Is Terro Toxic to Dogs, Cats, & Humans? (Should You Buy?)

is terro toxic

Ants and insects are something every renter and homeowner eventually has to deal with. For years, Terro Ant Killer has been one of the most popular ant killers on the market used to tackle this problem. Is Terro toxic or safe to use around your pets and family though?

Terro is not toxic to dogs, cats, or humans if they happen to ingest it. Terro has a sweet taste and a texture similar to maple syrup, making it attractive to dogs and cats. Although animals may experience symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea if they eat enough, Terro is not toxic. 

If you want to make a thorough and informed decision about Terro and other pesticides, we’ve got you covered. In this blog post, we’ll look at the ingredients of Terro, useful alternatives, as well as Terro’s effects on humans and animals alike. 

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Here’s a Quick Pro Tip!

Terro Multi-Surface Discreet Bait Stations (over at Amazon) work far better than the traditional Terro Liquid Ant Baits. These bait stations have an adhesive strip allowing you to easily stick them to walls and places where ants may enter.

It’s important to have multiple Terro Bait Stations spread out around your house. When ants invade your home, they usually enter from multiple points and not just one spot.

You need to make sure you can poison all the colonies simultaneously. Having multiple Terro Bait Stations is crucial to ensure you kill them all so they don’t return.

What Are the Ingredients in Terro Ant Killer?

The main active ingredient in Terro is borax. Borax (also known as sodium borate, disodium tetraborate, and sodium tetraborate ) is a white, powdery earth mineral, that’s often found in many household cleaners that people use every day.

Other ingredients in ant killers like Terro include basic sugars and gels. This creates an efficient delivery system for transporting the poison to the ants.

Is Boric Acid the Same as Borax?

While they are very similar to each other, borax and boric acid are not the same. Borax is a mineral found in the earth and is a form of the boron compound. Boric acid on the other hand is an extremely processed and refined form of borax that’s often used in chemicals.

Borax is a salt derivative of boric acid. This powdery substance is often found in household cleaners. Boric acid is more refined and used in many chemical products and pesticides. 

Is Terro Toxic to Humans?

Terro can cause irritation and digestive problems in humans, but it is not toxic. Borax is the main ingredient in Terro and was even used as a food additive in the past. While it is not recommended that you intentionally ingest Terro, it is not a toxic compound. 

While Terro is not toxic to humans, its main ingredient, borax, can cause eye irritation, stomach pains, and rashes on the skin. Make sure you thoroughly rinse any part of your body that comes in contact with borax or Terro. 

What Happens if a Human Eats Ant Poison?

Most household ant poisons will cause skin irritation, lung irritation, dizziness, and nausea. When ingested in large quantities, you should seek immediate medical attention. The severity and reaction to eating ant poison are dependent upon what kind of ant poison a human eats. 

For more information about the effects of Terro and what to do if you feel like you or a loved one has ingested a dangerous amount, call your Poison Help Line immediately at 1-800-222-1222 and visit

You might also enjoy our post on Does Terro Expire?

What Happens If You Eat Terro?

If you eat Terro, the best thing you can do is quickly drink two to four cups of milk or water. The milk helps to dilute the acidic borax, which is the main ingredient in Terro. It would be best if you didn’t try to make yourself throw up but instead rely on the milk to take care of you. 

If you feel like you’ve ingested a large amount, don’t hesitate to call your Poison Help Line immediately at 1-800-222-1222

What to Do if You Get Terro on Your Skin?

If you get Terro on your skin, immediately rinse the affected area with soap and water. Thoroughly rinse and dry yourself, and you should be fine. 

If you get Terro in your eyes, then thoroughly rinse them with clean water. If symptoms of irritation continue after washing and rinsing, then seek medical help immediately. 

How Do You Clean Up Spilled Terro?

Cleaning up spilled Terro is relatively simple. All you will need is hot water, a sponge or rag, and an hour. 

  1. Soak the rag or sponge in hot water, and set it on top of the spilled Terro.
  2. Let the rag or sponge sit on top of the Terro for an hour or so before wiping it up
  3. Dispose of the rag or sponge.

This hour is needed because Terro solidifies quickly and takes time to break down. 

Is Terro the Best Ant Killer?

Terro is definitely the best, most effective, and most popular ant killer on the market today. Which Terro product you need depends on your specific situation.

For outdoor use, Terro is indeed one of the best ant killers that you can buy. Terro is pet safe, human safe, and highly effective in both its liquid and granular forms. 

The reason that Terro is so effective for outdoor use is because of its slow-acting effect. Worker ants will lap up Terro Liquid Ant Bait and take it back to share with the rest of the colony and the queen. Through this method, the entire colony will be disposed of. 

Terro also specifically makes Outdoor Liquid Ant Bait Stations you can grab pretty affordably on Amazon so that you can stop the ants before they become an indoor problem.

What is the Best Indoor Ant Killer?

Terro is among the top indoor ant killers on the market. Terro is safe for kids, adults, pets, or everything else in your house besides ants. Terro is considered the best ant killer available. It comes in liquid form or in granular form, both of which are good for indoor use. 

Terro can be strategically spread in corners and other nooks too tight for the liquid bait in its salt form. Gel pads with the liquid bait can be placed on the floor or counters out of the reach of animals and children. 

