Dear Daisy Dog
Ants invade our home every spring, and I’d like to hide a few ant motels around the house. Our dog, a Labrador-Saint Bernard mix, sometimes eats things he shouldn’t. How toxic are ant motels?
For us dogs, not very. Please tell your dog, however, that I think it is quite undignified to dine from anything other than a fancy bowl.
Most ant baits contain peanut butter, sugar or breadcrumbs to attract ants and an insecticide to kill them.
It’s easy to understand how some of the bait’s ingredients might entice your dog.
Commonly used insecticides are avermectin, boric acid, fipronil, hydramethylnon and sulfluramid. Ant baits contain relatively small amounts, which rarely cause problems when dogs ingest them.
However, if your dog eats the plastic or metal “motel,” he runs the risk of an intestinal obstruction.
So my advice is to place ant baits in locations that ants – but not pets – can reach.
Retain the carton so, if your dog does eat one, you can call the veterinarian immediately with the name of the chemical and a physical description of the product.