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Ant traps safe around kittens?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My yearly ant visitors are here in my kitchen (usually Nov/Dec when it is very cold out). Usually keeping the floor clear of crumbs and putting down the ant traps takes care of it but... now we have the cat. They are on his placement and in his food bowl. I moved them to the counter (nice training... stay off the counter, no come and eat on the counter... talk about confusing).

Anyhow, I cannot leave a "food source" on the floor. I am assuming those ant traps are safe around my cat since my kids have touched them and not gotten sick or died.
post #2 of 9
I used to live in Ant City (also known as L.A. suburbs) and found a nontoxic way of getting rid of the critters:

Murphy's Oil Soap kills the ants directly when sprayed on them. It's better than Raid. and erases their scent trails. It also has the added advantage of cleaning the floor. It won't hurt your cat.

Ants apparently do not like cayenne pepper; I have heard that this can be sprinkled around entrance ways. The cat won't like it either and will avoid it.

You can find cat bowls that are raised off the floor. They are on legs but you can put ant repellent on the legs.

And maybe feeding the cat dry food til the ants are gone so there is less odor, will stop attracting the critters.

Closed ant traps would be best put somewhere where the cat cant' reach them. They could be mistaken for toys.

Good luck.
post #3 of 9
If your cat plays hockey with them, he could dislodge the insecticide and inadvertently expose himself. That could indeed be toxic. I would try and place them out of the way if he is prone to doing that sort of thing.
post #4 of 9
You can use Diatomaceous Earth for insect control.

If you sprinkle it where the ants come in it will do two things.

Diatomaceous Earth
Safe as Sand but Lethal to Insects

Diatomaceous Earth, which is also called DE or silicon dioxide, is as chemically inert as road dust, but when properly used, it is very effective against insect pests. Unlike ‘chemical insecticides’ of the last half of the 20th Century, DE is a ‘physical’ or ‘mechanical’ insecticide.
Knowledge of one fact about insects and two facts about DE is required in order to understand how DE can be safe to humans and yet very effective in killing insects.

Insects control their body moisture by means of a complex ‘waxy’ coating on the outside of their exoskeletons, i.e., their shells. This coating is naturally porous, which permit slow loss of water and evaporation. If the waxy coating is damaged, the insect suffers serious injury.

DE is made up of ancient skeletal remains of diatoms. These one-celled creatures have hard, sharp structures that are small enough to cut or pierce the insect’s waxy coating. But the structures are so small that DE feels as soft as baby powder to humans.

DE is also an excellent absorbent that is used in cleaning oils spills or kitty litter. This strong absorbency literally sucks the life fluid from insects. Because this is a mechanical process, DE can be literally effective forever.

DE is not toxic to warm blooded or higher animals such as mammals or birds.
post #5 of 9
the problem with diatomaceous earth is that it stays on the floor. I was in one house where the ants came through holes in the walls and in my apartment in LA they marched mindlessly in circles on the ceiling. The Murphy's soap could be sprayed anywhere.
post #6 of 9
I was having the same problem. My friend told me to wipe vinegar along the doorway (they were coming from under the door). It smelt for a bit (however it does go away) and havn't seen them since! Could be a fluke who knows but it's a cheap method to give a whirl and it wont hurt kitty =) (my cats jsut sniffed it for awhile then lost interest)

vinegar ruins their scent trail so it should keep them away unless another scout finds you again. But if you reapply once in awhile it should keep them out.

I only applied it once but have since moved the kitty dishes upstairs so I am assuming if one did make it back it didnt find the cat food so never left a trail for more to follow.
post #7 of 9
orange oil also works in keeping ants away.

as far as the food dish. fill a pie or cake pan with water. invert a bowl and place it in the water and then put your cats dish on the inverted bowl... or better yet get a cake roll pan, larger with shallow sidies and place water in that and then put in the bowl

your cat can stretch to get the food but the ants won't cross the water to get the cat food. am i making sense?
post #8 of 9
<<They are on his placement and in his food bowl. I moved them to the counter (nice training... stay off the counter, no come and eat on the counter... talk about confusing).>>

Actually, you could put his food bowls inside a larger bowl filled with water. The ant's cant get to it then, and kitty doesn't have to eat on the counter.

Ant traps: The active ingredient in most ant traps is an extremely low percentage of ivermectin (1/100th). (Look on the label, it will tell you.) Ivermectin is used in both cats and dogs as a de-wormer... it can be deadly to cats at high dosages, but the dosage in an ant trap is not high enough to hurt your cat. Could you tape your ant traps to the floor, leaving the little holes open so that the ants can still get in? That would decrease the likelihood of him playing with it, and thus getting it open.
post #9 of 9
If you put the cat food on the counter, the ants will simply progress to the counter. This is confusing to the cat and doesn't solve the ant problem.

The bowl in the water idea combined with diatomaceous earth and orange/Murphy cleaners will be more productive, as long as the cat doesn't mind having his food in the water.

Oh, and ants can swim very well.
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