Natural Fly Spray for Horses – Reviews and Recipe {Printable}

Throughout most of the year, flies and other pesky insects are an ongoing issue no matter which part of the country you live in, but natural fly spray for horses may be your solution.

Despite the best stable keeping practices, flies seem to be a necessary evil when dealing with horses.

There are several highly effective insecticide fly sprays on the market (ie. UltraShield Ex) that undoubtedly repel, and even kill, most insects….but is that something we want sprayed on our horses (or ourselves) on a daily basis?

Probably not.

Natural Fly Spray for Horses - DIY Recipe and Reviews from Savvy Horsewoman

While insecticides have their place (think hot summer horse show on a thin skinned, fussy mare), I’ve found that natural fly sprays can also be quite effective, and are a great step to reducing exposure to harmful chemicals.

Unfortunately the terms “natural” and “green” can mean almost anything these days, so it’s important to read the labels and find a brand that you’re comfortable with and, most importantly, works!

I’ve included a list of popular options to start your search, along with links to the reviews. If you have a sensitive skinned horse I highly recommend reading these.

Most of these brands include essential oils, which are awesome natural fly repellents. The DIY homemade recipe below also uses them to closely match these store-bought options.

Here are some of the top rated, natural fly spray for horses:

  • Pyranha Zero Bite All Natural Fly Spray – No pesticides, water-based, uses Geraniol. Read the Reviews
  • Absorbine UltraShield Green Natural Fly Repellent – Guaranteed up to 8 hours, uses essential oils. Read the Reviews 
  • Animal Legends Flicks Horse and Pet Spray – Concentrated (comes with sprayer), biodegradable. Read the Reviews 
  • Equisect Botanical Fly Repellent Rtu Spray – Uses botanical and essential oils of citronella, clove stem, and thyme. Read the Reviews 
  • Calm Coat Natural Repellent – Concentrated, uses a combination of citronella, eucalyptus and botanical oils. Read the Reviews
More From Savvy Horsewoman:  How to Boost Your Dressage Scores

Given the choice, I’m always happy to use a homemade option over store-bought.

If you’re looking for a quick fix,  my super Easy Homemade Fly Spray is a great choice. It uses apple cider vinegar and any other bug repelling ingredients you happen to have on hand.

The only downside is that the smell isn’t as pleasant as the store-bought brands, so it’s not as appealing for me to share with my horse.

Here is a more rider-friendly option (that smells great!)

Natural Fly Spray for Horses Recipe

Natural Fly Spray for Horses Recipe

Yield: 16 oz Bottle

This homemade, DIY natural fly spray recipe uses essential oils to deter flies, mosquitoes and other insects. It's great for riders too!



  1. Add all ingredients to the spray bottle, then fill to the top with water
  2. Shake well and spray on horses and riders as needed, being careful to avoid the eyes and nose
  3. Store in a cool, dark place
What’s your favorite natural fly spray for horses?

Natural Fly Spray for Horses - DIY Recipe and Reviews from Savvy Horsewoman


  1. Wendelyn
    May 18, 2016 / 6:39 am

    About a year ago I read somewhere about using Pine Sol (recipe called for a specific type as others don't use pine oils) in a mixture for fly spray. It uses the pine tree oil which is a natural insect repellant. What I found funny about it was that I have always thought that my commercially bought sprays smelled like pinesol before anyway. I now know why.

  2. tamar lask
    June 28, 2017 / 2:03 am

    why the vanilla extract?

    • savvyhorsewoman
      May 11, 2018 / 10:30 am

      It helps deter insects, and smells great!

  3. May 24, 2018 / 3:46 pm

    I love the Equiderma insect repellent. It has neem oil, so it’s a great (and safe) alternative to deet – works great to repel ticks. I use it on myself, too! Smells wonderful! I’m a huge fan of all the Equiderma products. All of them fit into a green routine for your horses.

  4. Debbie M
    February 19, 2020 / 12:07 pm

    Got anything that works really well for Mosquitoes?

  5. Barbara Kerr
    August 6, 2020 / 5:04 pm

    I have been using this recipe since the flies started this spring and love it. I blend 50 drops each of citronella, lemon grass, cedarwood, 25 drops of tea tree, lavender and peppermint. Everyone in the barn loves the way it smells!

  6. July 5, 2021 / 5:10 pm

    Is there any chance you can convert 150 drops into teaspoons or tablespoons? Sitting there and counting out that many drops for that many ingredients is a real turn-off.

    • Mara Picco
      June 9, 2022 / 3:18 pm

      There are approx.15 drops per ml, there are 5ml per tsp and 3 tsp (15ml) per tablespoon. I think that would be 2 tsp?

  7. Matt
    July 20, 2021 / 6:59 pm

    Has anyone tried an organic version of fly spray like from ? Looking for good reviews for something truly organic.

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