Diatomaceous Earth does not work!!

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I'm the boss!
Barked: Sun Sep 30, '07 5:27pm PST 
Hi all!
I was told about Diatomaceous Earth to kill fleas on the dog, in the yard, and in the house. Well I've been using it for about a month - month1/2 now and I've still been seeing fleas. And spiders!! eww! But this stuff was supposed to kill all bugs including fleas on contact. And I've even put some DE in a bottle and caught some fleas and spiders and put them in the bottle. Well they would just crawl around for a day or two... and appeared to die from lack of food and/or water.

This is me- ignoring you!
Barked: Sun Sep 30, '07 5:56pm PST 
Next time, try adding food and water to your experiment to see if they die or not within a day or two. I'd be interested in your findings!

I've heard many accounts that food grade DE does work. However, the results may not be immediate as with the use of chemicals. There may also be a placebo effect. That's why I think your experiment is interesting.

Using natural remedies my be more labor intensive, e.g. more vacuuming, more spraying, etc. There is no perfect solution. One just has to decide whether the dangers of using chemical agents is worth the risk or if natural remedies take too long or are too much work.

You are to be commended for at least trying alternative ways to manage fleas that doesn't destroy our environment. way to go

A Doggie Scholar
Barked: Sun Sep 30, '07 6:01pm PST 
Diatomaceous Earth do not kill bugs on contact. Only strong pesticides can do that as they are toxic poisonous chemicals smile

The way diatomaceous earth works is by its absorptive properties. Over time, it will dehydrate the bugs and will either repel them by their sheer unpleasantness or kill them due to dehydration.


Give me your- face so I can- lick it!
Barked: Sun Sep 30, '07 6:10pm PST 
I was just about to go out and buy some of this stuff for the ant problem I'm having right now. I then read that it would also kill fleas, roaches and other pests...all of which have paid some visits recently. I'd be really interested in your findings if you would be able to do the little experiment that Tikka talked about, as I was really excited about getting this stuff.

Look forward to hearing from you!

I'm a- Wrockasaurus- Rex!
Barked: Sun Sep 30, '07 8:41pm PST 
We us DE as part of a mult-pronged pest control system. We don't have a flea problem, however we have a HORRIBLE tick problem. We do not use Frontline or Advantage. Our vet does not reccomend their use in multi-dog households - too easy to poison each other....

Here is our flea & tick control system. (which actually works pretty well)
1) Capstar is our "flea drug" of choice. It doesn't protect but it kills instantly.
2)DE is kept under our dogs crates and beds and any areas where bugs might hide.
3)Our dogs don't spend much time in the yard... Our cat does not go out at all. Whatever is out there, will come inside on the dogs & cats. We don't allow neighbors dogs in our yard.
4)We sprinkle DE down in our dog's "potty yard"
5)All dogs wear a PrevenTick collar.

If we DO see parasites we follow this process
1) Reapply DE under crates.
2) Flea bomb the house
3) Give CapStar immediately and then onc a week for three doses total.
4) add fresh minced garlic to the food for a few weeks.

I'm very allergic to fleas and fortunately, we almost NEVER see them with this approach. DE is great as part of a prevention plan but it's not going to give you the quick kill that a pesticide would.
Maggie CTL1 RE CGC

Bar Hoppin'
Barked: Sun Sep 30, '07 10:35pm PST 
The only thing I want to warn against DE is that if inhaled it will coat the inside of your lungs...be sure to wear a mask when dumping & vacuuming. We use this stuff to coat pool filters (I'm talking about a pool w/200,000 gallons of water so we use this regularly). Just remember to keep the pets out of the room until it settles & protect yourself.
Sirius- Padfoot- Black

Too clever for- Mom's own good!- :)
Barked: Mon Oct 1, '07 8:12am PST 
Remember to only use food grade DE. Pool grade has additives that will harm your dog if he ingests it.
It does work. It just doesn't work instantly. I've used it for over a year and haven't seen a flea in the house, or any other bugs. I put it in the garbage cans and it kills maggots, as well. It doesn't just dry them out, it cuts them open first.
I also use it as a flea powder on my dogs, being very careful that they (or I) don't breathe it in while I'm applying it!

Have a Nice Day!
Barked: Mon Oct 1, '07 8:54am PST 
I'm lucky enough to not have a flea or tick problem with the pup, but I live in NYC and we have a city-wide ROACH problem!! laugh out loud It's what I use to control the pesties coming into my apt, and I have to tell ya, that stuff works for me! I started seeing a few little roaches scurrying around about two months ago - prolly one every two days or so. I thought, uhoh, you see one, you'll see 5000 in a week or so. So I dusted DE in the cracks where I thought they would be coming up - through the pipes and the minute cracks in a century old building. Presto chango! I've only seen one in the last three weeks. I have to be diligent about the dusting, but I typically use it in areas where it's impossible to vacuum anyway - behind cabinets, down pipes, and such.

And yeah pool grade DE has additives that are harmful. Food grade can be ingested.

Vinegar is a great repellent. It makes your skin acidic, and distasteful to bugs. It's also non suppressive if you're using classical homeopathic remedies.

Proud to be a- kitchen wolf!!!
Barked: Mon Oct 1, '07 10:39am PST 
It's always worked for me! I also have to say that I unfortunately came across DE after we'd already moved to a climate where fleas and ticks aren't a super-nuisance, but when ants decided that my compost-primed landscaping plastic covered garden beds were the perfect place to winter, and I found their ant mega-metropolis the following spring the DE worked wonders.

I think it's important to know exactly what it is and how it works to be able to get the results you want. Simply put, it works mechanically not chemically. It does not "kill ON contact", but kills THROUGH contact!

Edited by author Mon Oct 1, '07 10:40am PST


I'm too cool for- a motto
Barked: Mon Oct 1, '07 1:07pm PST 
DE basically causes death via dehydration. The silicate shells cause microscopic lacerations all over the pest and then quickly absorbs the body fluid. This is not an instant solution, it is something that will continue to work over time.

We had a problem with earwigs in our basement, so I spread DE all around the foundation of the house. The problem cleared up within a week.

Pool DE should NEVER be used around people or pets, always use FOOD GRADE DE.
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