How to Get Rid of Roaches Without Hurting My Cats

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The German cockroach is the most common cockroach.
The German cockroach is the most common cockroach. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Roaches, also known as cockroaches, are the most common insect pest infesting homes, according to Mike Potter, Extension Entomologist at the University of Kentucky. Many people associate roaches with filth. Moreover, roaches are capable of transmitting disease organisms, including bacteria that cause food poisoning. Common removal methods include the use of insecticides and poison baits. These methods can be dangerous if you have cats, however, because cats might eat or lick the toxins. Fortunately, there are ways to get rid of roaches without hurting your cat.

Reduce food sources. Roaches need food to survive, if they do not have access to food, they will move on. Seal all food containers, clean up any spills, remove grease and crumbs from food appliances, take out the trash frequently, vacuum crumbs off the floor and avoid leaving dishes in the sink unwashed.

Reduce water sources. Along with food, roaches need water to survive. Eliminate water sources by tightening loose pipes, drying out sinks and bathtubs after use, wiping refrigerators dry, emptying your cat's water dish and not over-watering plants.

Eliminate entrances. Somehow, roaches are getting into your home. Seal cracks and other openings, use weather stripping on doors and windows, and consider keeping a layer of gravel 6 to 12 inches wide around the perimeter of your home.

Setup sticky bait. Sticky baits, unlike poisons and insecticide dusts, will not harm your cat. Sticky baits include a powerful glue and simply trap the roach until it dies. To be effective, place sticky traps in areas where roaches are likely to wander over them. You can find these places by looking for accumulation of fecal matter (dark spots or smears), egg cases or dead roaches.

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