9 ways to keep cats away from your home

Our cute furry friends aren’t welcome everywhere.

There are some simple tricks to keep cats away from your property, but they are not necessarily the most effective.

Animal welfare charity Mayhew said Newsweek that “what will work for one cat probably won’t be necessary for ten other cats in your garden.”

For the National Cat Research Council, the most common way to manage feral cat communities is through trap-return (TNR) methods. This involves cats being trapped, taken to the vet to be neutered and then returned to their habitat.

It says: “TNR can be an effective method to reduce the number of feral cats and reduce the number of cats and kittens entering local animal shelters.”

If help isn’t available to professionally manage the cats in your garden, here are some tips that can help keep cats away from your home.


wild cat getty
The researchers believe that wildlife populations including cats should be culled to save endangered species.

Most cats don’t like water – there are exceptions, such as the Turkish Van who love to swim – so installing a motion-activated sprinkler in your yard will prevent them.

If you live in areas that lack water due to drought, it’s best to add some feature of flowing water to avoid wasting water.

Citrus scent

Citrus Oil
Cats naturally don’t like strong, citrusy smells.
Anna-Ok / Getty Images

Cats have a very developed sense of smell, and citrus is something they really don’t like. Adding citrus peels, lemons, oranges, or grapefruits around the house will temporarily repel them. The citrus scent doesn’t last too long, so you’ll need to reapply often.

You can also rub citrus fruits on garden fences or potted plants, but Not Skip the fruit because the citrus’s acidity can make cats sick.

Ultrasonic equipment

The sound produced by the ultrasonic device is beyond the range of human hearing, but cats with large, alert ears and advanced hearing can hear it, and it may encourage them to leave.

Electronic cat repellents tend to use high frequency sound waves, water spray, or both, and they are widely available. Ideally, place the device near places where you see cats entering your property.


A potted perilla plant.
Close-up of perilla plant grown in a pot.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

Plants can naturally repel cats.

Cats hate plants with strong scents like lavender, geranium, eucalyptus, perilla, rosemary, or thyme. You can grow or buy these strong scent plants to place around your garden properly, and their scent is sure to repel cats.

Commercial repellants

If you don’t have time to create a natural cat repellent, you can apply a commercial one; Always choose one that is free of harmful chemicals.

There are a variety of commercial plant-based repellents that are suitable for indoors, outdoors, or both to keep cats away from your yard, or that precious new couch your precious cat loves to scratch.

Natural waterproof spray

Lavender flowers on the pillow.
Fresh lavender and lavender essential oils will keep cats away because they don’t like the smell.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

For those who aren’t interested in using a commercial cat repellent, you can make your own homemade one that will be just as effective.

Make your own spray using lavender, lemongrass, or any citrus scent. Alternatively, use vinegar, which contains acetic acid and have a peculiar smell that cats hate, or spray your property with cayenne pepper.

Use texture

Gardens are a prime target for cats because they like bare ground for their toilet essentials, so to scare them away, add textures to entry points like sandpaper or duct tape.

If you have a cat, you already know how uncomfortable they are when you touch their paws. They contain large concentrations of nerve receptors that make them extremely sensitive, so cats will avoid any rough or sticky surfaces.

Plastic bottles filled with water

In some areas of Japan, you can see water bottles everywhere to deter cats.

Some swear by it, others say it doesn’t work. In any case, this is a harmless and free method of keeping cats away from your property, so you can always try and test it out for yourself if it works or just a myth.

Fill empty plastic bottles with water and leave them outside, these bottles will shimmer in the sun and it’s rumored that cats don’t like anything shiny, so your garden won’t be a little box anymore their favorite outdoors too.


Coffee is a natural cat repellent. They often find coffee grounds to have an unpleasant odor, so simply sprinkle ground coffee around the garden to scare away cats. The advantage of using coffee to repel cats is that it is completely safe and the grounds are biodegradable.

Whether feral or domestic, all cats deserve a safe community, they need protection and can roam freely without injury. Whatever method you use to keep cats out of your home, make sure your method only works as a deterrent but won’t harm your cat or any other animals.

https://www.newsweek.com/ways-keep-cats-away-your-home-garden-repellent-1656312 9 ways to keep cats away from your home

Brian Ashcraft

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