How to Make Homemade Fly Spray

There’s nothing quite like the warmer weather.  The longer days, the soft breeze on a warm summer’s day, the smell of freshly cut grass, the flies…. okay, maybe not the flies.  This is why you may need to learn how to make homemade fly spray.

how to make homemade fly spray


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Okay, so let’s be real here.  No matter how exciting it is that winter ends and the warmer weather arrives, not EVERYTHING about spring and summer is enjoyable.

One of those negatives about the warmer weather is the insane amount of bugs it can bring.  Especially if you live in the country or have a homestead.  Mosquitos.  House flies.  Deer Flies.  Black Flies.  Horse Flies.  We got’em all.



Right now we are in the beginning of blackfly season.  Every spring the black flies are ridiculous out where we live because unfortunately, deep in the woods near our house are some nice swampy areas.  It’s not just ogres who love the swamps.  Black flies and mosquitos are in all their glory when they find a swamp.

Bugs seem to be drawn to my husband more than me for some reason.  He’ll be upset at the amount of blackflies or mosquitos swarming him outside and then he’ll ask me if they are swarming me to which I often reply, “no.”

He then stares at me incredulously.  Like I must be lying.  (or maybe he’s secretly jealous that the bugs just don’t love me like they love him…)

They just don’t seem to bother me as much.  Don’t get me wrong – when they are thick I feel them.  But they have to be pretty bad before they are attacking me.

I guess some people are just tastier to blackflies and mosquitos than others. 😉

However, I’ve got an itch or two already from the blackflies so I don’t get away with not being bitten completely.  I do have a post about some good essential oils for bug bites if you are looking for something to soothe the itch.

But this post is more about the flies that bug your animals on the homestead.  Or the flies that drive you nuts every time you walk near your animals.

Having a homemade fly spray can help reduce the amount of flies you are dealing with on those really hot days.  Today I’m going to share a homemade fly spray recipe that you can use on your animals and around your barn.  You can feel good about using this recipe too because it’s all natural ingredients.

Also, if you are looking for a homemade fly spray for dogs, you can use this one too. I use it on my dog and it’s great!

Now, let’s be realistic here.  With a homestead comes flies.  It’s inevitable.  There’s no way you are going to completely get rid of those flies that are driving you crazy. The hot weather brings flies – that’s just the way it goes. But, this spray can really minimize the issue.  And your animals will love you for it.

I spray this on my lambs and pigs and they don’t mind being sprayed at all.  It’s definitely helped on those super “fly” days.  You can use this spray on a horse or a cow or goats as well.

In this recipe I use essential oils.  Now, if you don’t have the oils I have or just want to use something different that’s definitely fine.  Many people use oils like rosemary, tea tree, basil, cedarwood, and more.  I used peppermint, geranium, and Nature Shield.

I chose peppermint because I’ve had a lot of success with peppermint detering critters.  I’ve used it to keep mice away, as well as bugs.

Geranium is a good oil for repelling ticks so if you have ticks in your area I recommend geranium.

Terrashield is a special blend I buy that was created for the purpose of repelling bugs so it makes sense to me to add it to the fly spray.  However, if you don’t have it you can use a different oil.

Just make sure the essential oils you use are 100% pure oil.  Some oils have other things added to them and you don’t want to be putting that on your animals, so be sure to read the ingredients on the bottle.

I just put this spray in an amber glass bottle with a spray top.  You can find some of my favorite ones over here on Amazon.

Okay, let’s make some fly spray to make those animals smile!  (Do animals smile?  I’m not really sure…)


1 tbsp Oil (I used olive oil but you can use any liquid oil you have on hand)

1 tbsp Castile Soap (if you have no castile soap you can use dish soap instead)

1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

10 drops Peppermint Essential Oil

10 drops Nature Sheild Essential Oil

10 drops Geranium Essential Oil

1 cup Water


Using a funnel pour all the ingredients into a glass bottle and shake.  That’s all there is to it!

Right before I use this on my animals I always give it a little shake.  You can also spray around their stalls to help reduce flies.

If you have a lot of animals I recommend doubling the recipe.  This fills a 500 ml bottle.   You can spray your animals a couple times a day if you like.

Even though the flies can be a nuisance, I will happily take them if it means we can have warm weather.  Our winter extended much longer than usual, with some snow flying around on May 11th and May 12th.  That’s just 11 days ago.  I know some areas of Canada are used to seeing that, mainly northern Canada, but definitely not my area.  And so give me all the flies if it means I can have the warm weather too.

Plus, I have fly spray so I am completely and totally prepared to battle these flies in my little barn!  And now you can make it too to battle the flies in your barn.

What about you?  Do you find the flies a little too much for yourself in the warmer weather?  Do you have your own little tip or secret to dealing with them?  If you do, let me know in the comments below.  I love to hear new tips and ideas!


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