Dryer Sheets Keep Away Nasty Flying Insects!

Summer bug problems?

I nearly forgot about this low-tech simple solution really works to keep away the nasty little biting, flying insects that swarm around me and my dogs when we go on summer walks in the middle of summer.

My girls Maisie and Wanda — who run across fields, streams and into woods year-round — are already fully protected against ticks with their monthly applications of Vectra 3D or K9 Advantix II. In addition, this spring I added the long-acting Seresto collar, after hearing one too many blood-chilling accounts of the ever-emerging horrible diseases transmitted by an ever-expanding world of ticks looking to gorge on us and our dogs.

The best topical anti-tick products kill-on-contact — so that the tick only needs to land on the dog to die and does not have a chance to take a “blood meal,” which is how the tick-borne diseases are transmitted. In theory, these topicals also have a repellent effect on other insects — but tell that to the mosquitoes, gnats, little black flies and other incredibly annoying flying insects that proliferate during the summer! And watch out for the panicked, tail-tucked misery of a short-coated dog being molested by these bugs!

Those of you with furry dogs (like my Golden Retriever Roma was, and my Collie-mix Jazzy) don’t know the torture these insects are for our “nude” dogs like my Weimaraners, or anybody’s Dobie, Viszla, hound of any kind, etc.

So here’s the “trick:” right before you go outdoors, take a dryer sheet and rub it all over your dog’s head, back, sides, armpits, belly. If you have two dogs as I do, turn the dryer sheet over and use the other side on dog #2. You can use a dryer sheet the same way on your own skin and clothes and hat — and even tuck it into the back of a baseball cap so it hangs down. It works!

But just to be sure I wasn’t leading you down a (bug free) garden path, I did a quick internet check and found this article from Smithsonian.com which confirmed the folk wisdom as having scientific proof!

—Tracie Hotchner

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photo credit: mhobl Willi im Grünen via photopin (license)