How to Get Rid of Ants When You Have a Dog or Cat in the House

Need to know how to get rid of ants fast without harming Fido? We've got you covered.

Ants are absolute pests that can invade your home, wreaking havoc on your health and happiness. While there are plenty of poisons out there to kill ants in their tracks, most contain a cocktail of chemicals that are just as dreadful to your beloved pets. If you want to learn how to get rid of ants without harming your dog or cat, we’ve got you covered.

Speaking of pets, check out these 14 cleaning tips every dog or cat owner should know.

The first step in learning how to get rid of ants, whether you have animals in your home, is don’t make your home attractive to the ants in the first place. That means keeping your kitchen cabinets and floors void of crumbs, which the workers ants seek out and bring back to their queen and her kin.

Here’s how ants know there are crumbs on your floor.

It can be hard to keep track of every tiny drop of food, though. So if you’re a cleaning machine and still come home to a kitchen swarming with ants, then you’ll want to learn how to bait the workers ants.

Do you have flying ants or termites? Here’s the difference.

First identify the trail of workerswhere they’re coming from and what food source they’re going to. Now, place ant bait stations along this trail. Not all bait is pet-friendly, however!

Finding Pet Safe Ant Killer

To be safe, the EPA suggests using low toxicity stations that won’t harm your pets. You can try Combat products, which are specifically designed to target ants while also having a low order of toxicity in animals including house pets. The insecticide mixture within the stations isn’t easily accessible to pets, but to be on the safe side, make sure the stations are placed behind appliances, in the back of cabinets, and generally out of reach from your curious critters. Don’t place the bait stations near your pet’s toys, food and water areas.

Here’s how to ant-proof your hummingbird feeder.

What to Look for with Pet Friendly Ant Killer

A common ingredient to look out for in pet-safe ant killers is diatomaceous earth, which contains the fossilized remains of small aquatic organisms called diatoms. It looks like an off-white talc powder, with the main ingredient being silica. The FDA considers diatomaceous earth to be “generally recognized as safe.” Just be sure you choose a product labeled as “food-grade” when purchasing, as this means it’s gone through a purification process.

For a minor infestation, soak a large absorbent sponge in sugar water. Place it near the ant trail and let it sit for a day. Wash off the dead ants, soak in more sugar water and place back near the trail until you no longer see any dead ants when squeezing out the sponge.

Want to DIY your own pet products? Check out these 15 clever creations you can make at home.

Watch this video for some super-simple solutions for keeping ants out of your house:

Alexa Erickson
Alexa is an experienced lifestyle and news writer, currently working with Reader's Digest, Shape Magazine and various other publications. She loves writing about her travels, health, wellness, home decor, food and drink, fashion, beauty and scientific news. Follow her traveling adventures on Instagram: @living_by_lex, send her a message: [email protected] and check out her website: livingbylex.com