How to Keep Flies Away From Dog Poop [3 Effective Methods]

The best way to keep flies away from dog poop is to use sticky tape or bag bait. Flies are attracted to dog poop because of the scent. The sticky tape and bag bait will attract the flies more than the dog poop will. Just be sure to place new ones out every few days.

Let’s be honest, nobody likes flies. It’s hard to enjoy your time outside when you’re being swarmed by bugs. Unfortunately, dog owners quickly learn that unless they immediately pick up the dog poop, flies will come swarming in and ready to feast.

Having dogs who poop outside, so all dogs (we hope!), attracts more flies. You definitely don’t want to stop your dog from pooping outside, so the next best option is to figure out how to keep flies away from the poop. The best option is to clean up the poop immediately, but we know that’s not realistic.

In today’s article, we are going to go over various ways to keep flies away from waste. Give each method a shot and see which one works best for you.

Different Types of Traps

There are three main methods to keep flies away from dog poop. You can trap the flies, repel the flies, or clean up things that attract flies. In this first section, we will go over the easiest method…trapping the flies.

Sticky Tape

Fly tapes are a cheap, easy way to control flies. They are adhesive strips coated in scents to attract flies. For this to work best, you should hang it in sunlight and someplace it won’t catch too much wind.

Keep in mind, if you live in an area prone to frequent heavy rainfall, this may not be the best option for you as the rain washes away the adhesiveness. These are safe enough to be used indoors as well, only flies can detect the smell on the tape, so you don’t need to worry about having a weird scent in your home.


Almost identical to tape, the sticks are coated in a baited adhesive. However, they are better for outdoor use because they are sturdier. The sticks are very effective, and once they’re full, just discard them and hang a new one.

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Bait Bags

Bait Bags work similarly to tapes in the sense that they attract flies via smell. They’re designed to draw flies into the bag, while being impossible for the flies to escape.

The bags are very easy to use too. You simply put the recommended amount of water in the bag then hang it outside. Bags are ideal for outside because they are weather-resistant and long-lasting, holding up to 20,000 flies!

Clean up is easy, once you feel the bag is full, you just throw it away. Unlike the tapes, these are for outdoor use only because they have a strong smell.

Baited and Reusable Fly Lamp

From the bait inside to their white light, everything about these lamps is intended to attract and capture flies. Plus, they look like lanterns, so they won’t be an eyesore in your yard. Like the bags, the lamps are baited to draw flies into them and make it impossible for them to fly out.

Once your lantern is full, empty it and put it back, or charge it if needed. While having to remember to charge it sounds like a hassle, remember it’s multi-use and poison-free, making it a more environmentally friendly trap than some of the single-use options on the market.

Apple Cider Vinegar and Dish Soap

Our favorite homemade fly trap involves apple cider vinegar and dish detergent. Simply pour apple cider vinegar into a bowl and add a few drops of dish detergent. Place the bowl near the area in the yard where your dog usually poops.

If you notice flies are gathering around the trash can where you throw the poop away, you can also place the bowl near the trash can.

The reason this works so well is that the flies are attracted to the apple cider vinegar, and the soap will trap the flies in the liquid, causing them to drown.

Repellents to Keep Flies Away From Dog Poop

Repellents are completely the opposite of traps. Traps work by attracting flies, repellents work by trying to keep flies away. Here are four ways to repel flies.

Bug-Repelling Incense Sticks and Candles

Yes, such a thing exists, and they even work outdoors! They work exactly like incense you’d burn in your house. Stick them in the ground around the perimeter of the area you’re trying to repel flies from and light them.

It takes them around 2 hours to burn all the way. Just be mindful and keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t fall over or go out. Most are entirely harmless and free of chemicals, so they’re safe to use as often as needed. As always, double-check that the product you’re using is pet friendly.

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Repellent Candles are another option to repel flies. They burn for up to 30 hours and go well with outdoor décor. They smell good too! Place a few candles around your yard and burn them for an hour or so a day to fend off flies.


There is a huge variety of spray repellents on the market today. You can even find organic sprays. Just always be sure that what you’re spraying is safe for your dog, lots of repellents contain chemicals that make dogs sick if ingested.

The type of spray you use and the amount of rainfall will determine how often you’ll need to use it. Spray repellents are incredibly effective if you remember to use them routinely.

Homemade is Always Better

If you, or your dog, have an allergy to something in bug sprays, it’s easy enough to make your own! There are dozens of recipes online for homemade indoor and outdoor repellents. They give you the relief of knowing what the ingredients are while getting the job done.

This is so cost-effective as you probably have most of the ingredients in your home already. Some of the most common ingredients are apple cider vinegar, citrus fruit peels, essential oils, lemon, vinegar, and dish soap.

Plants That Repel Flies

Lots of plants have proven to be effective fly repellents. Who doesn’t love pretty plants in their yard? Especially when they fight off flies! Basil, Lavender, Mint, Rosemary, and Marigolds are all reliable options and safe for pets.

However, large amounts of lavender can make your dog sick if ingested. As mentioned above, the Citronella candles repel flies; however, while the candles are safe to burn, Citronella plants are toxic to dogs.

Clean Up Crew

The last (and most obvious way) to keep flies away from dog poop is to quickly clean up the yard.

Poop Pick-Up

Proper sanitation is the best way to reduce the flies both inside and outside. If there is no poop for flies to gravitate toward, then you don’t have to worry about flies swarming it. We know this is not a particularly fun task, but it is the most effective way of keeping flies from your dog’s poop.

Not only does it get rid of flies, but it also keeps your yard clean. No one likes stepping in dog poop during a game of touch football. To make things easier, you can teach your dog to poop only in a designated area of your yard. This way, come clean up time, you only have to go to one spot rather than searching.

Yardwork Makes the Dream Work…

Ridding your yard of fly breeding zones helps immensely. Flies are attracted to moist and dying things. Trimming rotting plants and throwing out old mulch give flies less to be drawn to. If you have any fruit or vegetables in your yard that are overripe, throw them out too, so they don’t rot and attract flies.

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If you want to take it one step further, mow the weeds and tall grass in your yard. These areas are not breeding zones, but they are where flies like to rest. Making your yard a less appealing place for flies will help keep them away from poop without you having to pick it up.

Lastly, make sure all trash bags and trash cans are sealed tightly and correctly so flies can’t get to them.

Is There Anything My Dog Can Eat to Keep Flies Away?

One of the most common questions about keeping flies away from dog poop is whether or not there is anything a dog can eat that will repel flies from their poop. The question makes sense considering there are things you can feed your dog to get your dog to stop eating their own poop.

Unfortunately, when it comes to flies, there is no such product. Flies will be attracted to dog poop regardless of what the dog eats.

Which Method Will You Choose?

There are plenty of methods to keep flies away from dog poop. The “best” way would be to pick up the poop right away, but we understand that can be a pain. The next best options are to either attract the flies to a different area and trap them, or to use an insect repellent to keep them away.

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