Dog Mange & Borax

By Kimberly Hawthorne

Mange is a skin disease caused by mites that burrow beneath the skin. Mites cause lesions, genetic disorders, immune system deficiency, hair loss and, if left untreated, death. Mange mites affect many animals, as well as people. Mange-causing mites cannot reproduce on humans and will only live three days without a furry mammal to be their host. Borax seems to be an effective home remedy.


Borax is a natural mineral made of sodium, boron, oxygen and water. Borax is sold in the laundry detergent aisle. It is essential not to confuse borax with boric acid. Boric acid is extremely toxic.

Borax Solution Recipe

For a small dog, mix one cup hydrogen peroxide with two cups water. Add 3 tbsp. of borax, and let dissolve. For large dogs or to make in bulk, fill a five gallon bucket with warm water and add a 200 ml bottle of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide. Add one cup of borax to the bucket until dissolved. Keep adding small amounts of borax until it no longer dissolves. This means it is fully saturated and ready to use.


Wash your dog with tea tree oil shampoo or baby shampoo. Rinse out the shampoo and sponge or spray the borax solution, completely saturating your dog's fur and skin. Do not rinse the borax solution and do not towel dry. After the hair has been allowed to air dry, apply lavender oil with a cotton ball to areas that your dog scratches most. Repeat this treatment at least three to four times per week. This treatment works best if done daily. Continue the procedure until there are no signs of mange and for no longer than four weeks.

Prevent Re-infestation

Mange-causing mites live on everything. To prevent re-infestation, it is vital to treat all cloth and fiber surfaces, dog-grooming tools and carpets in the home. Fill a spray bottle with the borax solution to use on your dog's grooming tools. Cover furniture with plastic and seal with duct tape. Sprinkle borax powder on carpets, leave for 24 hours, then vacuum. Bag your bedding and your dog's bedding in plastic bags and tie shut. Everything must remain covered and bagged until your dog shows no signs of mange.

Side Effects

Do not allow your dog to ingest borax powder. Symptoms include diarrhea, loss of appetite, vomiting, and convulsions. Borax is basically a highly concentrated salt and is not toxic to dogs unless ingested. The borax solution can cause very dry skin, which lavender oil may help. Hydrogen peroxide is not toxic to dogs but will induce vomiting if ingested.