White Dog shares my frustration over the sugar ant invasion that is overrunning our house. Initially invited in by Michael and fed by his secret food stash they were happy for quite a while living under his bed...until Steve discovered the food and remains and made him thoroughly clean his space and spray to eliminate the problem.
Well, spraying did sort of eliminate the problem...in Michael's room. The ants simply went hunting for a new food source and have explored the bathroom (directly above Michael's room) where Quinn likes to sleep. Our poor gentle boy has had the six-legged pests climb up on his long white furs and make themselves at home. We brush him out and use a non-toxic herbal repellent but the effect is temporary.
The sugar ant horde has also found its way into the kitchen where they are a nightmare on the counters and getting into the White Dog Army's bowls. The food bowls are picked up and washed after meals but are still subject to investigation for food possibilities by the ants who get stuck once inside on the slippery stainless sides. The water dishes must be constantly sieved to remove the bugs who tried to use the drinking bowls as swimming pools.
We do not use harmful chemicals any place where the White Dog Army may be placed in danger, including the upstairs. My vinegar-based herbal spray works but requires constant reapplication to maintain its deterrent effect. The bug guy who sprays our perimeter came in and applied "Gourmet Ant Gel" which the ants were supposed to eat and carry down to home base and wipe out the community, but it's success was limited.
Steve has declared war and is planning a strategy that stops just short of dousing every surface in the house with exoskeleton melting acid. Someone laughingly suggested today that perhaps the best (and easiest) solution is to simply allow Michael to restock his under bed food treasure-trove and reopen the endless ant buffet.
Steve and White Dog got a chuckle out of that thought...and then their expressions became serious as they weighed the possibility.
In these buggie encounters I recall what was once a fun game I played with my then five year-old niece when she called me, "Aunt Sue." "I can't be ant Sue," I would tease. "Why not?" "Well, how many legs do ants have?" I would ask her. She would think hard and sometimes would run for her book about nature and turn to the picture of the ant. She would count and look up beaming. "Six!" "Right! And how many legs do I have?" "Two, Aunt Sue!" "So you see I cannot be an ant!"
As I smack an uninvited rider on my t-shirt I wonder if wearing ants WOULD make me Ant-y Sue.