Ammonia is one of the most famous home remedy snake repellants. But, according to scientists, there’s no clear evidence that ammonia actually repels snakes. Rather, it likely just gives a false sense of security.
People believe ammonia is an effective snake repellant because of its pungent odor and resemblance to urine in scent. It’s reasonable to assume ammonia is could be seen by experts as a warning indication by snakes, who believe a predator is nearby. But, unfortunately, there’s no solid evidence yet that it’s highly effective.
The best way to keep snakes away is to keep a clean yard with minimal places for snakes to nest. If there’s a problematic snake infestation already at your home, your best choice is to hire a professional pest control agency to manage the infestation.
Disclaimer: FaunaFacts does not encourage or condone the use of unregulated or home remedy animal repellents. Animal repellents must be used in accordance with the product labels and local regulations. Placing pesticides and chemicals around your property may be dangerous and can contravene local laws. Do not approach wild animals. Consult a pest control professional for advice on what’s best for your situation.
How Can Ammonia Repel Snakes?
Ammonia is an unproven home snake repellant with a distinct odor that is comparable to that of urine. According to its advocates, snakes will stay as far away from ammonia-treated regions as much as possible.
This is because ammonia supposedly makes snakes uncomfortable and harms their respiratory systems. It may also creates an illusion of a predator’s presence.
Many pets are in fact affected by ammonia’s strong odor. Ammonia may cause harm to your cat, dog, and other welcome native wildlife that belongs in your garden.
Nevertheless, snakes often slither right past open ammonia with no effect on them. So, it seems to cause more harm than good most of the time.
How Do People Use And Apply Ammonia To Repel Snakes?
When faced with a snake problem, ammonia is often used a quick and easy home remedy. People sprinkle it along entrance ports and around perimeters of yards. It is also often placed strategically around the garden to deter snakes.
People generally apply ammonia as a diluted solution (diluted with water). Once mixed, people usually soak a cloth in the ammonia solution or pour the solution into a spray bottle for spraying around the house.
People then take the soaked rug and store it in a plastic bag that has not been sealed, and then place it near snake-infested areas to keep them away.
Another approach is sprinkling or spraying the mixture around the outside of your house or over your yard. For this, the solution is applied in a line while paying attention to cracks and corners.
We do not like this approach. We feel it is ineffective, may harm wildlife or pets, and is not backed by science. We think the best solution is to get a professional pest control service to do the job for you.
Related Article: Does Diesel Keep Snakes Away?
Does Ammonia Kill Snakes?
Ammonia is a powerful, colorless, smelly gas that is highly soluble in water. Poisoning is possible if ammonia liquid is swallowed or inhaled. Note that prolonged exposure to a high concentration of ammonia may kill a snake as inhaling it might damage their respiratory systems.
Similarly, it can cause severe damage to children, pets, and native wildlife.
Related Article: Can Chickens Keep Snakes Away?
Safety Considerations When Using Ammonia
When using ammonia products, you should thoroughly follow all of the manufacturer’s recommendations. Otherwise, it would be best if you looked for other, safer ways to deal with your snake problems.
Do not combine ammonia with chlorine bleach since this generates poisonous fumes known as chloramines. Chloramine gas exposure can induce coughing, shortness of breath, chest discomfort, nausea, throat, nose, eye irritation, pneumonia, and fluid in the lungs.
Ammonia can irritate the skin, eyes, and lungs. So, when applying, wear appropriate clothing and eye protection. Also, keep the space adequately aired.
Is Ammonia Harmful to People and Pets?
Ammonia concentrations above a certain threshold can cause severe damage, including burns.
Ammonia is both an irritant and a corrosive. High concentrations of ammonia in the air may immediately burn the nose, throat, and respiratory tract. It might also cause immediate skin or eye discomfort. If swallowed, it can cause severe abdominal pain and burns in the mouth, throat, and stomach.
The other thing to be concerned about is that this might make you, your family, and your pets sick. Ammonia may turn gaseous, and inhaling it might damage your respiratory system.
Your children or pets may also come into contact with something that contains one of the chemicals and put it in their mouths, or they may get the material on their hands and rub it in their eyes or mouth. This can make your dogs sick and possibly cause them to die. That appears to be far too dangerous even to attempt to utilize this drug.
So, What Works?
Clearly, you can see we’re not convinced ammonia is as effective as people think.
What’s proven to work is:
- Keeping grass mown.
- Removing wood piles, foliage piles, rock piles, or other potential nesting places for snakes.
- Leaving clear space between the house and garden beds and shrubs.
- Sealing gaps in buildings that may allow snakes to get through.
- Contacting pest control professionals.
All Articles in our Snake Repellant Series:
Snake repellents such as ammonia are often used as home snake remedies. Supposedly, snakes despise the odor of ammonia and will not approach it.
However, we’re not convinced. For ammonia to be effective, the scent would have to be far too strong, which would be harmful to humans in the area, too. There are no clear scientific studies showing that diluted ammonia or bagged rags of ammonia are effective snake repellants.
We think the best solutions are prevention and then, if you have a snake infestation, contacting your local pest control professional.
Joe is a freelance writer for FaunaFacts. Joe has written extensively about snakes for the site, but also contributes content about a range of animals.