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Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
07-06-2012, 02:50 AM, (This post was last modified: 07-06-2012, 02:50 AM by writer811.)
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writer811 Offline
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Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
My sister has a dog that she keeps outdoors. Lately I've noticed that flies seem to be biting him a lot. His nose and ears are the places where he gets bitten the most. He can usually take care of his nose by himself by rubbing it in the dirt (Lots of animals do this in the wild to get rid of flies) but his ears remain vulnerable. They are always bleeding and scabbed from the high concentration of flies that bite. I've tried several things to get rid of them, such as apple cider vinegar and petroleum jelly but nothing seems to be working. Can anyone help me out?
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07-12-2012, 05:12 PM,
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Ram Offline
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
Maybe your sister should take the dog indoor?
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07-12-2012, 05:45 PM, (This post was last modified: 07-12-2012, 05:45 PM by TreeClimber.)
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
The poor dog must be miserable. It sounds like you've got fleas in the dirt that need to be taken care of. I've used nematodes in the past to get rid of fleas in the yard. It will take a few weeks for them to break the cycle though. I've heard that eucalyptus leaves spread around an area will deter fleas, too.

You really need to get rid of the fleas and the eggs on the dog. As long as you have live fleas the dog will be bitten.

I am not sure where you are located so I don't know if these products are available where you live. However, I swear by Advantage Flea Control. I've used Frontline and Frontline Plus, but I don't get the same results. Other people have great results with the Frontline Products. I usually notice a difference with my dog after 3-4 days when I've applied Advantage.

Also, get a flea comb and comb the dog. These combs are especially made to pick out the fleas. Have a container with a shallow amount of water nearby (a tall container works best with about a 1/4 way filled with water). When you catch a flea, drop it in the water. Fleas drown easily.

It is too bad the dog can't be brought indoors. It sounds like the area where it lays is infested with fleas. If you get Advantage or another product, it should break the flea growth cycle after a couple of months. Until then, the dog may be suffering.

Whatever you do, do not pour gasoline on the dog! I know it sounds ridiculous but it is an old wives tale and a very bad one. I was at the Vets one day when they got a phone call from someone who had done this to get rid of the fleas on the dog. They called the Vet because for "some reason" the dog was in misery. It's skin was burning terribly.
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07-15-2012, 06:35 AM,
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Mudd04 Offline
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
That poor baby! Both the dog and the environment should be treated. Fleas are environmental and our pets make excellent and convenient hosts and food sources so they tend to gravitate towards them. There do not have to be pets for there to be fleas.

One safe and non-toxic way to help prevent fleas is Diatomaceous Earth. Diatomaceous Earth is made from crushed marine fossils and pierces the shell of a lot of bugs and insects, dehydrating them and helping with their maintenance and control. It can be used in powder form or mixed in a spray. You can find Diatomaceous Earth at many garden supply stores as well as online and food grade Diatomaceous Earth can be found in some feed stores.

Introducing Nematodes into the yard / environment during a bug problem is another all natural way to help prevent flea and insect infestations. Nematodes are a parasite in the roundworm family that don't cause harm to animals or people but help control fleas and other insects. Different nematodes are better for different control / insect issues so be sure you are getting the right one. There are also recommended amounts for the species of nematode you need as well as the size of the area. Nematodes can be purchased through companies that supply them online.

If there are fleas, ticks and mosquitos then heartworm can also be an environmental concern and pets in those areas should be on preventative maintenance programs. Vets often recommend products that aid in the control of all three at once and are very easily applied by droplets on the back of the neck or a couple may be oral at regular specified intervals. There are over the counter flea and tick control products sold but the incidence of toxicity and adverse reactions can be pretty high. Be sure you read the instructions and what NOT to do very closely if you decide to try something along those lines but a better vet recommended product is usually the better route.

If your dog or cat has fleas a round of treatment for tapeworms might be a good idea since they tend to go hand in hand.