You’ll want to make sure you use multiple Terro Bait Stations when killing ants. The reason for his is that multiple ant colonies usually invade a house at the same time from different parts of your house.

You need to put down multiple Terro Bait Stations to ensure you kill them all at once so they don’t come back. The goal is to poison the queen of each ant colony. So make sure you put down multiple Terro Bait Station traps.

Child Safe Ant Killers that Work

Terro is a great ant killer that is child-safe if accidentally ingested in small amounts. While Terro is not toxic to children, it is highly recommended to keep it out of their reach.

Poison and insecticides of any kind will cause irritation and stomach pains when ingested, but Terro is not deadly to children. 

Is Terro Safe for Pets and Animals?

Terro is safe for pets and other animals in both its liquid form and granular form. It may cause eye, skin, and stomach irritation, but it will not kill your pets when ingested in small amounts.

Having said this, it’s highly recommended that you keep Terro out of reach of your pets. Its sweet taste and syrupy texture make Terro very appealing to all pets and animals. 

Is Terro Liquid Safe for Pets?

Terro liquid is safe for pets, even though it is deadly to ants and other small insects. Terro is slow-acting and takes time to kill the ants that ingest it. Because of this, low doses of Terro will have little to no effect on pets. 

Pet Safe Ant Killers that Work

If you live in a house with pets in or around your home, choosing the right ant killer that is safe for these pets is vital. While Terro is not deadly to dogs, cats, or other pets, it can cause irritation and discomfort when ingested. Terro is a good choice, but there are other good choices as well. 

Mighty Mint Spray is an excellent, pet and kid-friendly alternative to Terro. Mighty Mint Spray is made with essential oils and comes in a spray form so that you can shoot directly onto a single ant or an entire colony. Mighty Mint Spray even smells good and gives a pleasant aroma when used inside the house. 

Honestly, Terro should be perfectly fine and safe for your pets. However, if you just want to switch it up and try something else, Mighty Mint Spray should do the trick.

What Happens if a Dog Eats Terro?

If a dog eats Terro, then the best thing to do is nothing. If the dog has overeaten Terro, then they will typically begin vomiting or have diarrhea.

Dogs are resilient animals and naturally know the best thing to do to feel better. If they start to have a stomach ache, they will often start eating grass, which soothes their throats for vomiting. 

If your dog continues vomiting and shows signs of being lethargic, then take them to a vet and explain what has happened. 

Is Terro Toxic to Dogs?

Terro is not toxic to dogs when ingested in small amounts. If dogs eat too much Terro, they may require veterinarian attention, but you should have nothing to worry about in small doses. 

Can Terro Kill Cats?

It has not been proven that Terro is capable of killing small animals like cats. Just as with dogs, Terro can cause irritation and vomiting to cats, but it is not deadly to them. If your cat eats Terro and you are concerned, contact your local vet, and they will direct you from there. 

What Happens if a Cat Licks Terro?

If a cat happens to lick Terro, then the odds are that nothing will happen to them. Terro is pet safe and, at most might cause a stomach ache when licked. 

What Ant Killer is Safe for Cats?

As with dogs, Terro is a perfectly safe ant killer to use around cats. For a natural pet-safe alternative, Mighty Mint Spray is cat-safe and family-friendly for household use. 

You might also want to check out our article on How To Deal With Termites In Firewood and 10 House Plants That Keep Spiders Away For Good

Related Questions

Is Terro Harmful?

Terro is not harmful to humans or animals and is safe for household and outdoor use to get rid of ants. 

Is Terro Safe for Vegetable Gardens?

Terro is safe to be used in and around vegetable gardens as well as houses. 

Is Terro Ant Dust Safe for Humans?

Terro ant dust is safe for humans but could cause eye or skin irritation when contacted. 

Is Terro Ant Killer Safe for Humans?

Terro Ant Dust Killer is safe for humans but could cause eye or skin irritation when touched or lung and stomach irritation when ingested or inhaled. 

My Dog Ate Terro

If your dog has eaten Terro, then you shouldn’t have anything to worry about. Terro is pet safe and not deadly to dogs. 

Is Borax Poisonous to Dogs?

Borax, in its purest form, is more harmful to dogs than Terro. Borax can cause heavy vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, drooling, and other scary symptoms of poisoning. 

What Happens if a Dog Licks Borax?

If a dog licks borax, then you should contact your veterinarian immediately. Licking borax could cause stomach pains to your dog as well as irritating their tongues. 

Is Terro Ant Dust Poisonous to Dogs?

Terro ant dust is not deadly to dogs but can cause stomach and skin irritation. 

Is Terro Ant Poison Harmful to Dogs?

Terro ant poison is harmful to dogs in the way of indigestion, irritation, and other mild symptoms, but it is not deadly. 

What Happens if a Cat Eats Terro Ant Killer?

Most likely, nothing will happen if a cat eats Terro ant killer outside of mild symptoms of irritation. 

Do Ants Learn to Avoid Terro?

If ants are avoiding your Terro, then it could be because the Terro is too sweet. Ants sometimes crave proteins rather than sweets, and this could be the reason for avoiding Terro. 


If you are looking for an insecticide effective at killing ants, safe for pets and humans alike, and even child-safe, then Terro is an excellent product. While other options on the open market check one or two of these boxes, Terro will check every single one. 

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