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Get Rid Of Snails Naturally

Written by Hilary on February 27th, 2007

Many people want to get rid of snails in their yard, but they have pets, an outside cat or a dog, so they hesitate to use any chemical-based snail baits.

Not a problem – use dry dog or cat food to lure snails away from your plants.

I actually forgot about this trick, but last week I set out a dish of dry cat food for a neighbor’s cat, and the next morning it was filled to the brim with snails.

What you can do is:

1. Get a tin foil pie pan and cut a few notches along the rim so that when you set it on the ground you have created a few “doors” for the snails to come in

2. Pour some dry cat or dog food where you want the snails to come

3. Put the tin foil pan upside down and weight it down with a rock

4. Next morning, you can scoop up the snails and get rid of them. I tend to put them in a bag and toss the in the trash

If you have never tried this, do. It’s fast, easy, and if you already have dry dog or cat food, inexpensive!

 

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11 Comments so far ↓

  1. Angie says:

    Thanks for the idea. I don’t worry a lot about slugs, but occasionally if they are really gnawing on something I will put out a dish of beer, but I would much rather waste some cat food than some perfectly good beer! I will definitely give this a try this summer.

  2. weeder1 says:

    Chickens are the best snail defense but not everyone wants a chicken, or can even own one. Beer is a good method. I wouldn’t use the cat food because the raccoons and opossums would find that delightful. Raccoons are very cute but can become pests.

  3. Hilary says:

    Hi Cheryl,

    You bring up a good point. It depends where you live and if opossum or racoons are a problem in your area.

    I agree, chickens are great, we had several and never had any slugs, snails, frogs or much of any insects of any kind. But as you say, not everyone can or wants a chicken.

    Good comments!

  4. Blueyeqq says:

    All I can say about snails is …
    CHEAP BEER…yup beer.
    If you take a small cat food can, clean it and sink it into the ground to ground level, fill it with cheap beer, its like a snail magnet. They seem to like to chew on my Lilly’s every year and under each patch you will find a can with cheap beer in it…You will have to change it every other day or so. It seems the snails climb in get drunk and well thats the end of them. It works great.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Here is another way to keep snails and slugs away from your plants without harming them. Save your eggshells and crush them up and sprinkle them around your plants, the shells are like razor blades to them and they will not cross over them!

  6. Anonymous says:

    well I took a stubbie of beer and drank it myself whilst squashing the snails eating my plants- I left a bit for the snails! and they drank it too- everyone was happy.

  7. Hilary says:

    Sounds pretty good!

  8. Anonymous says:

    I HAVE USED A VERY SURE WAY TO ATTRACT SLUGS TO THE BAIT BUT SO FAR NO SNAILS. THE SLUGS CAN NOT RESIST YEAST! PUT ONE TEASPOON OF DRY YEAST IN A SMALL CONTAINER ALONG WITH A TEASPOON OF SUGAR. ADD VERY WARM(ABOUT 110 DEGREE)WATER TO ACTIVATE THE YEAST, SET IT AT THE SITE OF YOUR NIBBLED PLANTS IN THE FLOWER BEDS OR VEGGIE GARDEN. I HAVE TRAPPED AS MANY AS 13 SLUGS IN ONE NIGHT. THEY FALL IN AND DROUND!I
    REFRESH EVERY NIGHT UNTIL THEY ARE GONE!

  9. Anonymous says:

    I can agree that the snails love the cat/dog food. I'm looking for a way to keep the snails out of my pets food. I have tried treating the area with bug spray without killing my poor dog in the process but, they are still there and twice as many now. Any suggestions? I could use some help… deanna599@yahoo.com

  10. Hilary says:

    Hi Deanna,

    There are several things you can do to keep snails out of your pet's food.

    Please read our Definitive Guide on How To Kill Snails and Slugs.

    It gives over 12 different ways to organically and safely kill slugs and snails.

    You pet food will be safe and your garden free of these pests forever.

  11. CANDI says:

    HI thank you for ur tips I did a veg and herb box garden using child closet insert that I got free my husband put legs on them for me and they are high enough for me where I don’t have to bend down to tend to them. but not high enough for the snails I found a mother,father, baby and uncle snail in the herb garden hiding so I toss them out over the side of the backyard no neighbors yard lol! and I will be trying the ideas here to get rid of them. thank you for ur tips!

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