Cockroaches inhabit all areas of the world, but they really like dark, damp places with food sources, which can be found in most homes. There are many kinds of cockroaches. According to Texas A&M University, the cockroaches do not directly carry disease. However, they may contaminate kitchen surfaces. They may also cause allergic reactions in some people.There are pet-safe remedies available.
Cockroaches often enter buildings through loose-fitting window or door openings. They may follow wires or pipes through the walls. Sealing these entrances will help keep them out. Keeping counters and sinks clean and food sources covered will help deter them.
Keep pet food in sealed containers and clean up pet food dropped on the floor. Remove garbage from the kitchen often and keep outside containers closed. Check groceries before bringing them into the house. Clean sink strainers and garbage disposals often. Eliminate clutter. Cockroaches will eat old clothes, books and paper if they cannot find better food sources.
You can purchase traps with various ingredients to catch and dispose of cockroaches. You can also make your own. The University of Massachusetts suggests using a bowl or jar with steep sides. Grease the inside of the bowl up to the lip to make the sides slippery. Place food, such as dampened bread or crackers, in the bottom with a damp paper tower. Use a dry paper towel to build a ramp up to the rim, and place your trap in a cockroach-hiding place. In the morning, flush the catches down the toilet.
Most baits on the market are safe for pets if put in out-of-the-way places. Because the active ingredients are in a sealed container, pets will not be able to get to them. Place the baits near areas where roaches have been seen, tucked into corners or under furniture.
Boric acid effectively controls cockroaches indoors. Place it in cracks and corners where the cockroaches may travel. Boric acid, which adheres to a cockroach's body, is ingested when it is grooming.
The University of Massachusetts says boric acid is safe when used in small quantities. Your pet will not eat much, if any, boric acid placed in cracks and corners. Many commercial products use boric acid as the active ingredient.
Diatomaceous earth, available at most garden centers, will rid your home of cockroaches without harming your pets. Make sure to get "food grade" and not the product made for pool filters, which contains chemicals. S.M. Valles and P.G. Koehler of the University of Florida explain that diatomaceous earth absorbs the waxy covering on an insect's body, causing dehydration.
You can also safely use this to control fleas. Do not inhale it as it could irritate your lungs. Place it in cracks or crevices.
Sandy Rothra has a background in business and writing. She has written instructional articles for Edubook and other websites since 2009. Her interests include nutrition, homemaking, gardening and animal husbandry. Rothra has a Bachelor of Arts in business management from the University of Phoenix.