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Do Orange Peels Keep Cats Away? Facts & FAQ

Cats have a mind of their own and don’t tend to listen to directions. Many cat owners would say that they can’t control what their cat does under any circumstances. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if you can’t keep your own cats or stray cats away from your plants, flowers, and food gardens. There is only so much yelling and shooing that you can do before it’s time to start looking for a solution that will work, once and for all.

You may have heard about using orange peels to deter cats from places where you don’t want them to be, and you may be wondering if they actually work. The answer is, anecdotally yes. So, what exactly do the orange peels do, and what results can you expect? Read on to learn more!

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How Orange Peels Keep Cats Away

Cats have an extremely sensitive sense of smell, and they can detect scents farther away than we humans can. Most cats also detest the scent of citrus fruits, like oranges. Therefore, they tend to steer clear of such fruits. An unpeeled orange won’t bother your cat that much, but the oils in the orange peel are sure to turn a cat around and make them go in the opposite direction.

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Image Credit: kisa2014, Shutterstock

How to Utilize Orange Peels as a Cat Deterrent

The easiest and seemingly most effective way to deter cats with the help of orange peels is to simply gather a few peels and layer them in the soil around the plants, trees, and foliage that you don’t want any cats messing with. But you must do this regularly to keep cats away indefinitely. If you can’t keep up with the process of adding and removing orange peels in your gardens, consider making an orange peel spray instead. You can then spray the leaves, stalks, stems, and trunks of trees, plants, and foliage that you want to deter cats from a few times a week.

Just fill a big pot with orange peels, and cover the peels with clean water. Then, boil the peels for about 15 minutes, and let the water cool down before filling a reusable spray bottle with it. The spray is ready to be used!

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Image credit: ulleo, Pixabay

Other Cat Deterrent Options to Consider

If orange peels aren’t working for you or you want to add another layer of protection to your gardens, there are a few other deterrent options to consider. For example, you could install motion-sensor sprinklers that will turn on anytime a cat goes near your garden and scare them away. You could also try a motion light for nighttime deterrence.

Water guns and noisemakers like whistles can come in handy when you are around to see a cat getting into your gardens. Putting chicken wire over your gardens is also a great way to keep cats away. Surround your plants with anything pokey, like plastic plant stakes or pine cones, to keep cats from trying to get too close.

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Why You Should Keep Cats Away From Your Food Sources

While it’s not a big deal for a cat to mess with an ornamental plant or flower unless they ruin them, it is a big deal if they get into your food gardens. Stray cats tend to carry a parasite called toxoplasma gondii, which can be dangerous to a human’s health. Cats transmit toxoplasma gondii through their feces, and even if only a cat’s paw has come into contact with the feces, that paw could transmit the parasite to your veggies and greens and result in transmission to yourself or a family member. For this reason alone, it’s a good idea to take steps that will keep cats from getting into your food gardens.

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Featured Image Credit: esudroff, Pixabay