Dawn Dish Soap For Fleas?

Dawn Dish Soap For Fleas?

Posted by RJewel on Feb 09, 2018

Why Dish Detergent Is Not Safe for Dogs

Recently someone posted on our facebook group about bathing a dog in dawn dish soap for fleas. I thought I’d mention this because I’ve seen this topic come up before about using dish soap to get rid of fleas.

I looked into it further to find many posts saying it was a natural pet care solution for flea control! Oh my....No!

Yes it is used to get oil out, kill fleas and remove odours etc. But it is far from natural in fact it is filled with chemicals and is NOT safe to use on pets. Yes, even if your vet tells you it is safe or even if other people do it all the time with no ill effects. (side effects are not immediate with these types of chemicals, in most cases- it is long term health concerns over time that is the issue) 

It is about as safe as chemical pesticides in flea sprays, over the counter flea collars, trifexis type chewables etc. and the worse kind of chemical laden over the counter cheap shampoos. Shampoos I'd never use on my own head and certainly never on my fur kids. ( if you use any of these then you are compromising your pet's long term health and lowering their immunity) 

The purpose of using Dawn dish soap on wildlife after an oil spill is because they need to the oil removed from their bodies as quickly as possible. Otherwise their skin cannot breathe and they will die. Dawn soap is so effective at removing oil because the chemicals in it are caustic and cut through anything basically. No wonder it kills fleas on contact.

Dawn has been known to remove the smell of skunk . A skunk's odoriferous spray has an oily substance in it that adheres to a dog's fur and skin – Dawn breaks it up, helping us to remove the majority of the spray quickly.

How come it can deal with this two very difficult situations?

The theme here is that dawn dish detergent is made with very strong chemicals that are caustic and harmful, even to humans- one of it’s ‘hidden’ ingredients which include a very harsh formaldehyde; it has to be super potent to get the grease out-which makes too harsh for sensitive skin of dogs.

Plus all the added synthetic fragrances and unnatural dyes, neither which are healthy or natural for pets.

The Environmental Working Group, known as the EWG which empowers people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment, gave Dawn dish soap a 'D' grade because it has methylisothiazolinone in it.

Which is a huge concern regarding aquatic toxicity; as well as some concern regarding skin irritations, allergies and skin damage.

Sounds great for dogs, right? Not! 

Dawn also contains 1 4-dioxane which has become a problem as a groundwater contaminant.

Another fact about Dawn soap - it is on the Mayo Clinic avoid list of household chemicals due to it containing many contaminates, including quanterium 15 which produces formaldehyde when contacts water.

Quanternium-15 is a preservative and a caustic chemical anti-microbial and a severe cause of dermatitis.

It is also a teratrogen (causes birth defects in animals)

According to some experts, This ingredient is generally safe, BUT will  eventually break down in the bottle, or tube, or on the skin to release formaldehyde for which the evidence of its cancer causing properties is very real.

Of course it kills fleas! Maybe killing skin cells too.

Other Ingredients in Dawn dish soap :dawnsoapforfleas.png

  • sodium lauryl sulfate
  • sodium laurethsulfate
  • c12-14-16 dimethyl amine oxide
  • SD alcohol
  • sodium chloride
  • PPG-26, pei-14 PEG-10/PPG-7 copolymer
  • cyclohexanediamine
  • phenoxyethanol
  • magnesium chloride
  • methylisothiazolinone
  • Synthetic fragrance
  • yellow 5
  • blue 1

Why ever even consider putting this totally un-natural product on your beloved pets? 

There are much safer choices for shampoos to kill fleas on dogs. Why using dawn dishsoap is passed around as some kind of natural flea treatment is beyond me.

It is definetely as harmful if not more than any chemical pesticide you might use on your dog or cat. 


Don’t you agree after seeing what is in it?

Here is one gentle and natural flea control shampoo you can use instead:

Dr. Bronners peppermint soap cut 1/3 water, 1/3 Dr. Bronners and 1/3  apple cider vinegar- this would be just as effective and totally safe, but keep out of precious little eyes.

(You can get Dr. Bronners at Trader Joe’s or any Health food store)

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