We have a pet guinea pig and a rabbit that we let out into our fenced yard. Fire ants stung both of them. We want to protect our pets from the ants, but we don’t want to use pesticides that will make the animals sick. Is there a natural way to get rid of ants in the yard?
Denise Diaz, Louisville, KY
I’m sorry to hear fire ants harmed your pets. I can see why the ants are a problem for you. It may be harder to keep them out of your yard instead of your house, but let’s give it a try.
The first thing to do is survey your yard for ant attractions. Do you eat outside? You may want to limit this activity because leftover crumbs of any food can attract fire ants. Don’t even feed your pets in the yard.
Also, check your garbage to make sure it’s sealed tightly. And be sure to clean your grill well after every use. Don’t leave out food or grease that will invite those little invaders.
Now, for the next step, it’s time to repel ants. You can do this in several ways. To see every possibility, take a look at this article: https://www.tipsbulletin.com/natural-ant-remedies-how-to-get-rid-of-ants/
Some people have success in burning a fire ant hill as one of the natural ways to get rid of ants. You could also drown them in boiling water. Both methods may require multiple applications as ants dig deeply into the ground and have an intricate tunnel system.
In summary, there are several natural ant-repelling products you probably have at home. Many of these won’t be a danger to your pets, although some of them (like spices) might irritate them. Check with your vet to be sure.
You can make a simple natural ant deterrent out of one part vinegar and one part water. Spray that around the yard before your pets go out to play. Citrus juices and oils work well, too.
Spices like black pepper, cinnamon, mint, and chili pepper are natural ant repellents. Since you have pets, don’t use cayenne pepper. It’s a good deterrent, but it is irritating to both eyes and skin.
Now I hope you find a natural way to kill ants in your yard. Good luck!