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How do I keep my cats out of my flower garden? They're using it as a litter box! Answered

I have just planted my flower garden with all sorts of seeds and bulbs. Unfortunately, my cats seem to think that I've dug up all of this nice dirt for them to use as a litter box. I've tried coffee grounds sprinkled on the area which I've heard are repulsive to cats and also fertilize the flowers, but my cats evidently were born at a Starbuck's. I now have sprinkled mothballs all over the flower bed but I'm afraid that they are going to burn my plants that are now coming up although they are keeping the cats out. Can anyone help me?



Best Answer 8 years ago

Get someone to attach a motion sensor (just like you have for an outside light at night) that is 'looking over your garden' to a timer for the garden sprinkler (set it to run for about a minute or so).  Then place the sprinkler in the middle of your garden. Every time the cat (or any other animal) goes to do a poo in the garden the sprinkler starts and it gets wet - and don't they just hate that!  :)

I second this option, I bought a http://amzn.to/Sx8uiY and haven't had any problems since. Some of the best money I've spent to help my garden. It was so frustrating to work on a plant to have it eaten or dug up.

My cousin used metal jacks (from the kid's game) and sprinkled them around. The cats didn't like the randomly placed spikes. She got a "magnet sweeper" at Home Depot. Whenever she wanted to do work in her garden, she'd get the magnet sweeper, and pick up all the jacks (she wrote how many there were on the sweeper).

Maybe baking soda would take away or neutralize enough of the smell, then the cats could keep fertilizing your garden.

A lot of websites and people recommend moth balls, but I'm not sure I'd be comfortable with that since mothballs have naphthalene/paradichlorobenzene, which can hurt them.

I'd be surprised if others hadn't already said these but: citrus peels, mulch, netting, red peppers, coffee grounds, thorny (rose) branches (could cut paws) or a thorny plant, catnip.

We used to live in the country and have several neighbors with gardens and various animal problems.
~One with tomatoes, carrots, beans, and pineapple, put coyote urine in it and the raccoons and opossums left the fruits and vegies alone. It made the raccoons stop terrorizing our chickens at night.
~Another put his own human pee in the garden (don't know how well it worked).
~Another made a scarecrow. He was good with electronics. He got a motion-sensing christmas tree, took the green needles off, put a heavy duty plastic bag on it to make it waterproof. It worked for a while.     Maybe you could teach your cats to avoid a certain object - unpleasant things happen to them when they're near it.

I use rose prunings scattered over freshly dug ground. gives them pause (paws?) for thought

I live in Israel where the cats roam freely... My neighbor puts citrus peels (orange, grapefruit and lemon) on her small garden and the cats don't touch her plants.

Holly leaves work also and if you use enough it makes a good mulch they don't like the spikes up the B

Plant Lemon Grass. In India they use it as a tiger repellant. Or lay down sticky fly ribbons or fly paper as a punishment device for the cat. The cat will have hours of misery trying to get the stickum out of its fur. Unbaited spring mouse traps are also good, but rat traps can break a paw.

"Plant" dry, dead sticks into the flower bed about a cats width apart.


this should work, plant a small (2ftx2ft) patch of catnip nearby we had one and our cats spent all their time sleeping in it


9 years ago

we had this problem in our raised tomato planter. We put a dried snake skin (shed from a 5-ft boa). The cat was terrified of it. Worked like a charm.


9 years ago

There are products you can use to repel cats and dogs alike from your garden such as "Get Off My Garden" which is seen here.


My neighbor used to use this product in her garden and it seemed to work, I never seen the neighborhood cats and dogs in her yard as they used to be. She told me that she used "Get Off My Garden" spray repellent and moth balls in jars. For the mothball method, you are supposed to use mason style jars with a few holes poked in the lid. She also told me that it is somewhat dangerous and she stopped using it after she had kids because mothballs and small children do not mix. Hope this answer helps.

There is an easy, eco-friendly, pet and kid friendly method that works for squirrels that will work for cats too


its not a good fertilizer cat

poop is bad for fertilizer you can get disease 's from it especially from outside not to mention stray cat

That's why I need to know how to keep cats out of my garden.

bb gun.

Awesome idea but that's illegal. I don't even have cats. I can't stand them! All the neighbor cats poop in my garden. Today I'm going to try pepper. Wish me luck!


3 years ago

The elderly in particular use a cat-deterrent in their garden. It is a small apparatus with a speaker attached to it. It produces a high-pitched bleep of more than a 100 decibel. The sound is mostly only audible for children, youngsters and people with ears that are still good. Many cat-deterrents use the same noise as the Mosquito. The sound causes pain in the ears, headache, and ringing in the ears. If you have any complaints consult your GP and make mention of it on social media!


3 years ago

The elderly in particular use a cat-deterrent in their garden. It is a small apparatus with a speaker attached to it. It produces a high-pitched bleep of more than a 100 decibel. The sound is mostly only audible for children, youngsters and people with ears that are still good. Many cat-deterrents use the same noise as the Mosquito. The sound causes pain in the ears, headache, and ringing in the ears. If you have any complaints consult your GP and make mention of it on social media!


4 years ago

Put down Chicken Wire and some Rocks to wait it down. They can't dig through it. And it Won't Hurt Them!

And you can even cover it with landscaping to hide the wire.