Good Luck!
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07-25-2012, 08:57 AM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
Ok, thank you everyone but I think there's been a misunderstanding. We regularly check him for fleas and he doesn't have any. The problem is biting FLIES. Like the kind you would see on cows and horses. It would be ideal to have my sister let him live inside but what can I do? He's not my dog and she refuses.
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07-28-2012, 01:57 PM,
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Mudd04 Offline
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
Oh My Gosh. I am so sorry. For the most part I know of a product called 'flies off' that some pet stores in the area may carry that seems to help a lot in many but not all cases. If not that, they may carry something similar. The Advantix product for flea and tic control is also supposed to help with the control of flies eating them up but I don't know how well it works for that.

I found a variation recipe on the vinegar with some additions you might try. Mix 1 ounce of citronella oil with 1 cup of cider vinegar and 1 cup of boiling water. Add a basil a bay leaf. Once it cools off try applying it to the ears.

The most effective method is keeping them inside through most of the day. I'm sure the situation is frustrating for you since you can only do so much.
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07-31-2012, 07:28 AM,
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writer811 Offline
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
(07-28-2012, 01:57 PM)Mudd04 Wrote: Oh My Gosh. I am so sorry. For the most part I know of a product called 'flies off' that some pet stores in the area may carry that seems to help a lot in many but not all cases. If not that, they may carry something similar. The Advantix product for flea and tic control is also supposed to help with the control of flies eating them up but I don't know how well it works for that.

I found a variation recipe on the vinegar with some additions you might try. Mix 1 ounce of citronella oil with 1 cup of cider vinegar and 1 cup of boiling water. Add a basil a bay leaf. Once it cools off try applying it to the ears.

The most effective method is keeping them inside through most of the day. I'm sure the situation is frustrating for you since you can only do so much.

Thank you very much! I'll look for both of those products in the stores the next time I go. I don't suppose you know of any specific stores that carry it? I usually go to Petsmart or Critter Corner for everything I need but if you know of others that definitely carry it, that would be a big help. Thank you!
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07-31-2012, 07:42 AM,
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Thor Offline
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
(07-28-2012, 01:57 PM)Mudd04 Wrote: Oh My Gosh. I am so sorry. For the most part I know of a product called 'flies off' that some pet stores in the area may carry that seems to help a lot in many but not all cases. If not that, they may carry something similar. The Advantix product for flea and tic control is also supposed to help with the control of flies eating them up but I don't know how well it works for that.

I found a variation recipe on the vinegar with some additions you might try. Mix 1 ounce of citronella oil with 1 cup of cider vinegar and 1 cup of boiling water. Add a basil a bay leaf. Once it cools off try applying it to the ears.

The most effective method is keeping them inside through most of the day. I'm sure the situation is frustrating for you since you can only do so much.

Are you sure about this "flies off"? I looked around, and the only product close to that name is Flys Off. It is used for horses. Is there a dog version somewhere or can this be used for dogs too? Nothing like that has been mentioned in the description of the product.

I agree that the most effective way to keep flies off your dog is to keep the dog indoor. Too bad there are even people out there will not let their dogs to ever go inside.



(07-31-2012, 07:28 AM)writer811 Wrote: Thank you very much! I'll look for both of those products in the stores the next time I go. I don't suppose you know of any specific stores that carry it? I usually go to Petsmart or Critter Corner for everything I need but if you know of others that definitely carry it, that would be a big help. Thank you!

I found it, it is in the link above but it is for horses as it's mentioned on the product.
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07-31-2012, 04:12 PM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
I have kinda avoided posting in this thread, as I have very little experience with dogs. But I am petty good with insect control. The best thing I could recommend would be "no pest strips", particularly the original vapona type. Hang them in the area the flies are affecting, but high up enough your dog(s) can't touch them. And if you can.get the original vapona type, use gloves when handling them.

