Springtime is an irritating season for pet owners who deal with an ant infestation. During this season, ants come out of their dwelling and march on to find food sources inside your home.
And like any other food, cat food is attractive to these opportunist creatures. So, if you leave your pet’s food in the open, it would be teeming with ants in less than a minute.
As much as you don’t like ants in your food, your feline friend doesn’t like them either. These pests could contaminate the food, bite your cat, spoil its appetite, and even carry diseases.
Because of these, you should take the proper measures to prevent ants from getting into your cat’s food. To help you deal with this problem, we have enumerated several techniques to keep them out of it.
Clean up after your pet eats
If you don’t want ants to find their way into your cat’s food, then don’t give them easy access to it. That means you shouldn’t leave eatables in the open.
After your feline eats, you should immediately collect the leftovers, keep them in a sealed container, and clean the feeding area.
If you don’t leave crumbs on the floor, ants won’t be able to smell them and get to your pet’s eatables.
Regularly wash your cat’s food bowl
Once your pet has finished eating, you should wash its bowl to ensure that it’s clean and hygienic. Not only that but cleaning the bowl is also essential to ensure that no crumbs are left in it.
Additionally, this procedure will also get rid of pheromones in case a few ants have made their way into the cat food. Pheromones are chemical scents that ants leave so that other ants can track the edibles.
Keep cat food in a plastic container with a lid
It’s not a good idea to keep your cat food in its original packaging, especially if it’s just a bag. Instead of finding eatables in the tray, ants may immediately get into the original packaging and spoil it. You wouldn’t want to serve your cat with degraded food, wouldn’t you?
Hence, you must transfer your cat food supply in a sealed container and secure place. This makes it impossible for ants to find and access it.
Likewise, you should also keep any leftovers in a container with a lid. That way, it won’t go to waste, and your cat can still eat it later. At the same time, ants won’t be able to find the edibles and invade your home.
Create a moat around your pet’s food tray
Making a moat around your cat’s food bowl is one of the most popular techniques to keep ants out of any food.
- Clean your pet’s food bowl thoroughly using a sponge and dish soap. This will remove food bits, and scents, and ensure that your pet’s tray is clean.
- Clean the feeding area. Start by vacuuming the parts around your pet’s tray to suck up eatables, crumbs, and debris. After which, use a sponge and detergent to clean the area. You may also use vinegar and lemon juice to eliminate pheromones and fend off ants.
- Find a container that’s larger than your pet’s food tray. This is where you will place the water and the food bowl. You can use whatever kind of container, like a pan, skillet, or cake tray. Whatever you choose, make sure that it can hold water and has at least 1 inch of space from the edge of the food bowl.
- Place the food bowl inside the larger bowl. If the tray is too shallow, you may elevate it using a woodblock or a flat object. In case the outer container is too large, you can move the food tray close to the edge. In this way, your cat can easily reach it, but ants won’t be able to cross it.
- Add water to the outer container. Doing this step after you have placed the pet bowl inside allows you to place just the right amount of water. Adding essential oil, lemon juice, or vegetable oil to the water may help deter ants better.
Once you’ve proven this to be effective in preventing them from infesting cat food, you can continue doing it. Just make sure that you regularly change the water and wash both the outer container and tray.
Switch your pet’s feeding area
You probably won’t completely eliminate the pheromone trail of ants. Because of this, they can keep finding their way back to your cat’s feeding area.
If this is the case, you may opt to change your pet’s feeding area so that ants have to search for it again. But, you should pair it with a deep cleaning to ensure that both areas are free from food crumbs and ant scents.
Apply deterring agents around your cat’s food tray
You can use various products to deter ants. Here’s a list of things you can use as a barrier around cat food to keep ants from getting in it.
- Essential oils
- Lemon juice
- Vaseline or Petroleum jelly
- Coffee grounds, powdered cinnamon, chili powder, or ash
An ant infestation is a problem that is not new to many pet owners. This is mainly because they often leave their pet’s food in the open, thereby attracting ants.
If you’re guilty of this, then this is your chance to change that. By keeping ants out of cat food, you can make sure that your cat can enjoy its meal.