fly Repellent Ointment
We’re not yet done with Farnam. Another sweet product from this brand is the Swat Clear fly repellent ointment that protects pups against flies pretty well. Entirely inorganic compounds like Pyrethrins and Piperonyl Butoxide make up this ointment, which is why it lasts long hours.
When repelling insects and flies from wounds, ointments are most effective. However, you should not apply it directly over an open cut – it might cause the wound to burn. And since it’s a pesticide, prevent your dog from licking its fur to avoid pesticide poisoning.
Overall excellent, Farnam’s Swat Clear is a clever hack against flies of all sorts.
5. Farnam Flys Off Fly Repellent Ointment
Do you see Farnam’s expertise on the repellent matter? The third product in a row, Flys Off ointment from Farnam, uses a very similar formulation as the Swat Clear ointment, so this is an alternative if one of both isn’t available.
With 7 oz. of this excellent chemical compound, it kills house, stable, face, and horn flies instantly. But bear in mind that it isn’t for humans. After applying it to your dog, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly.
And remember, this is also among pesticides for dogs that you shouldn’t apply directly on the wound to prevent flies. All in all, it’s a must-have in summers when flies are in their full swing as it’s highly rated for its effectiveness.
6. Flys-Off Insect Repellent for Dogs & Cats
Excellence over excellence, the Flys-Off repellent spray is yet another promising product by Farnam. With a reputation of lasting for days on end, this product is a smarter investment to make than others.
Great for both dogs and cats, this inorganic, chemical spray will serve you a 2-in-1 purpose if you own both domestic fur babies. Additionally, it works incredibly well over surfaces, too – you can spray it on your dog’s kennel or house to prevent flies from having fun.
The only catch is that it’s rated for lasting up to 9 days yet lasts half that time. But when you compare it to other products that last a few hours, it’s a better way to go.
7. K9 Advantix II Flea and Tick Prevention
An exceptional product on the list, K9 Advantix II is a topical cream that guards your pup against flies for around 30 days. The best thing is that it doesn’t rely on physical contact with the flies to kill them.
Plus, the fact that it’s odorless makes it so much more comfortable to use for both you and your dog – you won’t have to worry about dogs not liking its scent.
Although it is a flea and tick prevention product, one of its features is to repel and kill biting flies. It claims that it’s a “flea and tick prevention” ointment, but it goes on to eradicate them. If that works for you, K9 Advantix II is a worthy and long-lasting investment. Note: it doesn’t start working until the first 24 hours are over, so be sure to wait after application.
8. Farnam Roll-On Fly Repellent
Another Farnam masterpiece, yet this time as a roll-on offering a more measured, easier, and concentrated application. Similar to other Farnam products, it’s a chemical solution that’s equally effective and impressive.
A plus point of using this roll-on is that you don’t come into contact with the 2 oz of fluid present in the bottle. Sprays and ointments have a higher chance of interacting with you or your clothes, which can be damaging for you and your other pets (like cats) if any.
While it’s a bit non-conventional, it’s mostly a hit or miss – the chances are that either your pooch will love it or your pooch will hate it due to its different application. Remember not to apply it on wounds and irritated skin patches of your dog and to read the instructions manual before using it thoroughly.
9. DURVET FLY 003-1020 698903 Power Fly Spray
Durvet’s Power Fly Spray is a fly repellent that deserves all praises. With its water-based citronella scent, it does a promising job at repelling mosquitoes from the dog’s coat.
With a pyrethrin chemical composition, you should use this spray on pups older than three months and thoroughly spray the coat by ruffling the hair. You can also use Durvet’s Power Fly spray for disinfecting your pup’s kennel or bed – a diverse functionality.
On the whole, it’s a smart purchase to make. But remember that you should not use it on a dog’s eyes or other sensitive parts like open wounds to avoid further damaging it. Pro Tip: It contains citronella that some dogs don’t like, so here’s what you can do to prevent wasting your investment: make your canine smell the citronella oil at home. If they like it, get one. If they don’t, then you can go with other options.
10. Yaya Organics Tick Ban
At the end of this dog fly repellents review, we have Yaya Organics’ Tick Ban, a DEET-free, family friend, and all-organic repellent for your pets.
