(Article not recommended for ant lovers)
It’s that time of year again - all of the pesky little bugs are coming out of the woodwork - literally! In our house anyway! Our main problem area being our kitchen. Having a 2 year old and a 9 month old, there tends to be a lot of crumbs making their way to the floors. And though we try to keep on top of the vacuuming, the ants still come.
While we considered calling a pest control company to come and spray, having 3 dogs and 2 kids constantly crawling all over the floors led us to research more natural and safe solutions (not to mention cheaper ones as well!)
Here are our 5 personal favorite kid and dog friendly options we found!
DIY ANT sprays:
1. SOAP and WATER ( how simple and easy is that?!): Add about 10-30 drops (or desired amount) of dish soap (soap of your choice) to warm water in your favorite spray bottle and spray away! Boom - kills on contact as well as helps remove the ant trail scent. Easy peasy!
2. ESSENTIAL OILS and WATER (also simple!): Oils such as eucalyptus, peppermint, tea tree, lemon, orange, clove, cinnamon, lemongrass etc work very well at repelling ants! Just add your favorite oil to water in a spray bottle and you’ve got another great ant spray! You can combine different oils together as well! (Peppermint, citrus and tea tree is a great combo) We all know there are many different kinds of oils out there on the market. Use the brand and drop amount that works best for YOU! Do your research and make your spray as safe and as natural as YOU want ;) There is some controversy out there regarding possible toxicity to dogs with certain oils - if this is a concern you have, then this spray may not be the best option for you. Consult with your favorite oil expert prior to using!
3. APPLE CIDER VINEGAR and WATER:
Simply combine 50/50 vinegar to water in a spray bottle! This kills on contact and will remove the ant trail scent for others.
4. DIATOMACEOUS EARTH (also known as D.E., diatomite, or kieselgur/kieselguhr): can usually be found in your local hardware store, tractor supply or order it online! What is D.E? It is fossilized remains of tiny, aquatic organisms called diatoms and is known to be kid and dog safe! It can be applied dry or wet. but must be dry to work. It cuts through their shells and dehydrates the ants it comes in contact with.
Dry D.E.: apply with a duster for small cracks and tricky areas while larger areas can be covered using a device such as a flour sifter.
Wet D.E.: add 1 part with 3-4 parts water in a spray bottle and shake vigorously to ensure D.E is evenly distributed.
5. COFFEE GROUNDS (any other coffee lovers out there?!): sprinkle grounds at points of entry or directly onto ant hills outside. This is a slower working solution and will not kill ants instantly, however, it does work well at repelling them over time! ( If your pup has an interest in eating coffee grounds, this may not be the best option for you!)
We hope you find this information to be helpful! These are simply our own personal methods we have found to be successful solutions and wanted to share them with you! Keep in mind that water and wood don’t go well together - be smart about how and where you apply your sprays! ;)
Do you have a favorite natural ant repellent that works?! Share yours below! We’d love to hear from you!