How to use vinegar to get rid of armadillos

Armadillos can be a nuisance when they invade your property. These small, armored creatures are known for their destructive habits and can wreak havoc on gardens, lawns, and flower beds. If you’re facing an armadillo problem and want to find a natural and effective solution, vinegar can come to your rescue. In this article, we’ll explore how you can use vinegar to get rid of armadillos and protect your outdoor spaces.

use vinegar to get rid of armadillos

Armadillos are known for their burrowing behavior, which can cause significant damage to your property. By understanding their habits and recognizing the signs of their presence, you can take appropriate measures to deter them effectively.

Armadillo Habits and Behavior

Armadillos are nocturnal creatures that primarily feed on insects, grubs, and other small invertebrates found in the soil. They have strong digging abilities and can create extensive burrow systems for shelter and nesting. These burrows can undermine the stability of structures such as foundations, patios, and walkways.

Signs of Armadillo Presence

To determine if armadillos are present in your yard, keep an eye out for the following signs:

  • Distinctive conical-shaped holes in your lawn or garden.
  • Uprooted plants or damaged root systems.
  • Presence of small diggings or tunnels near the edge of your property.

Potential Damage Caused by Armadillos

Armadillos can cause significant damage to your property, including:

  • Destroying plants and gardens by digging for food.
  • Creating unsightly burrows and tunnels.
  • Undermining the stability of structures.

Why Vinegar is an Effective Solution

Vinegar is a natural and environmentally friendly solution to deter armadillos. It contains acetic acid, which produces a strong odor that armadillos find repulsive. This smell acts as a deterrent and helps keep them away from your property.

Vinegar as a Natural Repellent

Vinegar is widely recognized for its repelling properties. The strong scent is known to be effective in deterring various pests, including armadillos. By using vinegar, you can naturally discourage armadillos from entering your property without resorting to harmful chemicals.

Using Vinegar to Deter Armadillos

Here’s a step-by-step guide on using vinegar to get rid of armadillos:

Gather the Necessary Supplies

Before you begin, gather the following supplies:

  • White vinegar
  • Spray bottle
  • Protective gloves

Identifying the Affected Areas

Survey your property and identify the areas where armadillos are active or have caused damage. These are the areas where you’ll focus your vinegar treatment.

Applying Vinegar to the Problem Areas

Put on your protective gloves and fill the spray bottle with white vinegar. Thoroughly spray the affected areas with vinegar, ensuring you cover the ground and any potential entry points. Armadillos have a keen sense of smell, so even a light application should suffice.

Reapplying Vinegar as Needed

After rain or heavy watering, reapply vinegar to maintain its effectiveness. The smell can dissipate over time, so regular applications are necessary to keep armadillos away. Monitor the affected areas and reapply vinegar as needed.

Other Natural Methods to Deter Armadillos

While vinegar can be an effective deterrent, combining it with other natural methods can enhance the results. Consider the following additional approaches:

  1. Ammonia: Armadillos also dislike the smell of ammonia. Soak rags or cotton balls in ammonia and place them near their burrows or other problem areas.
  2. Garlic and onion: Both garlic and onion have strong odors that armadillos find unpleasant. Planting these around your garden or using their essence in a spray solution can help repel armadillos.
  3. Physical barriers: Install fences or barriers around your garden to prevent armadillos from entering. Use sturdy materials that extend at least a foot underground to deter their burrowing attempts.

Additional Methods to Complement Vinegar Usage

While vinegar can be effective in deterring armadillos, you can enhance its impact by implementing the following measures:

Fencing and Barriers

Installing fences or barriers around your property can prevent armadillos from gaining access. Choose materials that armadillos cannot dig through or crawl under, such as fine mesh wire or sturdy fencing.

Removal of Attractants

Eliminating potential attractants can make your property less appealing to armadillos. Remove any sources of food, such as insects, grubs, or fallen fruits. Keep your lawn well-maintained and free of debris that can provide shelter.

Seeking Professional Assistance

If you’ve tried various methods but still struggle to control armadillos, it may be beneficial to seek professional assistance. Wildlife control experts can provide specialized solutions tailored to your specific situation, ensuring a thorough and effective removal process.

Precautions and Considerations

While vinegar is generally safe to use, it’s essential to take some precautions and consider certain factors:

Safety Precautions While Handling Vinegar

When handling vinegar, especially in concentrated form, it’s advisable to wear protective gloves to avoid direct contact with your skin. Additionally, avoid spraying vinegar near your eyes or inhaling the vapor.

Potential Drawbacks of Vinegar Usage

While vinegar is an effective deterrent, its odor can be unpleasant for humans as well. Ensure proper ventilation during and after application to minimize any discomfort. Additionally, be aware that vinegar may not provide a permanent solution, as armadillos can adapt and return if the underlying attractants are not addressed.


Using vinegar to get rid of armadillos is a natural and environmentally friendly solution. By understanding armadillo habits and behavior, utilizing vinegar as a repellent, and implementing additional preventive measures, you can successfully deter armadillos from your property. Remember to reapply vinegar regularly and address any attractants that might draw armadillos back to your yard.


  1. Is vinegar safe to use around pets?
    • Vinegar is generally safe for pets, but it’s advisable to consult with your veterinarian for specific guidance regarding your pet’s health and any potential sensitivities.
  2. How long does vinegar’s scent remain effective?
    • The effectiveness of vinegar’s scent can vary depending on factors such as weather conditions and the armadillo’s proximity. It’s recommended to reapply vinegar after rain or heavy watering.
  3. Can I use any type of vinegar?
    • White vinegar is commonly used for deterring armadillos. While other types of vinegar may work, white vinegar is the most readily available and cost-effective option.
  4. Will vinegar harm my plants?
    • When used in moderation, vinegar should not harm most plants. However, it’s recommended to avoid directly spraying vinegar on sensitive or delicate plants.
  5. Can armadillos dig under fences?
    • Armadillos are proficient diggers and can potentially dig under fences. To prevent this, bury the fence at least 1-2 feet deep or consider using a barrier that extends underground.

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