If you've got cats, there's a good chance that you'll wind up having to deal with fleas at some point. While there are any number of medications on the market, you might decide that you'd rather not apply either pesticides or topical chemicals to your pet. If that's the case, you can go the holistic route and use garlic to help rid your cat of fleas. One of the easiest ways to get garlic into your cat's system is by adding garlic oil to its food.
Garlic and garlic oil are used in many holistic flea products, but to date the Food and Drug Administration has not studied whether or not they are effective. For this reason, you'll notice that many of the holistic products put the disclaimer on their labels stating that the FDA has not evaluated the veracity of the statements they make. Anecdotally, however, there appear to be some repellent properties found in garlic, judging from the many statements made on various dog and cat forums.
Making Garlic Oil
Take three large cloves of garlic, put them in a baking pan, add 3 cups of olive oil, cover with a piece of aluminum foil and bake for about an hour. Strain the oil and store it in an airtight container. An even easier way is to simply cook the garlic and oil in a pot; let it come to a simmer, then reduce the heat and let the oil cook the garlic for about 15 minutes. Stir occasionally to make sure that the garlic doesn't burn; even if it does, the oil will still be usable.
Dosage is a matter of your own judgment. About 1 tsp. per food serving is a reasonable amount, although you can use a little more if you so desire. You'll probably want to mix it thoroughly with your cat's food.
Botulism and Garlic Oil
Using homemade garlic oil poses a danger of botulism in people. You probably won't have to worry about it, since most dogs and cats have a fairly high resistance to botulism. If you want to be on the safe side, however, you could make up a new batch of garlic oil once a week or so.
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.