How to Kill Ants in a Bag of Dog Food

Set the dog's food dish in a shallow bowl filled with water to prevent ants from climbing inside.
Set the dog's food dish in a shallow bowl filled with water to prevent ants from climbing inside. (Image: Jupiterimages/ Images)

An open bag of dog food provides an enticing meal that no dog, or ant, can resist. Once the ants have invaded the food the dog may reject it, causing you to throw away the dog food and waste money on another bag. Eliminating the unwanted invaders from your dog’s food can be done safely and effectively to ensure that your pooch is enjoying its next meal ant-free.

Things You'll Need

  • Large, shallow plastic container
  • Corn starch
  • Rubber gloves
  • Hand vacuum
  • Lidded plastic tote

Pour the contents of the dog food into a large plastic container, such as an under-the-bed plastic storage tote. The container should be large enough that the dog food can be spread out and examined.

Sprinkle the dog food with a layer of corn starch. The corn starch is safe for the animal, but will prove deadly when ingested by the ants.

Allow the corn starch to remain for one to two hours. Once the ants have ingested the corn starch and died, pick through the dog food and remove as many dead ants as possible. If you are squeamish about this process, wear a pair of rubber gloves.

Run a hand vacuum over the top of the dog food to remove some of the corn starch and any remaining ants. Do not use a regular-sized vacuum because it is larger and will suck up the kibble along with the corn starch.

Store the ant-free dog food in a lidded plastic tote. This will protect the dog’s food from any future ant infestations.

Tips & Warnings

  • Protect the plastic tote from ants even further by covering the outside with a coating of talcum powder or peppermint oil. Both of these will kill the ants without harming your pet.

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