My Dog Ate An Ant Trap!
Dogs are known to get their paws on things they should not. No matter if the object is edible or not, our pups are not biased! So what if their item of choice is an ant trap, and what does that mean for their health?
In this article we will dive into the details of ant trap ingestion in dogs, and help you understand what this means for your furry friend!
Are Ant Traps Poisonous?
While these traps are extremely toxic to ants, they are not as toxic to our canine companions. Most ant traps do not contain enough of a toxic ingredient to seriously harm a dog, as these companies are aware that dogs may accidentally ingest them from time to time.
Most of these ant traps contain a small amount of the poisonous substance, and a large amount of the sweet content that attracts the ant in the first place. Even in the traps that do contain boric acid, it is typically a small amount that will only seriously impact the ant. The main cause of concern when a dog eats an ant trap is the plastic around the trap. We will discuss the dangers of plastic ingestion below.
Types Of Ant Bait Stations
Not all ant bait stations are created equal, meaning each one may have a different warning label for our furry friends. To help you better understand the product in your home, let’s discuss the different ant trap options.
- Raid ant traps: This bait contains 0.05% of avermectin as the main method of ant control
- Terro ant traps: This bait contains 5% Borax as the main method of ant control
- Enforcer ant traps: This bait uses abamectin as the main method of ant control
- Combat ant traps: This bait contains 0.001% fipronil as the main method of ant control
The main ingredients in these ant traps can be extremely toxic in large amounts, so it is still always important to keep them away from your pet at all times to be safe. Though the amount of chemicals in one ant trap may not be life threatening, there is a possibility of gastrointestinal upset and irritation.
Why Are Dogs Attracted To Ant Traps
Dogs are attracted to ant traps for the same reasons ants are; they smell sweet! Ant traps are made to attract crawling critters in search of food, so they have to smell enticing enough to lure the ants their way. Ant traps often contain sugar, bread crumbs, peanut butter, and more.
When you look at what goes into these critter traps, it makes perfect sense as to why our dogs are drawn to them.
What Should You Do If Your Dog Chewed On An Ant Trap
While we stated that most ant traps do not contain enough harmful chemicals to do serious damage, it does not mean they are completely risk free. To ensure your pets safety, let’s dive into our recommendations if your dog chews on an ant trap.
Contacting A Poison Helpline
Anytime your dog consumes a product that is not veterinary related, it is best to contact the Pet Poison Helpline. This poison helpline has a database of every product on the market, and how they can affect our furry friends. Our veterinarians cannot be aware of every single chemical within a product, making the insight from this helpline so important.
This hotline will provide you with a case number during your phone call, giving your veterinarian a direct line to speak with their toxicologists about your pet’s situation.
Contacting Your Veterinarian
If your dog ingests an ant trap, it is best to contact your veterinarian to be safe. Even if they state that the amount of chemicals in the product are not toxic, there are some other factors to be aware of. When a dog eats an ant trap, they generally consume the plastic that surrounds it as well. While the small amount of chemicals may not be life threatening, the plastic can be!
Be Aware Of The Plastic
The plastic surrounding an ant trap is the most dangerous part of the trap for our canine companions. Plastic can break into sharp pieces as our dogs chew, leading to potential injury in their mouth and GI tract. These pieces can be extremely painful as they move throughout their intestines, and can even cause a life threatening blockage in some cases.
Just because our dogs may be in the clear when it comes to the ingredients in the trap, it does not mean the trap isn’t dangerous at all. Though you should contact your veterinarian no matter what in this situation, you should definitely seek medical attention if your dog consumes the plastic.
What Symptoms Should You Watch For
So what symptoms should you look out for if your dog licks or eats an ant trap? While we always suggest contacting your vet the moment your dog gets their paws on the trap, we will dive into some potential signs of complications below.
Ant traps typically have a small amount of chemicals that may not lead to serious side effects, but they can cause gastrointestinal upset. The likelihood of these symptoms are increased with the amount of ant traps that are consumed, and if the dog eats the plastic part of the trap as well.
Pet Safe Ant Killers
If you are looking for an ant killer option that is not harmful to our pets, there are a few options to consider. First, you can start with products that come in gel form and are free of any plastic. These gel ant killers allow you to apply them to affected areas of your home. They may also contain less chemicals than standard ant traps.
Another option you can consider is using natural insect repellent sprays. These sprays typically use herbs and oils that are known to repel insects, and are safe to use in a home with pets. These options may not be able to tackle a serious ant problem, but can typically keep small infestations at bay.
As you can see, the chemicals in standard ant traps are not the main danger to worry about. The plastic is the biggest culprit, and can cause serious complications for your furry friend. Be sure to review the information we discussed above, and you can keep your dog safe in the future!
My name is Amber. I am a dedicated animal lover that turned my passion into my career. I am a Licensed Vet Tech with 10 years of experience in veterinary medicine, but I recently took my career online to help spread accurate information on animal care. With how vast the online world is, I have a strong desire to ensure that the reader always walks away with helpful pet advice. With the experience I’ve gained from my time in this field, I have been able to travel the world, offering my services to as many animal rescues as I can find. If I am not at my laptop, or back home visiting family, you can find me somewhere in the world, cuddling every furry friend that I can find! Read more about us here.