Containing cedarwood, geranium, peppermint, and thyme oils, this dog fly repellent has zero citronella oil, which’s terrific for your pets whether they have any issues with it or not. And although it’s branded as a tick product, it also prevents black flies, gnats, and other bugs.
Atop every other benefit, Yaya Organics’ Tick Ban is perfect for personal use as well. For people and dogs with sensitive skin, this repellent can be refreshing and fly-preventive.
Homemade Alternatives for Fly Repellents
DIY fly repellents for dogs are a reality not many people are aware of – yes, using household essential oils, you can make natural fly repellents at home. If it’s that easy, then why do brands exist, you ask? That’s because most people think it’s a complicated task and that chemical formulas are the only way around fly prevention.
So what should you do? You should do-it-yourself: grab a spray bottle full of water and add a few essential oil droplets – and voila, you have your homemade fly repellent for dogs ready. Do not, however, use it without enough research about either your dog or the oil in question, as they can be toxic for dogs and most domestic pets. The best practice here would be to consult a vet.
So, which oil to go with? Though that depends on your vet’s recommendation, nature recommends oils such as basil, eucalyptus, and bergamot as its best fly repellents, so you don’t have to take our word for it. And if you don’t have these essential oils – you can go for the water-vinegar alternative just as quickly. Simply mix both equally and well and pour the solution in a spray bottle – you’ll have an excellent DIY dog fly repellent ready.
Fly Repellents for Dogs: FAQ
We hope the reviews above helped you. You must have some questions about dogs, flies, and fly repellents. Let’s try to answer them all.
Naturally, flies are attracted to dogs because of their coats, which are not as clean as, generally, people perceive them to be. Though fly bites aren’t harmful, they can cause skin irritation, leading to your canine scratching it continuously.
Moreover, the presence of flies itself is annoying and irritating for both your dog and you. They give an unpleasant and unclean vibe that puts off everyone who likes cleanliness. Flies are active during the day, so it’s a smart practice to keep your dog indoors at this time. A smarter approach is to use fly repellents for dogs and keep flies away at all times.
Flies can transmit diseases like malaria and dengue as they are dirty, but they’re unlikely to affect your dog. The only animals – other than humans – known for catching dengue are monkeys.
However, this doesn’t mean you can stop worrying. These flies carrying diseases can infect you and your family, while flies, in general, can cause itching, redness of skin, bumps, or wounds on your dog’s skin.
The process for administering fly repellents depends on the type of product in question. If you’re using a spray, you would have to spray it on your dog from a few inches away. If you’re using ointments, you’ll have to apply them using your hands.
You also have the option of using roll-ons, where you’ll apply them on your pooch directly by rubbing it on their body. Though their main goal is the same, these three different types have different levels of effectiveness.
Your product is your best guide on the frequency at which you should apply it to your dog. Fly repellent sprays like Absorbine’s UltraShield last a few hours only, yet ointments like K9 Advantix II stay for a whole month – it depends on the product you’re using.
Though brands claim that one application would last 24 hours and that you don’t need to apply the product frequently, it’s better to go with your assessment. Observe when the repellent is not working anymore and then re-apply. Also, brands don’t mention everything on the product container, so refer to the instruction manual inside the box. You can find some fly repellent management tips here.
Pesticides or repellents work by directly affecting the insect’s senses of taste, smell, and often sight as well, to disable them from finding us or our dogs – their hosts.
Lemon eucalyptus, picaridin, and DEET are some typical ingredients of these pesticides. While DEET and picaridin are excellent for human use, you should not use them on your dogs as they can cause severe health complications.
Fly repellents for dogs are essential grooming and health care tools. Are they optional? That depends on your priorities: do you prioritize your dog’s health and hygiene? Do you care that there’s no infestation around your house? If you do, then fly repellents should be your go-to option. And sure, it’s not compulsory to go with branded products (we recommend K9 Advantix II, in case you’re interested). Just grab essential oils from your kitchen counter, add a few drops to a water bottle and you’re good to go with your natural and organic fly spray.