Organizations such as the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals report that cats and dogs, among other pets, are highly sensitive to everyday mosquito and bug repellents. What’s particularly concerning is the use of N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide, commonly called DEET. This compound reportedly causes tremors, seizures, and neurological conditions that may prove fatal to beloved four-legged family members. That’s why it’s essential to talk with your veterinarian about healthy pet-friendly ways to keep pets away, such as the following.
1: Employ Citrus Juice
One of the things mosquitoes cannot stand is the scent or taste of citrus. Pet-lovers can squeeze a ripe lemon and rub a little on their skin to deter mosquitoes from biting. You can also chop up a citrus fruit and boil the pieces in water. After bringing to a full boil, steep the liquid for an hour and use it as an insect repellent spray. If flying pests irritate the family dog or cat, spray a little on their coat and give them the relief they deserve.
2: Put Flora To Work Repelling Insects
There are certain plants that biting flies and mosquitoes dislike. The good news is human beings often enjoy their smell and pets remain comfortable around them. The following is a list worth considering.
- Citronella Grass
- Bee Balm
- Lemon Balm
Strategically placing potted plants on porches, decks, and patios can reduce the number of unwelcome insects. Planting things like basil, marigolds, and mint, among others, also deters bugs and varmints that harm vegetable gardens without impacting pets.
3: Rethink Bug Repelling Home Remedies
There are plenty of so-called home remedies used to rid homes of ants, roaches, and other bugs that pose a health risk to unsuspecting pets. For example, homeowners in rural areas use products such as Borax to reduce the number of crawlers infiltrating kitchens.
Mixing white, powdery Borax with confectioners’ sugar creates an attractive and deadly bait for carpenter ants. Unfortunately, the household cleaning product has a debilitating effect on family pets. Comprised of sodium borate, sodium tetraborate, or disodium tetraborate, it causes stomach problems and injures the kidneys if a significant amount is ingested. The point is to check the ingredients in these seemingly effective home remedies and determine whether they are pet-safe.
4: Deploy Alternative Pet-Safe Products
Pet-supporting companies have developed wide-reaching products that help humans get rid of insects without harming pets. For instance, a fossil-based product called Diatomaceous Earth targets bedbugs, fleas, and roaches, among others.
Property owners can sprinkle it on the ground, and insects suffer dehydration when they come in contact with the substance. The product is considered pet-safe, and some reports indicate it can be applied to their fur to deter parasites. That’s a win-win.
There are also effective sound devices that repel biting insects that may be suitable for homes with four-legged family members and citrus-based sprays that can cover your yard’s perimeter. It’s important not to employ popular chemical insect deterrents simply because they are perceived as effective. How they affect pet-life matters.