If you want to know how to prevent other cats from coming into your garden and making a pest of themselves, then this article is a must-read. While a visit from an uninvited feline every now and then isn’t usually a problem, it can become tricky when your garden becomes the local hang-out spot for all and sundry.
Not only can they affect your own cat’s mental and physical health, damage your well-kept lawn and flower beds, but they are also known to cause chaos with the birdlife.
And it doesn’t end there. We have heard of neighbours’ cats as well as strays and ferals entering people’s property and intimidating and bullying their pet cats. Some pawrents have even had to cover the cost of vet bills when their kitty has been attacked and injured in its own home or garden.
This article looks at the most effective ways to keep unwanted cats from coming into your garden. We have included natural methods as well as shop-bought solutions. Not only do these work well, but they are also safe and cruelty-free. This is because you only want to repel these pests, not harm or injure then in the process.
Don’t have time to read it all? Why not take a look at our quick guide on how to keep other cats out of your garden at the end of the article?
10 Ways To Stop Cats Coming To Your Garden
Even the most moggy-mad person will get annoyed when the neighbour’s cat poops on their lawn, wrecks flowerbeds, disturbs the birdlife, raids bird nests or makes their own pet’s life miserable. Thankfully there are quite a few ways to keep unwanted felines out.
Here are our 10 most popular tried and tested methods.
1. Keep your garden clean
One of the main reasons cats roam is in search of food. To keep them out of your garden, it is crucial to make sure your bins are correctly closed, and there is no access to other food.
Also clean up any poo left from other cats, including your own pet. An unassuming piece of poop can set off some serious turf wars.
2. Use a microchipped cat flap on your cat’s outdoor shelter
If you have an outdoor cat shelter that neighbouring cats like to call home, it is worth installing a microchipped cat flap. These innovative little devices allow you to program your cat’s unique ID number, preventing other cats from gaining access.
3. Create uncomfortable surfaces in your garden
Because cats have sensitive padding on their paws, you can stop them from ruining your garden by creating an uncomfortable surface for them to walk on. There are several ways you can do this, including:
- Use pebbles or small rocks in and around flower beds
- Lay thorny cuttings in flower beds
- Sprinkle coffee grounds in flowerbeds
4. Introduce smelly plants in your garden
Cats have a heightened sense of smell and are repelled by strong odours or unpleasant tastes. We recommend planting lavender, pennyroyal, Coleus Canina (more commonly known as the scaredy-cat plant) and rue.
5. Use other pungent products
There is a wide range of natural pest repellent products that can be used to safely get rid of unwanted cats (and dogs). These work by releasing a strong odour that stops an animal in its tracks. Alternatively, because cats really don’t like citrusy smells, you could scatter grapefruit, lime, orange or lemon rinds on your lawn and in the flower beds. This cheap and 100% safe method will prevent them from coming onto your property.
6. Create a cat-friendly area
Another option is to go with the old adage “if you can’t beat them, join them”. Creating a cat-friendly area or ‘catateria’ as we like to call it, is an excellent way to confine cats to one spot in the garden.
Setting up an outdoor cat shelter for strays and uninvited visitors in a designated area and planting catnip or catmint will stop them from exploring no-go zones. You can also place litter trays in the communal areas, which will stop them using the rest of your garden as a toilet.
7. Use noise to deter cats
With their keen sense of hearing, cats can be kept out of your garden with an ultrasound repellent. This device works by emitting a high-frequency sound that cats (and other pests such as foxes) don’t like. The noise is undetectable to humans and won’t scare birds away.
Another option is to hang wind chimes or bells. These items do the trick by scaring unwanted visitors off, although there is a small chance a cat could get used to the sounds.
8.Fit a squirrel baffle to bird feeders
Abundant birdlife could be attracting cats to your garden. If this is the case, we suggest placing a squirrel baffle on the posts. This will stop a cat climbing up, keeping the birds safe, and more importantly, alive.
9.Invest in wall spikes
Wall spikes are a great way to keep cats off your property. They are easy to install, and the points create an uncomfortable surface for cats to walk on.
10.Arm yourself with a water pistol
A water pistol can work wonders keeping neighbourhood cats away. Simply have one filled and ready to spray when you spot an uninvited guest in your garden. This method is as affordable as it is effective.
However, and this is important to remember, you should only squirt water near the cat, not at it, and always make sure that the water pressure is low.
Take note! According to the RSPCA, by law, cats are protected, which means they can roam freely. It is essential that any deterrents you use to get rid of another cat do not cause it injury, harm or stress in any way. If you need more information, click here.
Checklist: How to Keep Unwanted Cats Out of Your Garden at a Glance
We understand that time is valuable, especially at the moment, which is why we have included this quick ‘how-to’ checklist. Keep it handy.
- Make sure you pick up any animal poo you find in your garden every day.
- Place a squirrel baffle on bird feeder posts.
- Cover fish ponds to keep your fish safe.
- Cats don’t like citrusy smells. Scatter the peels of citrus fruits around your garden.
- Use ultrasound devices, wind chimes or bells to scare off cats (and other pests).
- Create uncomfortable walking surfaces for cats with wall spikes.
- Have a low-pressure water pistol handy. Remember to aim close to the cat and not directly at it.
- Always make sure the method you use is humane, cruelty-free and won’t harm or injure an animal in any way.
Hopefully, we have helped solve your question of keeping unwanted cats out of your garden. Of course, if you have found a solution that we haven’t included, we would love for you to share it with us. Tell us in the comments section below.