CareCleaning & HygieneHow to Keep Flies Away From Your Dog Kennels

How to Keep Flies Away From Your Dog Kennels

The best way to keep flies away from dog kennels is to immediately clean up after the dogs. Flies are naturally attracted to dog poop and dog food. When you let either of those sit out for longer than needed, flies will swarm. You can also use a pet-friendly DEET spray to keep the flies away.

It’s no secret that flies are annoying. Not only can they be nuisances to your picnics and homes, but they can wreak havoc for your dog, too.

Flies around your dog’s kennel can disturb and annoy your dog, so it’s important to keep them away. In addition to just being a nuisance, flies can be unsanitary for your dog and its kennel.

If you’re having trouble keeping flies away from your dog’s kennel, there are a few tips and tricks you can use to get rid of the pesky bugs.

Why Are Flies Attracted To My Dog’s Kennel?

It’s important to know why flies are coming to your dog’s kennel in the first place before you can get rid of them.

Flies often show up because they’re attracted to something around the kennel. If your dog’s food bowl is near the kennel, the flies may try to get to the dog food the same way they swarm around outdoor picnics.

If you have a puppy who’s not house-trained, flies may be attracted to dog feces. Moist or liquid areas also attract flies for breeding purposes.

If you have any fly breeding areas around your dog’s kennel, you can bet you’ll get flies.

Get Rid of Areas That Attract Fleas

Before you go out and buy a fly repellent, consider keeping the kennel clean and sanitary first. Keeping a clean area is not only better for your dog, but will not attract as many flies.

There are many ways to do this.

Clean Up After Your Dog

Dogs are naturally curious and sometimes messy animals. Cleaning up after them is imperative to reduce fly attraction around their kennel.

If your dog is not house-trained, keep a close eye on them and immediately clean up after them. It’s also important to dispose of their waste properly in an outside area, or flies will swarm the waste.

If their food bowl is near their kennel, consider investing in a portion control or timed feeder. Simply put, make sure there isn’t any leftover dog food in their bowl that may attract flies.

Portion Control

To use portion control during mealtime, feed your dog twice a day, eight to twelve hours apart. For each meal, measure the amount of food you’re giving to your dog. This ensures that most days, there’s no leftover food that your dog hasn’t finished.

Make sure there is no trash or any waste around your dog’s kennel, such as dirt they may track in.

Also, make sure your windows and doors are closed to prevent flies from coming inside your home.

Pet-Safe Fly Repellents

If preventative measures don’t work, it may be time to purchase a pet-safe fly repellent. But make sure you know the ingredients, as many fly repellents contain harsh chemicals that are toxic or even deadly for dogs.

Medicated Topicals

A medicated topical repellent is a great option for your dog. K9 Advantix can be applied monthly and is very effective at repelling insects like biting flies, ticks, and mosquitoes.

Monthly topicals will not stop flies from being attracted to your dog’s kennel, but it will repel flies from your dog.

Bug Zappers

Another option is bug zappers or fly swatters. Although these won’t keep flies away from your kennel, they will kill files that are already there.


One popular fly repellent is vinegar. Simply mixing equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle acts as a natural fly repellent.

Essential Oils

Lavender oil will do the trick. Dip a sponge or cloth into lavender oil. Set it aside in a sealed container for a day and place the container around your dog’s kennel.

Be sure to replenish as needed and make sure your dog cannot get to the lavender oil.

Other essential oils can be used as well, such as basil or eucalyptus, but you must dilute it with water. Be careful to not apply the oil directly to your dog’s skin, as it can irritate your dog.

Lemongrass Water

Lemongrass water can work as a repellent by combining a few drops of lemongrass into a spray bottle full of water.

Don’t spray this mixture anywhere your dog will lick, but you can spray it around your dog’s kennel. Lemongrass repellent can also be sprayed directly at a fly when you see one.

Alternatives to Fly Repellents

If you don’t want to use any repellent at all, there are at-home natural options to eliminate flies.

You can grow plants or flowers flies don’t like, such as basil, lavender, mint, or marigold.

If your dog kennel is near a windowsill, try placing the plants close to the kennel to repel flies.

You can also make homemade flypaper to catch flies. Use strips of paper dipped into a mixture of corn syrup and sugar. Hang them above your dog’s kennel, but high enough so your dog can’t get to them.

You can also make a homemade fly trap. To do this:

  1. Cut a soda bottle in half and fill the bottom half with water and a bit of dish soap.
  2. Place the top half upside-down, so the top of the bottle is facing the water.
  3. Spread honey on the top half and place it near your dog’s kennel.

However, your dog will likely be attracted to the honey, so keep it out of reach.

Avoid DEET Products

The number one thing to look out for in sprays is DEET. DEET is preferred in bug repellents for humans because of its high efficiency.

While there are scattered reports of health concerns in humans while using DEET, it’s still an accepted chemical in repellents. However, it’s not safe for dogs.

DEET, otherwise known as diethyltoluamide or N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide, is the most common ingredient in insect repellents and comes in concentrations anywhere from 10% to 100%.

It works by repelling and deterring insects by interacting with their neurons and receptors that detect chemicals.

Be aware of signs that your dog may be having a reaction to a product containing DEET, such as eye issues like squinting and tearing.

If your dog inhales DEET, they may have trouble breathing. Any type of contact with DEET can cause digestive problems in your dog, such as vomiting and diarrhea.

If your dog is exposed to a high concentration of DEET, they may have seizures or tremors.

Although you may think your dog is safe around DEET, be aware if they get any on their fur, they will be curious and attempt to lick it off, which can be detrimental to their health.

If you think your dog has had exposure to DEET and is having a reaction, contact your veterinarian immediately.

There are many pet-safe fly repellents you can choose instead. Picaridin is a dog-safe chemical that works as an insect repellent by altering the insect’s sense of smell. Picaridin is also useful to repel ticks, gnats, and other pesky insects.

Flies are a nuisance for humans and dogs, and kennels can be a hotspot for flies. Whether you want to use pet-safe repellent, natural options, or at-home remedies, keeping flies at bay doesn’t have to be a hassle.

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