How To Keep Ants Out of Dog Food

A small dog cautiously approaching a full bowl of food.

Ants in your dog’s food can be a serious and incredibly persistent problem.

Whether ants are getting to food stores or into the food bowl, they are not only gross but pose health risks to your dog. 

How do you keep ants out of dog food? Immediately upon opening a package of dog food, transfer the contents to an airtight, pest-proof container for storage. Keep the food indoors in an elevated location if possible. Only feed your dog as much as he’ll eat in one meal and wash the bowl after each use.

Dog food isn’t exactly cheap, and it can be quite discouraging to find that a nearly full bag of food has been infested with ants.

In the following, you’ll learn several ways to keep ants out of your pet’s food and how to maintain the freshness of the food longer.

Keeping Ants Out of Dog Food Containers

Ants can be a real nuisance, and they are amazingly persistent when it comes to locating and invading food sources.

Unfortunately, dog food is on their list of favorite foods.

You don’t have to lose the battle though. Simply work through the following steps, and soon your ant problem will be a thing of the past.

Buy Smaller Bags of Food

Most experts advise that dog food be stored in the package it came in until you are ready to open it.

This is because dog food can spoil very quickly and easily in the wrong kind of container. Dog food bags are made specifically to manage moisture levels and keep pests out.

If you’re having trouble storing opened food, it may be a good idea to try smaller bags.

Choose Containers That Seal Completely

Many plastic containers seem like they would be fine for storing dog food, but there isn’t a pest-proof seal to prevent determined ants from entering.

Therefore, it’s best to choose a container that is designed for pet food and has the right kind of seal to keep pests out.

Keep Containers off of the Ground

Containers that are slightly raised off the ground or have a divided platform make it much more difficult for ants to figure out how to get from the ground onto the container.

They may smell food above them, but they may not be able to work out how to go up the limited access points.

Store Food Indoors

Storing food outdoors allows ants to continuously try to get to it, which makes it much more likely that they will eventually succeed.

Furthermore, fluctuations in moisture and temperature can make containers fail sooner and cause food to spoil more easily. 

Store dog food indoors and in an elevated area, like on a shelf in a high cabinet, if possible.

Use Ant Bait Traps 

If you are still having trouble with ants seeking out your dog’s food even after following all of these steps and choosing quality containers, you can opt to use bait traps, like these from Amazon, in the area that your food is stored.

Simply break off the tab, and place the trap close to where you store the dog food.

The sweet liquid inside the trap will attract ants in droves while the borax goes to work killing them. 

TERRO T300B Liquid Ant Bait Ant Killer, 12 Bait...

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Be very careful to choose a location that your dog, other pets, and children will not be able to access.

Selecting the right dog food can be confusing. Learn what exactly to look for and how to decipher the ingredient list in our Ultimate Guide to Dog Food and Treats.

Keeping Ants Out of Dog Food Bowls 

Keeping dog food safe from pests when stored in a container isn’t the only concern. Ants have an uncanny knack for finding and invading your dog’s food bowl too.

Here are some tips to keep it free of ants while your dog eats.

  • Choose food bowls that are raised up off of the ground.
  • Only put down as much food as your dog will eat in a sitting.
  • Feed your dog in novel places so ants can’t form colonies near the bowl.
  • Thoroughly wash the bowl after each meal to remove any crumbs that will attract ants.
  • Place the food bowl on a rimmed baking sheet or within a large, shallow bowl. Fill the outer container with water to form an ant-blocking moat around the dog food. 

Products to Keep Ants Out of Dog Food 

It is recommended that dog food be stored in the package in which it was purchased until it is opened.

Dog food bags are specifically designed to keep food fresh and to keep out pests, moisture, and contaminants. 

However, once opened, dog food bags generally don’t do a very good job of keeping out pests and contaminants. 

Even bags that have Velcro, slider-zippers, or other closures aren’t usually as effective as they claim to be.

Therefore, you’ll want to put food into a sealable container once the container is opened.

Keep in mind that no matter where you store your dog food, ants are likely to be attracted once the container is opened.

Dog food has a very strong smell that is highly attractive to ants and will motivate them to find it wherever you put it.

Therefore, it is important to choose a container that completely prevents ants from getting into the food.

Vittles Vault Pet Food Container

Gamma2 Vittles Vault Outback Stackable 40 lb...

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This container is designed to keep food as fresh as it would have been in the unopened bag.

It has an airtight closure and moisture control that keeps food completely fresh until your dog is ready to eat it. 

The stackable system also works with other Vittles Vault products, so you can easily store all of your dog food and treats in one matching system.

You can feel confident that these heavy-duty containers made of food-grade plastic won’t shatter. 

Pros:

  • Holds up to 40 pounds.
  • Patented airtight sealing system keeps out moisture and air. 
  • Pest proof.
  • Stackable for maximum space efficiency
  • Will not shatter if dropped.
  • Wide opening works well for scooping out food or accessing treats.

Cons:

  • Relatively unattractive design and color.
  • Screw top is difficult for some people to open.

IRIS Airtight Container Combo

IRIS USA 3 Piece Airtight Pet Food Storage...

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This convenient little container combo is the perfect thing to store your dog’s food and treats while keeping them safe from ants.

The wheels elevate the containers off of the floor, making it less accessible to ants. 

An airtight seal keeps in freshness and prevents insects or moisture from getting to the food.

The containers stack easily, keeping them together and saving space. Iris also makes a number of other containers that may also stack with these. 

The BPA-free plastic is completely clear, which makes it very easy for you to see what’s inside and know when you’re running low but may also risk exposing the food to light unless you store it in a dark place. 

Pros:

  • Clear plastic makes it easy to keep track of contents.
  • Reasonably priced.
  • Two stackable containers – one for food and another for treats and supplements.
  • Easy to move around. 
  • Elevated.
  • Airtight.

Cons:

  • Wheels may accumulate dust and debris, making them more difficult to roll.
  • Clear plastic lets in light, which may cause food to spoil. 

Simplehuman X-Large Pet Food Storage Can

simplehuman 35 Liter, 40 lb / 18.1 kg X-Large Pet...

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Do you may want a dog food storage container that looks great in your kitchen while also completely protecting food from pests and from your dog’s attempts to get to it? 

This intelligent design keeps pets and pests out while making it easy for you to access the food.

The removable interior bin is made of food-safe, BPA-free plastic and is a breeze to wash when the time comes. 

This container will look very snazzy in your kitchen with the smudge-proof stainless steel design.  The front handle and hidden back wheels make it easy to maneuver around. 

Pros:

  • Beautiful, smudge-resistant brushed stainless steel design.
  • Hidden back wheels and a front handle make it easy to move.
  • Separate food bin provides an extra layer of protection from ants and other pests.
  • Included scoop stores in lid of the container. 
  • Handle locks tightly to keep pests out, maintains an airtight seal, and makes it easy to open.

Cons:

  • More expensive than other options.
  • Not stackable – takes up floor space.

Last update on 2020-12-01 at 18:30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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