Farm News/Blog

Home made Bug Repellant Recipes

Posted on January 10, 2013 at 5:45 PM

Having a number of  horses here at the farm one of the primary things is to make my dollar stretch. When bug season comes the commercial fly sprays from the tack shop we literally use by the gallon it seems. We live on a heavily forested area with a lot of ponds and prime breeding areas for insects. We have blackflies, a heavy mosquito presence, and of course the dreaded horse fly.

Below are a few bug spray recipes that I have found, formulated to fit what I like, and changed to what I use for what seems to work here and of course not smell too badly.

Feel free to try them out and I will be adding various different ones from time to time.

please note: these recipes are formulated from my own experience and every horse has different sensitivities. Use your own judgement when using different substances on your horses. Your vet is your best adviser as to what is safe for your horses health.



Fly Repellent Ointment like swatt


I use this a great deal and the cost savings are substantial as it only costs approximately 25%  of the fly repellent ointment in the tack store.My friends all have started using this mix and the cost savings are well worth the trouble to mix this upworth it

Repellant: I use Farnam's "wipe" brand 

I jar of vaselline any size

Mix chosen amount of wipe into a container of Vaseline, ( I use approximately an ounce of liquid per 4 ounces fof vaseline but if you use too much repellant the mixture is too runny to use as an ointment)

apply as needed to belly, flank and areas of horse that are being bitten. Works well for every bug from black flies and horse fly's  to mosquito

Recipe #1 Equine 

2/3 cup(167ml) Listerine Mouthwash

2/3 cup (167ml) apple cider Vinegar

1/3 cup (83 ml) vegetable Oil

20 drops (1ml) spearmint oil

20 drops (1ml) cedar oil

You can also substitute white vinegar if the apple cider vinegar is too strong smelling This one is quite effective

but my colt smells a bit like a pickle.



Recipe 2 Equine

2 cups (500ml) apple cider vinegar

2 cups (500ml) cold prepared tea (sage) or (chamomile)

20 drops (1ml) eucalyptus oil

20 drops (1ml)  lavender oil

20 drops (1ml)  citronella oil

20 drops (1ml)  tea tree oil

20 drops (1ml)  cedar oil

I also added 2 oz of Avon skin so soft (any other oil can be substituted if this is not available where you are)

20 drops (1ml)  emulsifier such as polysorbate 20 but you can skip this step  just  shake frequently

as the oils will separate

 Recipe #3 Equine ( My version of the Skin so Soft Mix)

2 cups (500ml) white vinegar

1 cup(250ml) Avon skin so soft (original formula)

1 cup (250ml) of listerine  

1 tablespoon of Eucalyptus Oil

1 tablespoon of Tea tree Oil

1 tablespoon of Citronella Oil

Formula for Roll On: Equine


I use this in a recycled bottle and roll iton around the ears and face (NOT close to the eyes)

20 drops Eucalyptus oil

20 drops Cedarwood oil

10 drops Tea Tree oil

10 drops Geranium oil

2 oz. carrier oil ( such as mineral oil )

Mix together in a 4 oz. container. Apply to skin as needed avoiding the eye area.

Test on a small area of skin for sensitivities .

Experiment with different percentages of essential oil.


 For Dogs! Natural Bug Repellent Recipe

10 drops Geranium oil

10 drops Lemongrass oil

5 drops Lavender oil

5 drops Peppermint oil

5 drops Eucalyptus oil (Some people like to use lemon scented)

2 drops Catnip oil

Mix the above with 1/4 cup water. Shake well before each use.

Use  all recipes at your own risk and please consult your veterinarian with any questions.



Categories: Cuardach Equine, Recipes (diy cleaner/cosmetic etc), Do it yourself