natural donkey care

The flies are in full force here in Tennessee and I’m pulling out all the good stuff to try and keep my donkeys as comfortable as possible but also as ‘organic’ as possible! If they are fly free but I’m dousing them in harmful chemicals that don’t really help out in the long run. For them or my family that’s around them all the time. This homemade fly spray is easy to make and safe!

If you missed it do check out my Fly Repellent Ointment for Equine [Free Recipe]

I like using it on the more sensitive areas like ears and belly. I use this fly spray with the fly repelling salve all the time and they work great, smell great and are healthy for us all!

Why Natural Donkey Products and What is the Best Fly Spray for Donkeys?

I’ve touched on this subject in several posts. I myself sometimes have horrible reactions to fake chemical fragrances which fly sprays are heavy in. I know they are soaking into my skin as well as my donkeys.

When fly sprays warn against inhaling their products I get a bit nervous! What!? How can I not inhale it while I’m spraying it and what about my donkeys? Is it safe for them to inhale? This makes no sense. So why not use a safe product take keeps away the flies that actually has added benefits. A homemade fly spray is the way to go!

The Right Way To Apply Fly Spray to a donkey

I had a long talk a few summers ago about fly sprays. He and his assistant had a good laugh when I asked which ones worked! Apparently none.

One thing he did tell me that helped was how to apply fly spray so it will work better! Applying this way will mean your donkey will absorb more of the spray though. Not a problem with a good all-natural spray but with the chemical sprays… ick!

Anyhow, this is how he told me to apply fly spray so it will work. Very simple and it does make a difference!

  1. Brush and groom all the dirt and dust off your horse.
  2. Spray heavily!
  3. Then brush again.
  4. Also spray tail, mane, and brush through it also.

It really did help when I started applying sprays this way.

I made a video so you can see exactly how I apply fly spray so it actually made a difference!

The Homemade Fly Spray Ingredients

There are many good homemade horse fly sprays you can make. I’ve tried many of them and many of them work just fine! I like this one because I added some ‘extras’ for my donkeys in it.

Peppermint Tea: This is a nice addition because it’s very cooling to the skin. It’s totally optional and you could just use water in its place. On a hot day though I fell like it’s a nice addition plus the donkeys love peppermint!

Aloe: We all know that aloe has super skin-soothing qualities! I use an aloe juice but you can use a gel. It will mix up fine. There is no way to keep horses from getting any bug bites so this is a super nice addition to help soothe any irritation from previous bites they may have got in the pasture. I recommend you do use unscented though! Some of the scents in aloe are sweet and could attract insects!

Unscented Shampoo or mild liquid soap: This is what will allow the essential oils to blend with the water/tea mixture so they can disperse a bit more evenly. Always shake before using though!

Lavender, Cajeput, Eucalyptus and Rosemary Essential oils: All these oils are safe for donkeys and have properties that repel flies and other insects. I actually use this spray on my shoes when I go hiking to repel ticks from trying to climb up my shoes! Rosemary has the added benefit of being stimulating to the circulation.

No time to make fly spray but want a good one thats natural? I love this one and it’s inexpensive too! Espree Aloe Herbal Fly Spray

Homemade Fly Spray Formula!

Without further delay here is the formula:

1/2 Cup of strongly brewed peppermint tea steeped at least 10 minutes. 

4 Tsp. of Aloe

1 Tsp. Of unscented shampoo or unscented liquid soap

1 Cup water

50 drops of each of the following essential oils; Lavender, Cajeput, Eucalyptus, and Rosemary.

Funnel is all into a 16 oz. spray bottle. Top off with more water or ACV (I get my spray bottle on Amazon) and shake! Ready to use! Don’t forget to label!

This is perfectly safe to use on yourself too! I often spray my clothes with it before a ride or drive. Sometimes before gardening!

Other Essential Oils to try for your Fly Spray

You can easily experiment with these oils I used because there are many essential oils that repel insects.

Eucalyptus Lemon, Geranium, Lemon, Lemongrass, Sandalwood, Citronella, Garlic, Lemon Balm, Litsea Cubea, Cedarwood, Patchouli.

Essential Oils for Donkeys Book

For even more information on essential oils for donkeys, formulas, safety, dilution chart and more check out my ebook. Wrote especially for donkeys but works for all equine. Click picture for more information

essential oils for donkeys

Do donkeys need fly mask?

A donkey fly mask can really help too! I started making these for my donkeys and by request I added them to my tack shop. They are easily accepted by donkeys and they really work! Click pic for info to order your donkey a fly mask. 

donkey fly mask

If you are into natural donkey care do check out my other formulas on my blog. My donkey Jasper has suffered horrible skin reactions from chemical sprays. Since I’ve been using homemade natural products he’s not had a single reaction!

Check out my Rain Rot in Donkeys {FREE Home Remedy}

and my wonderful Donkey Grooming {FREE Recipe Coat Conditioner)

If you have leather tack you might also want to check out my Natural leather conditioner formula because yes, the leather conditioners are full of chemicals too and they don’t even have to tell you wants in them! This leather conditioner is awesome though! It’s on this post Tack Care {Conditioning and Restoring Leather}

P.S. Want more Natural Donkey Care Info

Sign up for my Donkey Lovers List! I share tips on training, natural health care support, case studies, and everything donkey! 

*Article may contain affiliate links at no cost to you that help me pay for this website and other resources for donkeys lovers.