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6 Repellents That Keep Cats Out of Your Yard

Keep cats out of your yard by finding out what the attraction is and then remove it. Cats will frequent yards if there is a reliable food source or they will lie in a yard that has overgrown shrubs because they feel safe. If the entire neighborhood of cats is camping out in your yard then the cats have marked your yard as their territory.  Here's how to take away the cat welcome mat with safe and effective cat repellents.


Step 1

Find out why the cats are in your yard.  A good way to do this is to watch the cats.  When they enter your yard where do they go?  Do they go directly to your flower garden to use it as a litter box or do they stop to snack on a plant?  Do the cats drink from your water feature or do the head toward your wildlife habitat to lie down in the overgrown shrubs?  By watching the cats in your yard you will be able to determine the attraction and then you can take the necessary steps to repel the cats from your yard.

Step 2

Clean up your yard by trimming your shrubs and cutting back underbrush.  Thin out your gardens by weeding or transplanting.  A manicured yard is not appealing to cats as there is no place for them to hide.  When you alter the cats comfort zone you are sending out a message that cats are not welcome.

Step 3

Keep cats out of your yard by planting peppermint, rue, lavender, garlic, lemon grass, onions, coleus, pennyroyal and thyme. Grow these plants in gardens throughout your yard so that their scent will carry and naturally deter the cats from entering your yard.

Step 4

Prevent cats from using your garden as a litter box by cutting chicken wire to fit around your plants.  Cover the chicken wire with mulch.  The chicken wire blocks the cat’s access to dirt and the discouraged cats will exit your garden.

Step 5

Deter cats from your yard by marking your yard with organic orange oil concentrate.  This commercial pest control is formulated from orange peels. Cats do not like the scent of oranges and tend to avoid an area that is treated with citrus.  The best way to mark your yard is to pour the orange concentrate into a spray bottle and mix with water.  Shake well before marking your yard.  Spray the formula on a fence post, car tire, around the entrance of your home, a tree, shrub, post to a bird bath, or your mailbox.  Create a barrier around your yard to sends out a message to the cats that they are not welcome. 

Step 6

Repel cats from your yard with a Scarecrow motion activated sprinkler.  Install the scarecrow by putting it into your lawn or garden. Then attach the scarecrow to your garden hose and activate the scarecrow with a battery. The scarecrows motion covers a 1000 feet range. When the cat enters your yard and goes in range of the scarecrow, the cat will get wet from the burst of water emitted from the scarecrow. Expect the cats to get wet a few times before they learn to keep out of your yard.

Image Credit: Susan Golis

Tips and Warnings:

  • Remove the food source.  If you are accustomed to feeding your pets outside then change your routine and feed them indoors. 
  • Sprinkle spent coffee grounds in your gardens for a natural cat repellent.
  • Keep stray cats out of your yard by getting an outside dog. No cat will enter a yard where there is a dog.
  • Cats will try to access your yard, however the repellents will keep them out.
  • Do not use mothballs as they are harmful to children and toxic to cats and dogs.

Other Cat Repellent Articles by Author:

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Who Likes This?


user avatar
Written by weedlover, 4 months ago
Great information. I didn't know coffee grounds would keep the cats away.
user avatar
Written by James-H, 4 months ago
Some very good tips here which I use tomorrow on the weekend!
user avatar
Written by eddiemars, 4 months ago
The house next door to ours has been vacant for several years without much lawn maintenance so cats take over the place during warm weather. Great tips. Thanks.
user avatar
Written by EdieMickeySnyder, 4 years ago
You have listed some really great tips. I have heard about cats not liking cirus but I would have never considered the idea of using a sprinkler system to keep them out. Brillant.
user avatar
Written by Jasmine, 4 years ago
I don't have a garden, but I can share this useful tips with my mother-in-law. She'll be glad to learn these things. Nice article :)
user avatar
Written by PMBenfield, 4 years ago
Great tips! In some neighborhoods stray cats are a real problem.

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