Home Animal What Can Kill Ticks Instantly? A Helpful Guide for Pet Owners
what can kill ticks instantly

What Can Kill Ticks Instantly? A Helpful Guide for Pet Owners

by Martha Simmonds

Ticks are pesky parasites that can cause a lot of discomfort to you and your pet. These tiny little bloodsucking insects hide in your dog’s fur and survive by feeding off your precious pup. If you’re a pet parent and have noticed your dog excessively scratching or licking at certain parts of its body, having difficulty breathing, or even limping, odds are your dog has ticks.

But don’t panic! Read this guide to learn what can kill ticks instantly and permanently!

An Introduction to Ticks


Ticks are microscopic, almost spider-like parasites that feed on your pet’s blood. These bloodsuckers can measure 1mm up to 1cm long. When ticks drink more blood, they swell and grow in size. An adult tick satisfied with its blood meal can grow up to the size of a marble. Some ticks have six legs, while others have eight legs, similar to their close relative, the spider.

Given the nature of their diet, ticks often make their home in the woodlands, gardens, and your pet’s body.

Ticks have no wings, so they do not fly. But these creatures are adept climbers and tend to wait for a host to pass by so they can grab onto them. This is called questing.

There are different types of ticks, all with different colors ranging from reddish brown to dark brown to black. And when a tick feeds on its host for several days, its usual brownish coloring will turn into a greenish-blue hue.

Although tiny, ticks can transmit various diseases such as Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, Tick-Borne Relapsing Fever, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. It is thus crucial to eliminate them and embrace a proactive approach to kill these parasites before they cause severe harm.

What Can Kill Ticks Instantly?

Kill Ticks

Different remedies, from natural remedies to chemical solutions, can kill ticks promptly.

Depending on the severity of the tick infestation you are dealing with, you can start with one and then move into more of these recommended solutions to get rid of these parasites.

#1. Salt

Yes, your regular table salt can kill not just the fully developed ticks but all the eggs and larvae. Salt can dehydrate these critters until they fall apart.

All you need to do is to sprinkle salt around your house, focusing on the corners of your furniture and floors. It’s best to place salt at night so that you can vacuum it first thing in the morning. For areas that are covered with carpet, you will need to add a thicker layer of salt and leave it undisturbed for at least a week before vacuuming.

Of course, make sure your pet doesn’t wander in the areas where you applied the salt.

#2. Dishwashing Liquid

You can use dishwashing liquid for bathing your pet if there’s a severe tick infestation. Lather a generous amount of kitchen dishwashing liquid on your dog and let it soak for about 15 minutes before thoroughly rinsing it off.

In the meantime, let your dog stay indoors and be watchful for any skin irritations that can occur. While this will kill the ticks, it will not kill the tick eggs. And if your dog has any allergies or skin sensitivities, talk to your vet about using dishwashing liquid, as it can be quite harsh.

#3. Boric Acid or Borax

Boric acid is a primary component in almost all commercial flea powders. You can easily sprinkle it around your home to get rid of ticks.

Note that borax alone can only be effective for larvae on rugs, carpets, and other upholsteries and won’t have much effect on adult ticks.

#4. Essential Oils

Essential oils, apart from smelling good, not only have calming effects, but they also have a natural ability to repel and even kill ticks. Ticks don’t appreciate citrusy smells like lemon and orange. They also don’t like the smell of eucalyptus, cinnamon, cedar, peppermint, rose geranium, and lavender.

So, to use this aromatic hack, just add about 20 drops of any of these natural oils to four ounces of water and spray it around your home. Be careful about which essential oil you use since some smells are not agreeable with pets. Some essential oils can be harmful to dogs. So, check with your vet before using this solution.

#5. Isopropyl alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is a death sentence to ticks and can kill them instantly.

Once you remove ticks from your pet, place them in a cup or a container with a lid filled with alcohol. The alcohol will suffocate the ticks in no time.

#6. Neem oil

If you want an effective remedy to kill the ticks, neem oil can be one of the best weapons. When neem oil comes into contact with a tick, it will clog the parasite’s airways, eventually leading to suffocation.

Once you’ve removed the tick off your dog’s body, drop them in a bowl containing a solution of water and neem oil. You can also mix it with water and spray it in your yard, as it will work as an excellent preventive measure to control and eliminate any tick population.

#7. Apple cider vinegar

The jack of all trades in your pantry, apple cider can easily kill ticks. The best part is it is perfectly safe for your dogs, too. To make a powerful solution, mix two cups of water with two tablespoons of neem oil and four tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle.

You can spray this mixture on your dog’s coat, especially on areas your dog has been scratching. Make sure you spray away from its face to avoid the solution entering your pup’s eyes or mouth.

#8. Bleach

Bleach is an extremely powerful solution for killing ticks instantly. But be careful not to use it directly on or near your dog since it can have harmful effects.

All you need is to put the ticks that you’ve captured from your pet in a container with bleach — the chemical will take care of these parasites.

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