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Avoiding Ants in Your Kitchen: the Dos and Don'ts

Table with buffet of food

Although the ants you’ll commonly encounter are essentially harmless (they don’t carry disease and they rarely bite or sting humans), they are definitely annoying. And what’s more embarrassing than inviting guests to your home and seeing a trail of ants running through your kitchen?

But there are many ways you can avoid running into this problem. Here are some of the dos and don’ts to prevent an ant invasion in your kitchen:

DO remember the ant’s primary goal: food

Most pests have one singular goal: find food. Ants are no different, so keep that in mind at all times. Anything you can do to limit the prevalence of available food for ants will be helpful.

DON’T give ants easy access to your home

Ants are very small, and therefore can fit through the tiniest of entryways into your home. Check your walls for cracks and ensure your windows and doors have tight seals. Any openings you find should be closed up with caulking.

DO keep the kitchen clean

This is one of the best ways to ensure your kitchen stays ant-free: clean it regularly! You need to wipe down counter and tabletops every day, to get rid of food remnants. Also, sweep the floor every night, and mop at least once a week. Even piled up dishes in the sink can be enough to attract ants, so wash them every night. Cleanliness is a great defense against all pests.

DON’T forget to take out the trash

Your garbage can should be under the sink or have a lid on it, but it should also be taken out on a nightly basis. A full garbage can is not only enticing to ants, it can also be inviting to cockroaches as well.

DO store leftovers and other foods

Any exposed food (such as cereal, potato chips, cookies) needs to be enclosed in airtight containers, even if it’s hidden away in the pantry. Leftovers should also be stored in the refrigerator immediately.

DON’T leave Fido’s bowl out overnight

Ants aren’t picky when it comes to food, and will happily partake in your pet’s kibble. Put your pet’s food away at the end of the night to eliminate another possible food source.