There is a newer version manufactured by Hot Shot, but they don't seem to be as effective. The old school vapona, with the active ingredient 2,2-dichlorovinyl dimethyl phosphate, was the best weapon I've ever seen on flies in an outdoor open area.
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07-31-2012, 07:33 PM,
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Victor Leigh Offline
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
In the first place, flies don't normally hang around dogs.

The flies, however, do hang around areas of the skin which have been broken. They will lay their eggs in the wounds. That makes that part of the skin itchy. The dog scratches it and more skin is broken. Which attracts even more flies.

So I would say, the first thing to do, is to treat the skin. Clean it with antibiotics and apply acriflavin on it. Iodine, if the condition warrants it but, remember, iodine is very biting. Then find a way to keep the dog from scratching the afffected part. A cone should work, in most cases. Of course, the dog should be bathed more times than usual to keep it clean and, more importantly, smelling clean.

It's the smell of the rotting flesh in the wound which attracts the flies.

[Image: dog%2Bcone.jpg]
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08-03-2012, 04:24 AM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
(07-31-2012, 04:12 PM)Fishbone Wrote: I have kinda avoided posting in this thread, as I have very little experience with dogs. But I am petty good with insect control. The best thing I could recommend would be "no pest strips", particularly the original vapona type. Hang them in the area the flies are affecting, but high up enough your dog(s) can't touch them. And if you can.get the original vapona type, use gloves when handling them.

There is a newer version manufactured by Hot Shot, but they don't seem to be as effective. The old school vapona, with the active ingredient 2,2-dichlorovinyl dimethyl phosphate, was the best weapon I've ever seen on flies in an outdoor open area.

Thanks! I'll be sure to try that. Also, Victor Leigh, I'm sure that's true for some species of flies but not these ones. They are actual biting flies and will bite him where there is no broken skin. You can see where they've been on him (The ears and nose, where the fur is thinnest and the blood vessels are closer to the skin) because they leave behind a small red dot of blood where they bite. If it were regular flies, I wouldn't be as concerned. If there's infected flesh in the open wound the maggots will devour it but they leave the healthy flesh alone. It's becoming practice again for doctors to use maggots to clean out infected wounds in their patients because of drug-resistant bacteria. But that's not an issue. These are biting flies and we haven't found any maggots where they bite him.
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08-07-2012, 01:07 PM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
I would suggest placing fly traps around the area of the dog. Here are some homemade biting fly trap ideas. It mentions that they are for biting flies of horses, but believe me a fly has no care whether it's biting a horse or a dog and I'm sure the species of flies that feed on horses are also related to the flies that are biting your sister's dog.
http://www.showhorsepromotions.com/horseflies.htm
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08-08-2012, 02:04 AM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
I am assuming your sister must keep the dog outside, which in some circumstances is needed and can be done properly,and the dog is happy and healthy.

I agree with Victor, treat the area daily and keep dry. The cone should help him from continuing to break open the effected area. My daughter had the same issue with one of her goats a few years ago. She contacted a local farmer who had horses, he gave her a sauve to put on the ears of the goat. I'm not sure what it was called but it worked great. Once the area was healed the flies went away.
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08-08-2012, 09:18 AM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
I did a little more research from my original post, and it appears the hot shot versions of the no pest strips have the same ingredient, at a weaker concentration than the original vapona. If you hang one of these up, it will get rid of the flies if used as directed. You can get them almost anywhere. Just make sure its high enough the dog can't chew or lick it. This is a kind of old school solution, you have to be careful with them, you don't want any animals actually touching the strip. But, it is very effective. Just my couple of pennies.
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08-09-2012, 04:16 AM,
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RE: Help Getting Rid of Biting Flies
The affected area is his face. He can't break it open because he can't bite his nose or ear. A cone is not going to help and will actually hurt because it will prevent him from rubbing his nose in the dirt (That's how animals in the wild keep the flies of, they rub themselves in dirt and mud). His ears are the main problem, he can't get dirt on them. But thank you Ihins and Fishbone. I'm going to recommend to my sister that she try this.
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