As much as you might love cats, clearing up cat poop from anywhere except the litter tray might leave you questioning that decision! If you don’t own cats yourself but have been left little “presents” from neighborhood cats, then you probably want to put a stop to that!
We rounded up our top 12 methods for keeping cats off your lawn. Some of them will work the first time, and others may take a while before you see an effect. For best results, pick two to three methods and use them together.
How to Stop Cats From Pooping in Your Garden (12 Methods)
1. Ultrasonic repeller
Ultrasonic devices emit a sound that’s outside the range of human hearing but can be heard by cats and dogs. As the sound is irritating, most cats will avoid it by choice. You’ll have to consider where to place this, as the sound doesn’t travel too far, so it may not cover your whole garden. It’s an easy solution that may work well for smaller spaces.
2. Water sprays
These are motion-activated water sprays that use infrared technology to pick up when an animal enters your garden. They can cover a large area, and once a cat gets sprayed a few times, they will probably leave your garden alone! This is an expensive option, but if you’re having a major problem, it’s likely a worthwhile investment.
3. Chicken wire
Cats hate the feeling of anything strange under their paws, and the texture of a small gauge chicken wire can feel unpleasant. Covering any areas that you don’t want cats pooping in with this wire is an effective way of keeping them away. It can take a long time to cut and place the chicken wire, though, and it can interfere with the aesthetics of your garden.
If you’re trying to protect a particular flower bed, then covering it with netting can be a good solution. This allows you to keep certain areas untouched by cat poop. Since many cats will select the soft soil of a flower bed to do their business, simply covering it with netting is sometimes enough to deter cats to poop somewhere else.
5. Cover soil
Most cats will seek out the soft soil of flower beds as the perfect place for them to poop. It’s easy for them to dig up and feels nice and natural. You might like the look of this soil, but if your cat is using it as a litter tray, covering the soil up can be a good solution. You can use pea gravel, wood chippings, or even rocks to create a less-appealing texture.
6. Put up cat-proof fencing
If your garden doesn’t already have cat-proof fencing, then this is something to look at installing. It will only work on fence panels and walls, and it is expensive. But once it’s up, it should last a long time. This type of fencing often involves extending the top of the fence out at an angle so cats can’t jump up and over the fence.
7. Use lion dung
Cats are extremely territorial and use the scents and pheromones of other cats to determine their territory. You can even buy genuine lion poop to use as a repellent in your garden! Even the bravest tomcat will hesitate to do their business if they smell the scent of a larger cat. These pellets can be sprinkled around your garden and are inconspicuous to us humans, but your neighborhood cats will be sure to smell them.
8. Place pinecones around the garden
Cats hate stepping on anything sharp or uncomfortable for their paws, so covering areas that you don’t want cats to poop on with pinecones is a good and cheap solution. If you have a pine tree, then you can collect these yourself, or you may be able to buy them in stores. You may need many of them if you have a large garden, but for certain small areas, they can work well.
- See also: 7 Ways to Keep Cats Out of House Plants
9. Banana peel
Many cats don’t like bananas, partly because of the chemical compound ethyl acetate that bananas release as they ripen. Save banana skins, and either place them whole in your garden or chop them up and scatter them anywhere that you’ve noticed cats doing their poops. This can look messy, but you might find that after a few weeks, the cats have started doing their business elsewhere.
Citrus is a scent that’s particularly pungent to cats, so save any peels from oranges, lemons, and grapefruits. Sprinkle these in your garden over any areas that you’d like cats to avoid. This is a cheap solution, and although it doesn’t look visually appealing, if it works, it’s worth it! Another bonus is that citrus peel is biodegradable, so eventually, it will break down, and you won’t need to worry about clearing it up.
11. Odor repellent
Cats have a sensitive sense of smell, so they may be put off doing their poop somewhere if it smells strongly of something unpleasant. Essential oils like peppermint, cinnamon, and lavender are often good choices of deterrents. Be sure to dilute them well, though, as some essential oils can be toxic to cats. The scent may not last long either, so you’ll have to reapply regularly, especially after rain.
12. Scare cats
You can buy small “scare cats” with reflective eyes that you can place around your garden. At first glance, a cat may see these and think that there’s another cat already in the garden. Sometimes this is enough to put them off. These can look quite decorative and cute during the day, and they don’t need any maintenance. After a while, cats may become used to them, so it’s a good idea to move them around and combine their use with other methods.
Featured Image Credit: Katarzyna Kosianok, Pixabay