I have a gnat problem in my litter box. I just recently bought a Litter Maid. The waste bin is filled with gnats. I did not have this problem before I got the new box. I change the waste bin everyday trying to get control on the gnats, but they are taking over my house. What can I do to get rid of them without hurting my cats? Is there a spray or something I can use to get rid of them?
Rhonda from TN
It's more likely fruit flies than gnats. They're tiny and there are two types. But gnats can happen, too. If they're slightly fat, but still tiny, definitely fruit flies (if they're at all longer than wide).
For fruit flies, the best thing i've ever found you can buy at a hardware store (Sears is the best place for them). It's a sticky trap that is short (about 8 inches tall) and wide (about 6 inches wide), yellow, with four "lobes" of sticky stuff. Hang that up, put a piece of cantaloupe, peach, jam, or something sweet on each little "shelf" between the sticky bits. (Google "EZ Trap). Put it up where your cats can't get to it and where you won't bonk your head on it.
Another alternative, is wine-bottle or milk-carton traps. You can try various things (cider vinegar, a bit of wine, mayonnaise, ketchup) inside a wine bottle or milk carton. You can even leave a little milk in there, they love that, the nasty things. Then put a paper funnel (like you get at a gas station for doing your oil) in the top. Flies get in, can't get out. Just toss when you're done.
We haven't had as much luck with that as the EZ-trap and we've tried a lot of different things, including other sticky traps. It's definitely the best.
Switch the bait out, see what draws them. They're eating and drinking the moisture and nutrients in the cat box and even the little bit in the wastebin. Fruitflies can literally live for a short time on just alcohol fumes, so it's hard to get rid of them. Also take all used litter and tempting (to them) trash outside in a sealed plastic bag immediately for a while. That helps. Good luck! (09/10/2007)
I have the same automatic cat box and never had any gnats, what kind of kitty litter do you use? How many cats use the box? I use Fresh Step kitty litter and I have 4 cats using my one box. I line the dumping tray with a plastic grocery bag and when I come home after working all day I just toss the bag outside in the trash. I replace the bag and add more litter. I also vacuum under and around cat box twice a week. I clean out the whole cat box once a month. I hope this helps you out. (09/12/2007)
http://www.alaskaoutdoorjournal.com has a multitude of hints and solutions for getting rid of everything from gnats, to flies, to yellow jackets. Check this out, I'll bet it will solve your problem. (09/13/2007)
I know me and my soap water, but it does work for a lot of things. I just had fruit flies for a little while, when I brought in my onions after I thought they was dry. I did end up with fruit flies because some of them was not dry and started to rot. I just spayed them with soap water and you see them drop to the floor. (09/13/2007)
They may not be fruit flies, but a different type of fly called Phorid flies. They breed in places with dead or decaying organic matter (sinks, garbage disposals, trash cans, litter boxes, etc.). Use a foaming drain cleaner or bleach or a strong cleaning agent to get rid of them. (11/24/2008)
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