I see red peppers but black pepper.... It's cheap an u know it works bc we can't sniff it an be like gimme some mo! So BLACK PEPPER!

landmines...  or motion tracking automated machine guns.

or a moat of super strong acid.        or a giant glass dome.

or a 15 foot deep pit with spikes at the bottom.

or get a dog

That would probably work however, I love my cats. I don't want to annihilate them, just discourage them from "going poo" in my flower beds. I also have 4 dogs. None of the cats are afraid of them at all so that wouldn't work either. But thanks for your suggestions anyway! LOL

Don't do anything. Their "Waste" Will help fertilize the garden.

smiley, I do not know about their "waste" but their urine will kill ANYTHING!!! My flower bed has today been pronounced dead...the urine stench is incredible and it is outside my front window.

i have the same problem. And I DO NOT OWN A CAT!! strays for all over the town come to my yard, was told that they have made my yard the meeting ground to display their stench to show who is the top cat.


6 years ago

I have heard cat pee is not a great fertiziler, in fact it kills the garden.

Honestly - try a BB gun

If you lay down strips of chicken wire or other suitable material that keeps the cats from scratching the ground, it works great. I have used both chicken wire and now I have deer fencing because it is vinyl and easy to cut into the areas that I need it. You can use and reuse that material. So..no more chemicals and no worries about children getting something that would be damaging to their health or yours. I have done this for the last few years and do not have cats in my flower or vegetable beds.

you get another cat for it and try to get a area for the cat please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I use brambles and also fix plastic mesh so that it overlaps top of thr fence.
None of the ultra sound devices seem to work.

I am trying to develop a pole thatfits horizontally at the yop of the fence. it twists like a pole for an indoor blind. That way any creature fox, cat trying to climb will immediately loose their footing.

Any thoughts on this folks????

An easy and safe cat deterrent is human hair. As for some at a local hair salon, spread over the affected area and Voila! Problem solved.

you need an small electric fence for the energiser use a rutland esb 15 and for the wire i use galvanised wire but you can use poly wire and you need short
pegs all of this can be found on www.rutandelectricfencing.co.uk

chicken wire electric fence. just get a small electric fence energizer and lead 2 pieces of wire to chicken wire wrapped around the garden. don't forget a door!!


9 years ago

Imagine how you cats want their toilet. Like you say, they like the freshly dug soil, it is easy to dig a nice hole in... So - you need to make them an equally or even nicer toilet! One only for this purpose! I did this for my cat, and it works perfectly! (Only the neighbor cat has not quite got it). Perhaps I should actually post an instructable for it? Well, for now, you just dig a nice bed (away from your herbs) and don`t plant anything there. Then you take all the cat poo from your flower bed and place it in the new cat toilet. They will want to go where there is already poo, and where there is now lots of nice soil to scrape in. You should continue tumbling the soil around to keep the toilet nice to dig in. If they sometimes go in the flower bed again, you move the poo and hope it was only this time. I bordered my cat`s toilet with nice stones and an old log to make it constrained and an undisturbed place... I hope it works for other cats too. Good luck!

I agree with making an handy alternative "sand box" area.  Cats just want some dirt that is soft to dig.  You can also water your flowers more frequently, particularly when they are small and vulnerable. Cats prefer dry dirt. I have 2 cats and this method always works.  Just give them what they want!

I think that you should install some fencing in your garden that can avoid your cats to come in. I don't know that this will be a perfect idea but i think that will be helpful. You can try get it from some home improvement store online and search for more available options as well.

Any Kind of Citrus Peel

And they don't like Moth Balls very well either !

put an electric wire around it, or just spray something at them when you see them in it.......

I put down bird block netting http://www.amazon.com/Easy-Gardener-604-BirdBlock-20-Foot/dp/B00004RA0P that I bought at Orchard Supply Hardware for less than $10...make sure to get some u-stakes to hold it down...$3 for a pack of 25. Lay it over your flower bed, stake it down and trust me, your cats won't be interested. It's not as much fun scraping around when they're getting their claws caught in the netting. It's 100% safe and it allows your flowers the opportunity to grow. Good luck!

Ground black pepper (the cheaper the better) does the trick for my plants. We have more than a dozen neighborhood cats and they all stopped digging up my just-planted-seeds and seedlings when I started to use the pepper. I bought the giant package at Costco and keep it in the house while I keep a small re-usable spice shaker in my garden tool carry all. After a rain or until the plants are big enough, I shake more pepper each week. You don't want to allow the cats to continue, as commercial cat foods contain all kinds of nasties that don't belong in fruits and veggies. Also, there's toxoplasmosis (spread via kitty feces, see wikipedia for more info). Rice hulls work well too... They don't like the pokey bits between their toes.

have also heard the if you spray WD 40 on the ground--they don't like the smell and it doesn't hurt the plants

I put pine cones in my large houseplants to keep our cat out. It would work outside, too. Their feet don't like it. Put as many in as you can, like mulch! Not to be morbid, but cemeteries usually have the best and most.

I just lost my cat to coyotes. Just be glad they are not crapping in your flowers. I woul let my cat pee in my bed if he would come back. But in the mean time you could try peppercorns.


9 years ago

Try Putting an electric fence around your garden.

ouch!!!!!!!!! poor cats

Pie plates that are hung from a stick planted in the ground by a rope when the wind blows, the plate will hit against the stick and scare them kittens.